Bombay Panjrapole

The Panjrapole was founded by two businessmen, Jamsetjee Jeejeebhoy and Amichand Shah, in 1834, initially to look after stray dogs and pigs. They were helped by another Parsi philanthropist Cowasjee Patel, after whom the area, CP tank, gets its name. “The British had ordered a shoot-at-sight to control the nuisance of stray dogs and pigs on Bombay roads,” says Adi Mogralia, secretary, Bombay Panjrapole. The shelter, currently being run by a Parsi trust, has expanded to include branches in Kalyan, Chembur and Bhiwandi, and one in Bhilad, Gujarat.

The aim of the Panjrapole is to nurture and care for animals in distress and protect these strays from ending up at slaughter houses or being tranquilised. “We are here to look after sick animals, not kill them. To us, they are like orphan kids. We provide for them till they die,” he says.

What started as a shelter to protect the strays has today acquired a religious significance. The dominance of cows here, coupled with a plenty of temples in the vicinity, has lent a sacred air to this shelter. It now draws pious residents and shopkeepers from in and around. “Every amavasya (new moon), people descend in huge numbers to feed the gavmata and the birds,” says the owner of a small imitation jewellery shop adjacent to the shelter.

Another interesting fact is that the presence of cows here is more incidental than intended. The Panjrapole, says Mogralia, is not a typical gavshala (cow shelter). The cows were brought in to feed cow milk to strays. “Over time, the number of cows increased. Today, out of the 1,800 animals in all seven branches, 1,300 are cows,” says Mogralia. The Bhuleshwar shelter alone yields 800 to 1,000 litres of milk daily, which is not sold to dairies but to local residents. The money is used for the shelter’s upkeep. “We don’t use artificial ways to produce more milk. Our cows are healthy. We look after them like our babies,” he says.

Each cow here is ear-tagged and they all have names.

Jeejeebhoy also built a complex housing 200 shops and 450 tenants in the area, the revenue from which was intended for upkeep of the animals. “Today the rent is not even sufficient to run the Panjrapole,” says Mogralia. Meanwhile, with generous donations and the goodwill of pious locals, the Panjrapole continues to stand tall, even after a century.

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Looking for Mr Kalyaniwalla of Mumbai/London

I am trying to trace my Kalyaniwalla family roots. The only information I have is that my great grandmother met my great grandfather, Mr Kalyaniwalla of Mumbai, while he was studying medicine in London some time prior 1920. Unfortunately I do not have my great grandfather’s first name. If this loose description of Mr Kalyaniwalla matches an ancestor of yours please contact me (Kalyan Kingi) at Refer to the photographs below depicting my grandmother for potential familial resemblance. 

U.S. Consulate General announces the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFOs) – last date of application Feb 20, 2019 I


Please find below the links of Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFOs) uploaded on Grants related queries may be addressed to

  1. M-NOFO-19-100: Conference “Opportunities for U.S.-Indian Higher Education STEM Collaboration”

  1. M-NOFO-19-101: Debate Clubs to Foster Leadership Skills in Underprivileged Youth

  1. M-NOFO-19-102: LGBT Pride Month Film Festival 2019

  1. M-NOFO-19-103: Promoting Diversity and Tolerance through Interfaith and Interclass Community Service Projects

  1. M-NOFO-19-104: Travelling Film Festival on Women’s Safety and Empowerment

  1. M-NOFO-19-105: U.S. Dance Troupe to Arts Festival in Tier-II City

  1. M-NOFO-19-106: Inspiring Social Good through Theatre

  1. M-NOFO-19-107: Disaster Management Studies Course


U.S. Consulate General Mumbai

Public Affairs Section

U.S. Consulate General, Mumbai

C-49, G Block, Bandra Kurla Complex

Bandra East

Mumbai 400 051, INDIA
Phone: 91-22-26724000

Fax: 91-22-26724421




Job Opportunities – Perth

We have received a request from leading WA company, Roy Hill, seeking help to reach out to Indian community with respect to employment opportunities available with the company. Roy Hill, is a world-class integrated iron ore mining, rail and port operation in the Pilbara region in Western Australia, and is looking for immigrants interested to work with the project. There are a wide variety of jobs available at the project under Fly In Fly Out (FIFO) lifestyle, and company invites Indian immigrants with work rights to apply for these jobs.  Details of the opportunities available and procedure for submission of resumes is provided in the attached document. We seek your assistance in disseminating information regarding the opportunities available with Roy Hill project. It is requested that this information may please be circulated within members of your organisation to assist Indian community who may be looking for similar job opportunities in mining sector. kind regards, Amit Amit Kumar Mishra
Consul General
Consulate General of India
Perth, Australia
Tel: +61-8-93254074
Fax: +61-8-92217039

Parsis offer interest-free loans, flexi pay options to its young entrepreneurs

A year ago, Parsi community came together to encourage young entrepreneurs and new start-ups and founded a programme to help deserving candidates with interest-free loans and a flexible payment schedule.
The India chapter of the World Zarathushti Chamber of Commerce (WZCC) tapped high net-worth individuals from the community and founded the scheme that already has three
They will have the option to repay the interest-free loan within a span of five years depending on their business model.
“The entrepreneurship scheme is a joint attempt of WZCC and World Zoroastrian Organisation (WZO) Trust Fund. As a community, we have never believed in asking for reservations or quota. So, this is our way to encourage youngsters to be enterprising, and contribute meaningfully to the community as well as the country,” WZCC India president Captain Percy Master told Mirror.
Before being selected, the interested entrepreneurs had to go through a rigorous three-stage process spanning five months, which included their businesses being scrutinised minutely and personal interviews with the business advisory committee.
The committee comprised ten industry leaders from the Parsi community in various fields.
“Our emphasis was to select businesses that are most likely to survive among the challenges of the modern world,” said Captain Master.

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The incredible history of the traditional Parsi Gara sari

From the quirky motifs hidden in the sari to its genesis, Ashdeen Lilaowala breaks down the nuances of a traditional Parsi Gara


The timeless elegance of a traditional Parsi Gara is undeniable. Embroidered to life with photorealistic precision, the Gara sari is a unique member in the exhaustive variety of crafts found in the country. Predominantly worn by the Parsi community during weddings and special occasions, the exquisite Gara sari deserves not to be stashed away just for those big days. Vogue spoke to Ashdeen Lilaowala—one of the few creative minds carrying the legacy of the Gara forward—about the history of the embroidery, its evolution and the lesser known facts.

Tell us about the origins of Gara

Gara embroidery came into our design lexicon at a time when the Parsis from India would travel to China for trade. They carried opium and cotton with them from India, which was bartered for tea in China. Tea as a commodity was gaining a lot of popularity in Europe and the British wanted to sell more tea in Europe. The Parsis quickly became rich trading with the British.

When they came back on their ships, they also brought back ceramics and various other antiques that were available in China. Legend says that one of the traders brought back a new kind of artistic embroidery, which was very realistic in its depiction of flora and fauna and was targeted to the European market. Eventually, it was commissioned as a five-and-a-half-metre sari for the traders from India. Earlier, the pieces that came in were fully embroidered, corner to corner, but then slowly the women started travelling to China too, and they edited them to have borders, blank spaces for tucking in, etc. The Parsi community had newly settled in Bombay, become quite rich, and now wanted a certain new look—and they adopted the Gara saris as their signature.

One of the famous designs was ‘Cheena Cheeni’, which depicts a Chinese man and a Chinese woman against a landscape of pagodas, bridges, plantations and people doing daily chores in China, carrying lanterns and other knick knacks—but these were things so exotic and unseen in India, that the design became a prized possession. They also brought back narrow borders that are called as ‘Kor’, and clothes for the children—the tunics were called ‘Jhablas’ and pants were called ‘Ghicha’. These were some of the different products that were coming via the trade.

Can you tell us a little more about other popular Gara designs?

We have quirky names for motifs. Apart from ‘Cheena Cheeni’, there is a polka-dotted motif is called ‘kaanda papeta’, which stands for onion potato. Polka dots were so common at one point, that they were jestingly compared to onions and potatoes for how readily available they were. Then there is a spin wheel motif, which the Parsis call a ‘Karoliya’, or a spider. We have a ‘Marga Margi’, which is a rooster and a hen and there’s a ‘Chakla Chakli’ too, which is a male and female sparrow.

During a research exercise, we found that there is a kind of rock formation on the sari that usually comes with a peacock perched on it—the motif is called ‘The Divine Fungus’. But when you tell a Parsi woman that there’s fungus on your sari, they (naturally!) don’t take it well. And we have seen borders with exquisitely embroidered bats as well. Indians are not fond of bats, and for Parsis, bats are equivalent to death—I’ve actually had customers tell me they’re not wearing the pieces again once I confirmed the embroidery denotes a bat, and not a butterfly, as they originally thought. We also have a sari in our recent collection called ‘Morning Glory’—it has a sun and a huge spread of birds, flora and fauna, so it is like a whole narrative about the sun being the element that manifests this abundance of flora.

How long does it take to make a Gara sari?

Depending on the density of the work, it can take anything from three weeks to two months. And when I say two months, I mean six to eight people working on one sari together.

What is the base fabric of the sari?

Even though the sari is covered in silk thread embroidery all over, it has a nice flow to it and can be draped well. The original fabric was called ‘Sali Ghaj’, which has very thin lines running through it.

Garas went out of fashion in the ’30s and were only revived in the ’80s. In Mumbai, they started using this thick fabric—Shamu satin and thick Crepe d Chine back then. Presently, we largely use crepe, but not georgette or chiffon—because the silk thread is hand-embroidered and these fabrics can’t take the weight of the embroidery.

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