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Nurjehan Mawani

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2003 4:41 am    Post subject: Nurjehan Mawani Reply with quote

For release November 19, 2003

Appointment of Senior Advisor to the President of the Canadian
Centre for Management Development.

Janice Cochrane, President of the Canadian Centre for Management
Development (CCMD) today announced the appointment of Mrs. Nurjehan
Mawani as Senior Advisor on Diversity to the President of the Canadian
Centre for Management Development (CCMD).

Through her varied work experience, Mrs. Mawani has acquired a unique
perspective on diversity. Combined with her dedication to inclusiveness and
shared citizenship, it will equip her well for her new role as Senior Advisor on
Diversity at the CCMD. Under her mandate, she will help to reinforce the government's commitment to
building a Public Service that reflects cultural, linguistic, regional and social diversity. She will also be
advising the Clerk of the Privy Council and the Secretary of the Treasury Board on issues related to
creating an inclusive Public Service.

This appointment is effective November 20, 2003

Biographical notes on Mrs. Mawani.

CCMD Press Office: (613) 943-5414
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 21, 2003 4:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Biography - Nurjehan Mawani, C.M.

Nurjehan Mawani was born and raised in Mombasa, Kenya. She attended the
Inns of Court School of Law in London, England, was called to the Bar at
Lincoln's Inn in 1968 and admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of
England and Wales in 1973.

After moving to Canada, Mrs. Mawani practised law with a Vancouver firm,
and was called to the British Columbia Bar in 1985. In 1986, she was
appointed Vice Chairperson of the former Immigration Appeal Board and was
subsequently named Deputy Chairperson of the then newly established
Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB). She became the Chairperson and Chief
Executive Officer in October 1992.

Ms. Mawani’s pioneering work on gender-related persecution has brought
Canada international recognition and has been adopted by many other
countries. While at the IRB, Mrs. Mawani established effective relationships
with external partners, and played a leading role within the administrative
justice system in Canada.

In 2001 Mrs. Mawani was appointed Commissioner of the Public Service
Commission of Canada. During her tenure she demonstrated strong
commitment to excellence and to the creation of an inclusive, representative
federal Public Service. In addition, she helped to guide the Commission
through a time of internal transformation to prepare it for the implementation of
the recently passed Public Service Modernization Act and its increased focus
on oversight of the Public Service staffing system.

Throughout her career, Mrs. Mawani has been active in a number of
professional and voluntary organizations, including the International
Association of Refugee Law Judges (founding member), the Aga Khan
Foundation Canada, and the Laurier Institution. She is the Co-Chair of the
Ottawa Chapter of the International Women's Forum, and a member of the
Algonquin College Board of Governors.

Mrs. Mawani is the recipient of numerous awards in recognition of her contribution to public service and
to her profession, among them the Order of Canada and the Outstanding Achievement Award of the
Public Service of Canada.

Mrs. Mawani is married and has two children.
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2004 4:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

University of Ottawa 2004 Spring Convocation - Honorary Doctorates

Nurjehan Mawani
Nurjehan Mawani is the Senior Advisor on Diversity at the Canada School of Public Service. As the Chairperson of Canada's Immigration and Refugee Board, Nurjehan Mawani issued the groundbreaking "Guidelines on Women Refugee Claimants Fearing Gender-Related Persecution". These guidelines, the first of their kind in the world, led other nations to change their policies to recognize and take into account the unique challenges faced by refugee women.

Making a difference

My Canadian Journey
for delivery by
Nurjehan Mawani, CM
Senior Advisor on Diversity
Canada School of Public Service

University of Ottawa 2004 Spring Convocation
National Arts Centre

Monday, June 7, 2004
(Check against delivery/ priorité au discours prononcé)

Madame le chancelier, monsieur le recteur, distingués membres du Sénat, chers diplômés, parents et amis,

Je vous remercie avec gratitude de l'honneur que vous me faites, un honneur qui revêt une grande importance pour moi. En effet, c'est cette même université qui, il y a treize ans, m'a accordé le privilège de donner la première Conférence commémorative Gordon Henderson. Depuis, les liens que j'ai tissés avec le corps professoral et les étudiants me procurent toujours une profonde satisfaction.

C'est aussi avec fierté et modestie que j'accepte cette reconnaissance de l'Université d'Ottawa, car cette institution, l'université canadienne, symbolise ce que nous chérissons en ce pays : son engagement envers le bilinguisme et le respect de la diversité.

It is thus not at all surprising - and from my perspective, quite wonderful -- that graduates from this University go on to participate actively in all aspects of Canadian civic life: from international affairs and development, to private enterprise, to our vast and highly developed NGO sector, to the education of young and not-so-young minds. ..the list is endless. But perhaps of most immediate relevance to me, is your participation in the Public Service of Canada.

I single out the Public Service of Canada because of my personal commitment as Special Advisor on Diversity in the Public Service. I believe that the graduates who come to the Public Service from this particular school are role models for us all because so many are bilingual and represent the diversity of Canada.

Our continuing resolve is to ensure that our Public Service is inclusive, where merit includes fair access to opportunities, and where no one is excluded for reasons that have nothing to do with their ability to do the job.

When your Rector, Gilles Patry called me to tell me of this singular honour, he also mentioned to me that I would be speaking to you. I thought that I might best make use of these precious few minutes by sharing with you a little bit about my self, and about the formative events of my life that resolved into a commitment to fight for equality.

Growing up in Africa, I never imagined that I would be standing before you one day for this very special occasion. That I would be in Canada in the first place! I was born in Kenya, which at the time was part of the British Empire. Growing up in Kenya, I was acutely aware of the inequities around me; schools were segregated, as were hospitals, sports facilities, and even restaurants. This was colonial Africa - where differences were highlighted and exploited. We fell prey to this mentality and succumbed to the loss of dignity that accompanied it. There was a café in Mombasa that I particularly remember - it had the best samosas in town. When I was a child, our Sunday outing was not complete without a stop at this café. The only problem was that we were not allowed to be served inside, as it was for Europeans only. So we sat outside in our cars, eating the samosas and not questioning the indignity of it.

For me, the turning point was the opening up of the Aga Khan institutions, including my school, to people of all races. This was in defiance of official Colonial policy which mandated racially segregated schools. It was a revolutionary idea and its impact was very far-reaching: we began to understand that things could be different - that the status quo was not right and that it could, and should be changed.

As I became increasingly politically aware during my teens, I became conscious of the enormous disparities in the treatment between men and women, rich and poor, and African, Asian and European. This changed me, and more than anything, I wanted to make a difference.

I was consumed with finding a way to redress some of the wrongs that were so obvious. I wanted to become either a lawyer or a teacher - I saw both of these as ways to bring about change. As it turned out, at the age of 17, I chose law - not because I thought the law was loftier than teaching, but because I wanted to follow a boy half-way across the world -- and law school gave me a legitimate reason for persuading my parents to let me go to England! I soon realized, though, that my passion for advocacy was best served by legal training and the rigour that accompanies it.

The grand plan had been to return home and play a role in the newly independent Kenya. However, the political situation changed and it was no longer feasible to follow my dream in Kenya. For those of you who are wondering what happened to "the boy" - let me relieve you by telling you that part of the dream came true - and I married him when I was 21 and he is here with me today!

I started my legal career in England. I originally qualified as a barrister and was called to the Bar at Lincoln's Inn (in 1968). At that time, however, I found it virtually impossible for someone with my profile (dark hair, woman, not from the establishment) to have access to Chambers from which I could practice my chosen career.

In fact, I ended up retraining, and qualified as a solicitor which was much more acceptable for someone with my profile, since I could sit in an office safely behind the scenes. The irony was that I would then meet clients and brief other barristers - white males approved by the establishment -- who would then plead for my clients in Court, using my research and my legal advice!

My chance to be an advocate and an activist came through my volunteer work.

At the age of 26, while expecting my first child, there was a turning point, which laid the foundation for my future. We were experiencing the fallout of the Uganda exodus. Thousands of Ugandans of Asian origin lost everything overnight, because Idi Amin, the new dictator of Uganda, decided they had to go. At the time, I was a lawyer and a volunteer with the Ismaili National Council for the UK at the time. We saw the need for establishing an organized response to help deported Ugandans, who had been rendered stateless. Families had been torn apart, with some ending up in camps in Europe, while others were airlifted to Canada.

Part of our response was reunite them and help them to resettle. Even at the time I remember being impressed by the openness and generosity of the Canadian government and the Canadian people in welcoming them to this wonderful country.

This early success in being able to use my knowledge and professional training to help other gave me tremendous confidence and the desire to do more. I was equipped for life to deal with sometimes intractable bureaucracies, obscure policies, and a variety of special interests. All of these skills would hold me in very good stead both in my professional and volunteer activities.

Once in Canada, my big break came when one of the partners at my law firm, who knew about my volunteer work, proposed my name for a position on the former Immigration Appeal Board. The idea was that I would take a sabbatical for two years and then go back to practice. Well, apparently I am still on sabbatical because that was 1986 and now it's 2004 and the rest is history!

You may ask what has kept me in the system - it's the same theme - the concern for the public good and the potential to make a difference. The former IAB was transformed into the Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada's largest tribunal, which makes over 40,000 decisions annually on refugee and immigration matters. The opportunity to be the first woman (and a visible minority at that) to chair the IRB literally put me on the "other side" so to speak. I was now in the position of those that I had previously worked hard to influence and I now had the levers to actually make change.

My proudest achievement was getting gender-related persecution recognized internationally as a ground for claiming refugee status under the Geneva Convention. You see, previously, it was only possible to ask for refugee status on religious or political grounds, but that left out in the cold many women who were persecuted just because they were women: whether by the practice of female genital mutilation, or by abusive male family members.

À la conclusion de mon mandat de sept ans à titre de présidente de la CISR, j'ai été nommée commissaire de la Commission de la fonction publique du Canada, où j'ai encore bénéficié de la possibilité de poursuivre les efforts pour instaurer une fonction publique diversifiée et inclusive.

Depuis novembre dernier, j'occupe mon poste actuel, qui est de réaffirmer l'engagement du Canada de créer une fonction publique qui est le reflet de la diversité culturelle, linguistique, régionale et sociale du Canada.

Pierre Trudeau a déjà affirmé que la chance est le fruit de la rencontre des possibilités offertes et du travail. J'estime avoir été très chanceuse dans ma vie, grâce au grand nombre de possibilités que j'ai eu de faire une différence. J'ai bénéficié ici au Canada de ces possibilités, qui ne m'étaient pas offertes au Kenya ou en Angleterre. Récemment, lorsque Son Excellence l'Aga Khan a affirmé que le Canada était un modèle à suivre pour le reste du monde, je crois qu'il parlait de l'esprit d'équité et des valeurs civiques qui animent la population et les institutions sociales de notre pays.

This country have given me and my family a very satisfying professional and personal life, and I wish the same for you, the Class of 2004, as you venture forth into your unique futures. You have had an excellent education here at the University of Ottawa, which will put you in good stead to confront - and surmount - the challenges life will throw before you. Believe in yourself, and in your ability to make a difference. Never be afraid to challenge yourself and the world around you. If you have a vision, however grand or modest, pursue it, and surely luck will come your way.

Merci beaucoup de m'avoir invitée à partager avec vous cette journée tout à fait spéciale.
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2005 2:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rai Saheba Nurjehan Mawani has been appointed AKDN Representative for Kyrgyzstan. Nurjehan will be leaving for Bishkek on Monday, January 24th, 2005.
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PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 9:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

29 May 2008 AKIpress

The first Central kindergarten of Kyzyleshme was officially opened today in the presence of Deputy Governor of Osh oblast, Aziza Turdueva, Deputy Minister of Education and Science, Anatoliy Ivannikov, Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) Representative for the Kyrgyz Republic, Nurjehan Mawani, and Akim of Chonalay rayon, Abdimanap Myrzabekov, representatives of local administration, parents, teachers and other guests, AKDN told AKIpress.

“The opening of a new kindergarten is a very special event. It is a moment of pride and hope for the parents, teachers and the whole community. It symbolizes a collective commitment to the future and we are very pleased to be partners in this initiative,” emphasized Nurjehan Mawani, the AKDN Representative for the Kyrgyz Republic.

The Mountain Societies Development Support Program (MSDSP KG) of Aga Khan Foundation started its Early Childhood Development (ECD) program in this village in 2005 by establishing the first satellite kindergarten within the secondary school. There had been no access to ECD in this village prior to this. As a result of the partnership between MSDSP and the community, 15 children were able to have access to early childhood education for the first time.

This partnership has broadened with the construction of the first Central kindergarten providing access to 120 children of pre-school age in the village. Funded by AKF and supported by community contribution (both labour and monetary), MSDSP KG spent almost 2.5 million soms on the construction of the Central kindergarten and provision of equipment, learning materials and other supplies. As part of the ECD program, the training of kindergarten teachers has already been implemented.

Now the new Central kindergarten of Kyzyleshme village will enroll 80 children and together with the satellite kindergarten will provide access to all 120 children in the village. The shift system model pioneered by MSDSP KG will double the coverage of the number of children who need access to ECD. This initiative also ensures that children from disadvantaged families are provided with equal access to this program.

“The opening of a new kindergarten is a very special event. It is a moment of pride and hope for the parents, teachers and the whole community. It symbolizes a collective commitment to the future and we are very pleased to be partners in this initiative,” emphasized Nurjehan Mawani, the AKDN Representative for the Kyrgyz Republic.

On the basis of a Memorandum of Understanding signed in April 2006 between the Ministry of Education, Science and Youth Policy and Aga Khan Development Network, Aga Khan Foundation continues to support the development of the education sector in Kyrgyzstan. By the end of December 2007, AKF had completed the construction or rehabilitation of 17 central and 33 satellite kindergartens in Osh and Naryn oblasts. AKF also engages in the training and upgrading of skills of both teachers and kindergarten supervisors which stress innovation and interactive methods of learning.
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 10, 2018 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote


Four years from FIR, cops make first arrest in real estate fraud case; Canadian businessman and his wife’s Rs 15 crore was used to buy land parcels which are now worth little over Rs 500 crore

It has taken over four years for Pune cops to act on an FIR. The case pertains to a Canada-based businessman who was allegedly swindled out of Rs 15 crore. He had made a foray into the real estate business in Pune around 2007, only to realise that his company’s funds were being used by one of his directors to buy land parcels in his own name and that of his family members. An FIR with cheating, fraud, forgery, breach of trust, among other charges was filed in September 2013 and was gathering dust ever since. It was only on Saturday that the first arrest was made in the case.

Nizar Mawani and his wife Nurjehan had plans of investing in land in India. Nizar holds citizenship of Canada and the United Kingdom, while his wife is diplomatic representative to His Highness the Aga Khan in Afghanistan.

“Nizar Mawani was in India for ayurvedic therapy when he met Hanif Somji, who was in real estate then. Mawani was looking for a house so his family could also come and stay with him. That is how he met Somji. Since Mawani’s ancestors hail from the same region as Somji and both spoke the same language, they instantly hit it off,” said Iqbal Shaikh, Mawani’s representative in India.

It was over these meetings, Shaikh claims, that Mawani decided to set up his business in India. “Since his family was originally from India, his love for the country never diminished. Somji suggested that there were huge profits to be made in land dealings and that he must invest here. That is when it was decided that Mawani would register companies here and invest. That was in 2006. By 2007, several companies were being formed, bank accounts had been opened and money had started coming in,” said Shaikh.

“Sometime in 2010, Mawani realised that while money had been withdrawn from company bank accounts, land parcels had been acquired in Somji’s name or in the names of his relatives. That is when Mawani decided to remove Somji from his position as director from all the companies,” said Shaikh. Over the next couple of years, Somji filed accusations against Mawani and Shaikh with the Anti- Terrorism Squad (ATS) claiming that they were bringing terror money into India. “I had to explain to ATS sleuths that Mawani and his wife were from a respectable family and had nothing do with terror outfits. Next there was a criminal case in Koregaon Park police station, which too has been closed now,” added Shaikh.

If Shaikh is to be believed, Somji has acquired large tracts of land using Mawani’s money in Pune and Nashik. “The value of land parcels bought adecade ago at throwaway prices has now appreciated. They are now worth close to Rs 500 crore,” he said.

Finally in 2013, Shaikh filed a criminal complaint in Pune court on behalf of Mawani. He sought that a case of dishonest misappropriation of property, criminal breach of trust, fraud, forgery, disappearance of evidence and criminal intimidation under sections 403, 406, 420, 463, 467, 468, 469, 201, 109, 504 and 506 of the Indian Penal Code be filed against Somji. The same year the Koregaon Park police filed the FIR.

“However, despite the FIR the police did not investigate or make any arrests. I was left with no choice but to approach the Bombay High Court (HC),” said Shaikh. Last year, Pune cops assured the HC that the investigation would be initiated.

Immediately after that, the case was taken away from senior inspector of the Koregaon Park police station and handed over to assistant commissioner of police Jayashree Gaikwad. On Saturday, ACP Gaikwad made the first arrest in the case. She nabbed Hasnen Roopani, who is believed to be an aide of Somji. He was produced in court and remanded in police custody for the next four days.

When Mirror got in touch with Ravindra Sengaonkar, additional commissioner of police, the latter confirmed the arrests and said, “There was an application regarding the case when I took over in May and I appointed ACP Gaikwad of Lashkar Division to investigate the matter. We are still investigating the case.”

When Mirror spoke to Hanif Somji he denied all allegations and in fact had a completely different story to tell. “We belong to the same community and we got close only after he assured us that he and his wife are very close to our religious leader the Aga Khan. My wife and I are the founder directors and 100 per cent shareholders of the nine companies we started and Mawani was just an investor in the companies whose loan is to this day shown in the balance sheet filed. He was to be given interest when the companies make profit. We had given him our shares as security against the investment which he had made in our company in the form of a loan. In 2009 without quorum he got his wife on board as a director,” Somji said. “Mawani has misdirected the government at every step and even influenced the company auditors and changed the entire scenario to favour him.”

He further added that there is a procedure to take over shares which requires a bunch of permissions which were never taken. Somji had filed a case against Mawani in the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) in May 2013, before Mawani’s FIR was registered in September 2013. He believes that it was in 2010, when Mawani realised that the property prices were rising, that he decided to do all of this.

“I will be happy with whatever the judiciary will decide, as I know that I have all my papers in place. The final hearing of the NCLT is also this month,” Somji concluded.

█ Mawani has misdirected the government at every step, influenced the company auditors and changed the entire scenario to favour him

— Hanif Somji
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