Conditions of Zarathushtis...
Manekji Hateria's Arrival...
Marble Statue at the
Secretariat Office of the Naseri
Zarathushti Anjuman of Kerman, Iran
A Man Who Made The Difference
celebrations as well as on solemn occasion of remembering the dearly departed,
the Zarathushtis of Iran listen as a long litany of individuals from the past who
made great difference towards betterment of the lot of their fellow men are
remembered by the priests of the faith.
Rulers, champions of the Mazdysna faith, defenders of the motherland,
learned people of renown and social workers of notable contributions from times ancient to more
recent are remembered and tribute is paid to them. Included in the long list, one hears the names of Cyrus,
Darius, Adurbad Mar-Aspand, Arda-Viraf, Jamasp the chancellor, Yazdgerd
Arbab Jamshid Jamshidian,
Arbab Keikhoro Shahrokh,
Arbab Rostam Guiv, and Dr.
Esfendiar Yeganegi just to mention a few. As the individuals from antiquity to more
contemporary are remembered, one name stands out in the context of the more
recent history of the Zarathushtis of Iran, and that is Manekji Limji Hateria,
also known as Manekji Saheb.
Who was Manekji Hateria?
What did he do that has earned him so much respect and recognition from
the Zarathushtis in Iran and elsewhere. Much has been written in celebration of
his life and in remembrance of his great endeavors that ensured the flame of
Zarathushtrian religion was never extinguished in the birth land of
Zarathushtra. He acted, at the most trying times, when Zarathushti community of
Iran was severely diminished, as their mother land was going through one of the
most difficult phases of its nationhood.
A historical perspective is necessary, to gain a fuller appreciation of
the significance of Manekji Hateria’s contributions.
Historical Background of the Zarathushtis
Leading to the time of Manekji Hateria
Sassanians, the last pre-Islamic Iranian dynasty (224 – 637
A.D.) that administered the vast
stretch of the Iranian plateau made an unprecedented move of making the religion of Zarathushtra an instrument of the
This move although entailing significant political windfall for the
Sassanians, in turn meant the welfare
of the institutionalized religion of Zarathushtra of the Sassanian era became
very much tied to the political fortunes of the house of Sassan and its Kings and Queens who ruled
Iran. On few occasions when the
attacking Byzantine armies were successful in penetrating Iranian territories, highly regarded
Zarathushti temple of Azur-Gushasp as well as other temples in the proximity of
the Western borders took the brunt of Roman acts of vengeance.
The prominence given to Zarathushtrian religion by the Sassanians at time resulted in tumultuous relationship with other religious
groups in Iran, in particular the Christians.
The appearance of splinter groups such as the Manichaeans and Mazdakies was
more indicative of social upheavals of the Sassanian era rather than evidence
of any theological challenges faced by the Zarathushtiran establishment.
Culmination of events sealed the fate of Sassanian Iran at the
hands of nomadic Arabs energized by the fervor of their newly found Islamic
faith, and call to action by the issuance of a decree of Jihad (Islamic holy
war) against the neighboring states.,
 With the defeat of the imperial Sassanian
army at Qadissya and Nihavand, and the
assassination of Emperor Yezdgard III, the fate of Zarathushtrian Iran was
sealed. Each Satrapy (province), and
almost each family was left to fend for themselves
against the invading Arabs. Destruction of the Persian culture, of the religion
of Zarathushtra and plunder of the citizens’ wealth became a reality in the
aftermath of the end of the Sassanian authority.
With the fall of Iran to the Arabs, the once united country fell
in the hands of local chieftains who had converted to Islam and owed allegiance
to the Arab Caliphs. Zarathushtis (also
known as Zoroastrians) found themselves treated as second class citizens and
deprived of much of their basic civil rights.
Arab Governor of Iraq took the step of appointing a commission and dispatching
them on a winding tour of captive Iran with the mission of destroying
Zarathushtrian Fire temples. In addition to the destruction of
temples and holy sites, libraries containing wisdom of the Sassanian era were
laid to waste. Many Zarathushti temples
were converted to places of worship of the new religion.
head tax imposed on Zarathushtis and followers of religions
other than Islam known as Jizya in time
became a crushing burden on the diminishing Zarathushti community in their
ancestral land. As Islamic rule on Iran became stronger, the Zarathushti were
denied protection of the State.
Inheritance laws were instituted whereby if one member of a Zarathushti
family converted to Islam, they would automatically inherit the entire wealth
of the family at the exclusion of their siblings keeping faith with their
devastation of Eastern Iran at the hands of attacking Seljuk Turks and Mongols
in the 9th and 10th centuries and their subsequent
embracing of Islam with great fervor
dealt a serious blow to Zarathushtrian religion in Iran which was concentrated
in the Eastern region.
the time Iran was emerging from the
ravages of Timur Khan and Gengis Khan, the Safavids were emerging as a new
power house able to unify the battered country in the 14th century,
the Zarathushtis in Iran were diminished
but still numbered in millions. Almost
9 centuries into the fall of
Zarathushtrian religion from official grace in its homeland, and
despite much suffering and numerous massacres they were subjected to
more than one third of the Iranians
still adhered to the faith of their ancestors rather than yielding to
the religion from Arabia.
consolidate their power base over all of Iran and to insert the unique identity
of Iran as distinct from Ottoman Turks on the West, and Islamic Western India
on the East, the Safavid advanced Shi’iasm as the brand of Islam to be
instituted in Iran, and took the step of making that institution closely aligned
with the interest of the State. This step was somehow reminiscent of the
Sassanian’s action in making Zarathushtrian religion an instrument of
State. The followers of other belief
systems found themselves in dire strait.
Jews and other minorities were subjected to systematic persecution, and had no
recourse to the protection of the State.
in their rule, the Safavids had to move their capital from Western Iran which
was under constant threat of invasion from the Ottomans to Isfahan in Central
Iran. For over a century before the
time of Safavids, Isfahan that in
Sassanian time had considerable concentration of Iranian Jews, was serving as a
center for Iranian Zarathushtis. With
the adoption of Shi’ism as the State religion by the Safavids and the move of
their Capital to Isfahan, the Zarathushti priesthood had no choice but to flee
Eastwards. By the time the Safavid rule
was over, Zarathushtrian in Iran had been diminished to a community of a few
hundred thousands concentrated mostly in Yazd and Kerman. An event unfolding in Isfahan before the
overthrow of the last Safavid in 1723 A.D. saw the massacre of over two hundred
thousand Zarathushtis in that City.
a span of just over two hundred years, Zaratushtrianism its in birth place had
been diminished severely through systematic killing, forced conversion, and
loss of livelihood. Heavy Jizya tax
imposed on per-head of Zarathushtis new born
to the very old, was a crashing burden to be borne by the youth and the
middle age segment of the community. Loss of their basic rights, and systematic disenfranchisement by the
State took a heavy toll on the remaining Zarathushtis. Not only were they struggling economically,
they were also suffering on other fronts such as education.
this time, a growing number of families were fleeing Eastward to the friendly
shores of India to join those who had left earlier.
The flight of one Zarathushti family from Isfahan to India at the beginning of the Safavid
rule was to have a great significance in the context of saving and the uplifing
of the few thousand surviving Zarathushtis in Iran in the latter part of the 19th
century. A descendent of this
migrant family from Isfahan was to be
named Manekji Limji Hateria.
gradual flight of another Zarathushti family from Kerman to the shores of
India centuries later brought several
beautiful Zarathushti brides (sisters) to be married into Parsi families
(descendent of Zarathushtis who had fled Iran) of wealth and prominence in Colonial
These daughters of Iran, GulestanBanu and her sisters were to play a critical
role in financing the rescue mission undertaken by Manekji Hateria, at the time
the plight of the Zarathushtis in Iran was almost reaching the point of no
mid-19th century, Iran had seen the fall of Safavids, the rise of
Nadir Shah, the fall of his family from grace, the rise of his general Karim
Khan Zand and the shifting of the Iranian power base to Shiraz. This was followed by the bloody termination of the
Zand dynasty at the hand of the Qajars Turkic clan following the murder of
Lutf-Ali Khan Zand (Karim’s son) in Kerman.
While the fortunes of the various dynasties in Iran rose and fell, it
was a steep decline for the Zarathushtis in Iran pushed to the edge of
extinction by ever increasing hardship and poverty.
the same time, the fortunes of the Parsis of India was on the rise in the
context of that British colony.
entanglement of Qajaric Iran in European power play was at great cost to Iranian
national pride and sovereignty. One concession extracted by the British and
Russian power bases in the Middle East from the ever corrupt and weak Qajar
central government was special privileges and exemption from Iranian court
system for their citizens traveling or residing in Iran. Manekji Hateria being
from India was considered a British subject and was accorded the privileges and
the freedom of movement granted to the British by the Qajars. The Zarathushtis of Iran were denied their
Conditions of Zarathushtis in Iran and
the Iranian Political
Situation at the time of Manekji Hateria’s Arrival
The condition of the
Zarathushtis in Iran had reached a low point as the 48 year reign of
Nassir-ul-Dinshah was getting
underway. With a population that had dwindled to just over 7000 concentrated
mainly in Yazd and Kerman, the Zarathushtis of Iran were held responsible for
the payment of the annual Jizya tax for a total head count of several hundred
thousand based on the last official
estimation of the number of Zarathushtis during the ending period of the
Safavids a century earlier.
crashing tax burden, the constant humiliation
and physical abuse,
the lack of educational and economical opportunities, and their absolute vulnerability brought on by
the loss of their civil rights and being degraded to second class citizens had
taken its toll on the once proud and prospering Zarathushtis in their homeland.
Measures instituted against them included lack of retribution against any Moslem
found to have murdered a Zarathushti, their having to wear a special costume
for easy identification as a Zarathushti.
They could not leave their mud-brick
houses on rainy days, and had to dismount their donkey whenever a Moslem
appeared on the scene. Edward Browne
reports witnessing an official in Yazd having tied a Gaber (Zarathushti) man to
one tree and a dog to another tree for public lashing of both.
hard pressed community was in need of a miracle to be pulled out of its misery.
Qajars who ruled Iran during that period, were a Turkic tribe. They did not show much respect for the
Persian populous over whom they ruled, and their point of reference was always
their own Qajar tribe. They did not
constitute any federal army (likely not expecting to get any loyalty), and
relied mainly on the warriors of the Qajar tribes for their own
protection. The Qajars viewed Iran as
their personal possession, and would typically auction the governorship of the provinces
to the highest bidders. The founder of
the Qajar dynasty, Agha Mohmmad Khan was a
ruthless individual. He was followed by the inept Faht-Ali Shah who lost
large stretches of territory in Northern Iran to the Russians.
whose rule coincided with the arrival of Maekji Hateria in Iran, was very much
helped by his wise and nationalistic prime-minister, Mirza Taqi Khan Amir
Kabir. Compared to the
Qajar rulers before him Nassir-ul-Dinshah seemed more amenable to improving the
lot of the Zarathushtis and other minorities in Iran. Althought his lavish trips to Europe and extravagant spending
pushed the economy of Iran to the point of bankruptcy. As a rule, the Qajars
maintained good relation with the Shiiat clergy establishment and did not take
any steps to interfere with the clerics’ activities in return for their
was a steady decline for the Qajar dynasty past Nassir-ul-Dinshah until the
replacement of Ahamd shah, the last Qajar (lived most of his rule in self-exile
in Switzerland) by Reza Shah Pahlavi. The constitutional reform aimed at replacing
the absolute power of the Qajar rulers with a parliamentary system of
government came about in the aftermath of Nassir-ul-Dinshah’s assassination. The Zarathushtis of Iran3 played an active role in ushering in
reform. The Jahanian trading house was
one of the financiers of the revolutionary movement that brought about
Hateria's Arrival in Iran
was born in Surat, India, in 1813, and was only 5 years old when his family left
for Bombay. He received quality education in Bombay and mastered a number of
languages including Farsi. The love of
the ancestral land of Iran was woven into the fabric of his being. He was particularly touched by the heroic
struggle of the Zarathushtis who had stayed behind in Iran, and was always
lingering to reach out and help them in whatever way he could.
1853, the wealthy Parsi businessman, Sir Dinshah Petit at the urging of his
wife, Gulestan Banu (referred to above) founded the Society for Amelioration of
the Zarathushtrians of Persia, and created a Persian Zarathushtrian Fund. The
first delegate to be sent by the Society to Iran was Manekji Limji Hateria.
undertook two trips to Iran. His trips
to Iran launched him on his long and arduous rescue mission of the Zarathushtis
of Iran and lasted through the last day of his life.
the year 1854 sailing on a British freight ship at a young age, Manekji for the
first time set sight on Iranian soil and landed at the Persian Gulf port of
Busher. From there he traveled to
Shiraz, and then to Yazd and Kerman where he stayed for a considerable period of time. He traveled on to other parts of Iran such
as Isfahan, Tehran, Tabriz, and acquainted himself with the prevailing
conditions in Iran before returning to Bombay.
seem to have well prepared himself for the trip to his ancestral land. During
his first tour of Iran, Manekji gathered a lot of intelligence about the plight
of the Zarathushtis, became better acquainted with the political realities of
Iran, made the acquaintance of influential people. He financed the construction and restitution of a number
facilities for Zarathushtis of Yazd and Kerman. Soon into his first trip, Manekji realized that the heavy Jizya
tax was the most problematic issue faced by the Zarathushtis in Iran. In reporting back to the Society for
Amelioration of Zarathushtis of Persia, Manekji singled out the Jizya tax as
the biggest evil faced by the Zarathushtis in Iran.
Tehran he purchased a house close to the British embassy and endowed it for the
use of Zarathushtis whom were to come to the Capital. With the help of Sir Henry Rawlinson, the British ambassador he
was finally successful in getting an audience with the Shah after many days of
waiting. Nassir-ul-Dinshah engaged
Manekji in a prolonged conversation and showed interest in finding out what
Zarathushtis believed in. His line of questioning revealed his misconceptions of the Zarathushtrian religion. Manekji was successful in getting partial
relief from the Jizya for the Zarathushtis of Iran.
Tabriz, Manekji met with the then crown
prince Muzafar-ul-Dinshah. He purchased copies of many literary books in
Iran and took them back with him for safe keeping in Bombay. Being an enterprising person, Manekji seem
to have been prepared for contingencies encountered on his trip.
in Bombay, Manekji reported to the Society on the plight of the Zarathushtis of
Iran, and made passionate pleas on their behalf. He also authored two books on his findings before returning to Iran for his last tour
with considerable funding for his rescue mission. Economy of colonial India
being tied to the British economy in comparison to the weak economy of Iran of
that period, meant the funds raised in Bombay would go along way in Iran.
of Manekji’s activities,
Nassir-ul-Dinshaw traveled to Austria, Germany, France and England, thereby
becoming the first Iranian Monarch to set foot on modern Europe. While in London, he met five prominent Parsi
political figures including Dr. Dadabhai Naoroji,
the first member of British parliament from India, and Shapurji Saklatvala who was also elected to the house of
commons. The Parsis lobbied Nassir-ul Dinshah to improve the lot of his Zarathushti subjects
still residing in their ancestral land of Iran. They appealed to the Shah to repeal the much dreaded Jizya tax
that was a crushing burden to the few remaining Zarathushtis, and also to
restore their civil rights and afford them educational and economical rights
in Iran, Manekji got another audience with Nassir-ul-Dinshah and with reference to the favorable views
towards the Zartotshties of Iran he had indicated in London, the kind
consideration of the Shah towards the Zarathushtis, particularly with reference
to restructuring the Jizya tax, and granting them civil rights was sought.
Manekji with help from British and French emissaries was able to prevail over the Shah and
convince him to be viewed by the world
as a magnanimous ruler he needs to safeguard the welfare of all his
subjects. The plea seem to have worked
on Nassir-ul-Dinshah. In time
Nassir-ul-Dinshah came to view Manekji as a confidant, giving Manekji easier
access to the king, thereby enabling him to carry out his reforms aimed at
ameliorating the conditions of Zarathushtis of Iran. It must be noted, that Manekji used his influence to improve the
lot of all minorities including the Jews and Christians. To better appreciate the full scope of
activities of Manekji Hateria, highlights are given below.
Removal of Jizya Tax: Adequate coverage has been given to the evil
of Jizya head tax imposed on the Zarathushtis of Iran, which was a crushing
burden on them. Not only the magnitude
of the tax was overwhelming given the economical conditions of the deprived
minority, but the annual method of collection was even more problematic. The local tax collectors abused their
authority, often engaging in verbal and physical abuse and beating of the
defenseless Zarathushtis. The tax
collectors would routinely loot the household of the Gabers and subject them to
beating and abuse with impunity.
Although a sum total for the Jizya tax had to be sent to Tehran from Kerman and
Yazd, the local governors were responsible for collection and it was at the
mercy of those individuals and their
officials that the treatment of the defenseless Zarathushtis rested.
Manekji’s first action was to get Nassir-ul-Dinshah to grant an immediate
reduction by almost 11%. The second
step was to get the Shah to agree that in lieu of collection from individual
Zarathushtis in Kerman, and Yazd, the annual total sum would be paid directly
from Bombay by the Society for Amelioration of the Zarathushtis of Iran. Nassir-ul-Dinshah finally relented. Manekji realized Nassir-ul-Dinshah’s
agreeing to repeal the direct collection would not necessarily mean that the
local authorities in Kerman and Yazd would discontinue the annual collection. The harassment pattern of the Zarathushtis
which had come to be constitute a source of income for the local tax collection
officials would not come to a sudden stop.
As such, Manekji undertook trips to Yazd and Kerman, carrying gifts for
the local governors and officials, and arranging for some direct payments to them
from the Society. Going that extra mile
meant that important relief was finally in sight for the Zarathushtis of
Iran. Finally Manekji was able to
prevail on the Shah and in 1882 a Royal decree resulting in the abolishment of
Jizya for all minorities of Iran was issued. It was the undoing a great injustices imposed
on the non-Moslem population of Iran for the preceding 1200 year.
Educational Initiative: The
diminished Zarathushti community in Iran lacked educational opportunities. There was limited schooling possibilities to
Iranians at large, with the instructions limited to Islamic studies taught by
the Mullahs. Zarathushtis were denied
the right to schooling, and the only education they could receive was through
One of the other high priorities on
Manekji’s list of initiatives in Iran was availing educational opportunities to
the Zarathushtis based on Western style educational approaches involving the
study of modern sciences, literature, religion education, etc.
Manekji’s initiative to avail educational opportunities to the Zarathushtis in
Iran had three points of focus, establishment of schools, training of qualified
teacher, and enabling the Zarathushti youth to get schooling on a full time
Manekji was able to secure a decree from Nassir-ul-Dinshah, granting permission
to Zarathushtis for establishing schools.
Other minorities were beneficiaries too. Up to 30 schools for boys and girls were established in Yazd and
Kerman through Manekji’s direct or indirect efforts, with most funding coming
from the Society in Bombay. One measure
of the impact of Manekji’s initiative, was that in the early part of the 20th century there were only 974 schools (all for
boys) of all sorts in Iran for a population of 15 million (roughly 1 school for
every 15000 people). At the same time
10,000 Zarathushtis had over 30 schools (both boys and girls) translating to 1
school for every 334 Zarathushtis.
The initiative to find and train qualified teacher meant finding local
teachers, getting qualified teachers from Bombay, identified qualified local
Zarathushtis who could go to Bombay for training. Arbab Keikhosro Shahrokh
(Kerman school teacher and national leader), Master (Ustad) Khodabux, Mirza Borzu Amighi (renown school
prinicpal of the Iran-Shahr Zarathushti High School for Boys in Kerman) were
amongst the ones who received educational training and returned to Iran and
served the educational needs of generation of Iranians, Zarathushtis and
non-Zarathushtis. Mirza Soroush Lohrasp (received his schooling in Beirut),
the renown school principal in Yazd was another fine example of educators
who came in the same tradition and helped educate many Iranian minds both
Zarathushti and non-Zarathushti. Master
Pistonji and Mr. Master were example of educators who came from Bombay to teach
at the Zarathushti schools in Yazd. As
for the local teachers who were recruited, a few of them turned out to have
Bahii sympathies, and when it was uncovered there were abusing their access to
the young Zarathushti minds to win them over to Bahiism, controversy broke out
and some of them had to be dismissed.
In time Manekji’s initiative to train qualified teacher for the
Zarathushti schools paid off as generations of qualified Zarathushtis went to
work with the goal of educating the upcoming Zarathushti and non-Zarathushti
youth of Iran. Keshvar Khanum (the renown school master of Keikhosro
Shahorkh Zarathushtrian Girls High School, Kerman’s first High Schools for girls), Banu Khanum Behzadian (the renown school master of Tehran’s
Anoshiravan Dadgar, Zarathushtrian Girl School to whom even the royalty would
trust their daughters for education) were just a sampling of the many well known Zarathushti educators to come in
the wake of the Manekji’s educational initiatives. Some of the Zarathushti High-Schools have the distinction of
being the first ones to have been established in those cities.
Manekji’s third education related challenge was to enable Zarathushti children
to attend school on a full time basis.
Due to abject poverty many Zarathushti families had no choice, but to
have their children work as farm hands or in other minimal jobs to help with
the payment of the Jizya tax and living
expenses. Manekji had to pay from the
Society’s purse to many of the Zarathushti parents in compensation for the
income their children would have earned by working. That was the only way some Zarathushti
children would be able to go to School on a full time basis. Manekji arranged for some youth to be sent from
Kerman to Yazd and Tehran to be educated. This initiative of Manekji paid in a big way
judging by the number of medical doctors, engineers, educators and other
professionals that subsequently emerged from that small community.
Establishment of Community Infra-structure: Realizing the importance of setting up
formal community infra-structures, Manekji was able to get Royal permission for
the establishment of two Zarathushtrian Associations, one in Kerman and one in
Yazd to look after the interest of the Zarathushtis of those locations. These two associations were to be recognized
by the government. Following the Royal
consent, the Naseri
Zarathushti Anjuman of Kerman
and the Naseri Zarathushti Anjuman of Yazd were established. Manekji served as the first president of
both associations with a group of elders of the communities. The Anjumans became the formal arm of the
community in running the affairs of the upcoming communities, and in making
representation on behalf of the Zarathushtis with the governmental bodies. The Anjumans replaced the informal elder
council that existed before. As the
fortunes of the Zarathushtis in Iran rose the charitable donations to these associations
grew considerably and they became well endowed institutions that could pay for
the upkeep and running of Zarathushti schools and other non-profits
establishments. Sister Zarathushti
Anjuman in other cities, such as Tehran,
Shiraz, Karaj, Isfahan, Ahvaz, and the Zarathushti villages close to Yazd were
Restitution and Establishment of Temples, and Towers of Silence: Manekji was very sensitized to seeing the
towers of silence used by the Zarathushtis in and around Kerman, Yazd in
disrepair and inadequate to meet the needs of disposing the dead bodies. He allocated funds for the construction of
new towers in Kerman, Yazd and close-by villages, and in South East of Tehran
to meet the needs of the Zarathushtis moving to Tehran. As a measure of ensuring that ownership will
not be taken away from the Zarathushti community, Manekji took the step of
getting high ranking Moslem Ayatollahs and cleric in the localities to certify
that the ownership was with the Zarathushti community. Such certificates bearing the stamps of
high ranking Moslem clerics was the closest it came to guaranteeing that ownership of the properties would be
recognized. These documents are of
great historical significance to the community. Other activities of Manekji included getting Zarathushti temples
established in Kerman and Yazd.
Manekji Hateria spent a considerable amount of time amongst his
coreligionists in Iran, the Zarathushtis of Kerman, Yazd & nearby villages,
Shiraz, and the growing community in Tehran.
He observed certain unfortunate
trends had set in with a portion of the Zarathushti community. The consumption of meat had become more
commonplace, some men had multiple wives.
The death observation of dearly departed had become an overwhelmingly
joyous occasion with attendees
Manekji spoke against these trends, created awareness and brought about
reversal of the last two trends.
Another trend that had set in: an increasing number of Zarathushtis in
Iran were not wearing the traditional underwear and cord (Sudreh and Kushti)
considered as outward manifestation of a Zarathushti person. The explanation for this behavior was a
likely result of fanatical Moslems bent on harming and converting the
Zarathushtis would always pick on them and try to displace their Sudreh and
Kushti. In fact when a Zarathushti
would be converted to Islam, he had to spit into the Fire, tear up their Sudreh
and Kushti as proof that they had given up on the old religion. Manekji urged the Zarathushtis to go back to
the use of the traditional Sudreh and Kushti.
were other improvements that came in the wake of Manekji’s overall initiatives
including availing medical care to the Zarathushtis and non-Zarathushtis in
Iran, too many to enumerate here. He
was a personification of the good qualities, Zarathushtra had wished for all
humans to posses. A combination of factors made the work
of Manekji so miraculous and effective.
Other individuals assisted Manekji in his mission. But ultimately it was
Manekji’s superb execution, his effective planned course of action, his fast
thinking and resilience, his
perseverance and positive outlook towards all people, his sincerity and
genuinely that made his miracle work of saving and resurrecting the small
Zarathushti community of Iran such a success story. If he were still around to witness the fruits of his life of
dedication, Manekji could surely take comfort in witnessing how far that
community he helped back on its feet has gone in the short time span since his
rescue mission was launched. Manekji
would have delighted in seeing the great strides the Zarathushtis of Iran have
and how they managed to become the vanguards of building the economy and
developing the resources of their motherland in the short span of time since
his rescue mission was launched giving them a chance to exert themselves.
Manekji Limji Hateria was one man who made a
and it was such a big difference to so many people.
May the example set by him inspire others.
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 “Persia Past and Present,” A.V.W.
Jackson, Macmillan, and Co., New York, 1906
“Manekji Limji Hateria,” Farhang Mehr, FEZANA
Journal,, Winter 2000, 36
 “Parsis and the Indian National
Congress,” Framroze K. Patel, FEZANA journal, winter 2000 issue, 51-52. [It is recorded that a third Parsi
politician who also elected to the British Parliament, Sir Manckerjee Bhowanagree, a member of the
conservative party refused to meet with Nassir-ul-Dinshaw
 “Savad Amoozi va Dabirri dar Deene
Zarathushtra,” (Farsi text), Jamshid Soroushian, Fountain Valley Printing, CA,
 “Memorial of Mirza Soroush Lohrasp, the
Selfless and Giving Educator,” (Farsi Text), Jamshid Pishdadi, 1998
 The addition of the term Naseri is
acknowledgement of Nassir-ul-Dinshah having granted the Zarathushtis the right
to organize the Anjuman
the religion of Zarathushtra lends itself more so to celebrating people’s life and contributions upon their
demise rather than mourning of their death, the excessive celebration must have
been an expression of relief by the survivors that the departed person would
not need suffer anymore the humiliation and the dreadful discrimination the
Zarathushtis were subjected to.
“The Memoirs of Keikhosrow Shahrokh,” edited by Shahrokh Shahrokh & Rashna Writer, The Edwin Mellen Press,
 “Triumph Over Discrimination: The Life Story of Farhang Mehr,” Lylah M.
Alphonse, Regal Press Canada, 2000, 229-236