Category Archives: Notable Zoroastrians

Coomi Wadia & Areez Khambatta Conferred Padma Shri Awards 2023

On the eve of India’s Republic day, two Parsis are amongst those who are conferred the Padma Awards.

The Padma Shri awards are conferred to Areez Khambatta (posthumously) and Coomi Nariman Wadia

Areez Khambatta was conferred in the field of Trade and Industry and Coomi Wadia in the field of Arts.

Parsi Khabar congratulates the family of Late Areez Khambatta and also congratulate Coomi Wadia for this fantastic achievement.

More about Areez Khambatta :

Rasna founded by Areez Khambatta is one of India;s leading brand and available across the length and breadth of the country and also available is 53 countries. Rasna has 9 manufacturing plants with ISO 22000-2005, 26 depots, 200 super stockists, 2000 stockists, 3000 sub-stockists, 7 regional offices and available in 1.6 million outlets. The company and the brand are recipient of innumerable awards and accolades.

Khambatta started India’s original start-up by creating the world-famous Rasna brand, which today also quenches the thirst of millions of Indians at an affordable price point of Rs 1,

More About Coomi Nariman Wadia:

Coomi Wadia is recognised internationally as a conductor of choral music, as a judge at music competitions, and for her definitive first performances of new music from across the world, especially from India.

At a time in history when female conductors were rare even in the West, Coomi Wadia was blazing a trail as India’s first female conductor   She rose to prominence with her innate talent and musical brilliance, bringing home the 1st prize for Overall Excellence at the IX International Choral Song Festival in Poland way back in 1974 Today at 89 years of age, she has been the Music Director and Conductor of the Paranjoti Academy Chorus for 55 years since the demise of founder Dr. Victor Paranjoti in 1967.   She was a woman on a mission: to introduce new western choral music into India and open the eyes of the West to the beauty and sonorities of Indian music.

She was a woman on a mission: to introduce new western choral music into India and open the eyes of the West to the beauty and sonorities of Indian music.  For western audiences it was exciting and ground-breaking to see sari-clad women and men in bandh-galas singing western and Indian music. Wadia raised awareness of Indian talent and has been a brand ambassador for India from the 1960s to today.

The musical excellence of the Paranjoti Academy Chorus under Coomi’s baton has been acclaimed internationally. At the “Stuttgart Partnersingen”, a festival of the sister cities of Stuttgart in 1981, Coomi was selected to conduct the final concert with over 700 singers.

Byram D Avari passes away

FEZANA is saddened to hear about the passing away of Byram Avari, the leader of the Parsi community in Karachi and Pakistan and one of it’s greatest businessman.

Byram Uncle’s contribution to the community we’re tremendous and his presence shall always be missed.

Garothman Behest to his ruvan and many condolences to his family and friends.

With deep sorrow we announce the passing away of our dear beloved,

Byram D Avari

Husband of Goshpi Avari,
father of Dinshaw, Xerxes and Zeena
in Karachi on Sunday, January 22nd 2023.

Paidus / Funeral prayers will be held at Khorshed Villa,

inside the compound of Beach Luxury Hotel

at 1pm on Monday, 23rd January 2023,
followed by Sarosh prayers at sunset
on Monday and Tuesday, 23rd / 24th January 2023





Two-time Asian Games gold medalist and businessman Byram Dinshawji Avari is no more.

Husband of Goshpi Avari, father of Dinshaw, Xerxes and Zeena passed away in Karachi on Sunday, January 22nd 2023.

Paidust/Funeral prayers will be held at Khorshed Villa, inside the compound of Beach Luxury Hotel at 1pm on Monday, 23rd January 2023, followed by Sarosh prayers at sunset on Monday and Tuesday, 23rd/24th January 2023.

In 1976 and again in 1980, Byram D. Avari served as Commodore of the Karachi Yacht Club. He won a gold medal in “enterprise-class” yachting at the Asian Games in Bangkok in 1978 alongside Munir Sadiq, and he repeated the feat in New Delhi in 1982 together with his wife Goshpi.

In 1978, he also took home a silver medal from the Enterprise World Championship hosted in Canada.

He was awarded with the Pride of Performance Award for Sports (Sailing) in 1982.

His wife Goshpi is the first Pakistani woman, a Parsi, to win a gold medal along with her husband in Asian Games in 1982.

Avari was a renowned name in the Pakistan business community. He owned and was the chairman of the Avari Group of companies.





Frene Ginwala (1932-2023): The Parsi who left an indelible mark on South Africa’s Constitution

The African National Congress leader became the first democratic speaker in the country’s National Assembly in 1994.

Areez Khambatta passes away

The Legendary past chairman of WAPIZ, past President of the Ahmedabad Parsi Panchayat, world renowned Industrialist and philanthropist Mr. Areez Pirojsha Khambatta H/o Persis, F/o Piruz, Ruzan and Delna Expired. Paydast on 20th November at 9 hrs from Parsi Doongerwadi and Uthamna on Monday 21st November at 15.40 hrs at Parsi Agiyari Khamasa Gate, Ahmedabad.




With profound sorrow and grief, we announce the sad passing away, on 19th November 2022, to the heavenly abode of the Founder and Chairman of Rasna Group, Chairman of Areez Khambatta Benevolent Trust and Rasna Foundation, Shri Areez Pirojshaw Khambatta. Shri Khambatta was also the former Chairman of WAPIZ (World Alliance of Parsi Irani Zarthostis). He was the past President of Ahmedabad Parsi Panchayat, Vice President of the Federation of Parsi Zoroastrian Anjuman of India.

In addition, Shri Khambatta has contributed immensely to Indian industry, business, and most importantly societal development through social service, as the Commandant of Ahmedabad Home Guards & Civil Defence for 20 years. Shri Khambatta’s efforts in Entrepreneurship Development societal services have been recognized with a lot of awards, to name a few: He was awarded the President of India’s Home Guard and Civil Defence Medal as well as the Paschimi Star, Samarseva and Sangram Medals. He was honored with the National Citizen’s Award for outstanding contribution to the field of Commerce by the President of India, Honorable Dr. Shankar Dayal Sharma. He was also awarded the Samman Patra by the Finance Ministry for his contribution to the National Exchequer as the highest taxpayer of Gujarat. He was felicitated by the Ahmedabad Parsi Panchayat and was chosen as the first ‘Outstanding Parsi of Ahmedabad’.

It would not be out of place to mention that Shri Khambatta started India’s original startup by creating the world-famous “Rasna” brand, which today also quenches the thirst of millions of Indians at an affordable price of hardly Rs. 1.00 that too with fruits, vitamins, and nutrients. Also, through his industrious efforts, thousands of jobs are generated directly and indirectly across India, and with his developing fruit-based products, millions of farmers have got better value for their crops across the country.

Rasna is a true example of a Make In India brand and is available in millions of homes in India and across 60 countries around the world and has always been a market leader in a segment dominated by MNCs.The Trust & Foundations under his Chairmanship and guidance have been involved in various projects to do with health care, education, scholarship, etc. from which thousands of people have taken benefit. Detailed citation of Shri Areez Khambatta is enclosed herewith. Shri Khambatta leaves behind his legacy to his wife Persis, Children Piruz, Delna, and Ruzan his daughter-in-law Binaisha, and grandkids Arzeen, Arzad, Avan, Areez, Firoza, and Arnavaz to follow. The family is committed to ensuring that his principles of duty to the country first, then our religion and duty to following his ideals be they in business or society, will be engraved in the family DNA for generations to come.

Dadi Mistry, Delhi – passes away

Dear Friends
With a very heavy heart have to inform that our dear Dadi Mistry, former President of The Delhi Parsi Anjuman, and husband of Nergish, Father of Armeen n Bella
Father in law of Navdeep n Margarita grandfather of
Shahryar married to Taara
Maneck married to Rachel
Meherab Daraius Bhavani n Chaitanya n great grandfather of Kersi Shahryar Shroff brother of Shahrukh n Katu,
passed away today morning at 9.45 am. May his soul RIP🙏🙏

Funeral today at 4.15 pm at our Parsi Aramgah.

Our deepest condolences to the entire family.

In grief
President, Vice President and Trustees
The Delhi Parsi Anjuman

Dorab Mistry appointed Chairman of Adani Wilmar Group

Dear Friends,

ZTFE is delighted to inform that our past president and current GWG representative Dorab E Mistry OBE was last week elected as Non Executive Chairman of Adani Wilmar Limited (AWL) – which is India’s largest food company by sales. AWL is a joint venture between the Adani Group of India and Wilmar International of Singapore.

AWL is listed on the National Stock Exchange of India with a market cap in excess of 10 Billion Pounds. The company operates in India and neighbouring countries. AWL has grown rapidly in the last few years and Dorab has been an independent non executive director. Dorab is regarded as one of the world’s foremost experts on agri commodity pricing.

Dorab continues his employment with Godrej and has recorded his huge gratitude to the Godrej family for their support and generosity in his take-up of this prestigious responsibility.

We congratulate Dorab on this appointment and send our best wishes.

Kindly share the good news with those who are not connected to the internet and / or do not receive ZTFE Group emails.

Your sincerely
Malcolm M Deboo
ZTFE President

Marzban Giara passes away

Marzban Giara, a treasure trove of knowledge and one of the most notable Parsi historians was a mini library in himself. He has many firsts to his name, including the first illustrated Global Directory of Zoroastrian Fire Temples, All India Directory of Parsi Institutions, The Contribution of the Parsi Community during World War I, to name a few. He was a warm person and always shared his knowledge with those who came to him, especially the younger generation. His contributions to the Parsi community are immeasurable, especially in terms of documenting history and writing books, which he has left behind for the benefit of generations to come. His sudden demise today is a loss to the entire Parsi community and he will be deeply missed. Garothman Behest Hojoji

Jehangir Bisney

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