"Creating a spiritual & vibrant community based on the values and practices of the Islamic Shi'a Ithna-Ashari faith by developing the potential of its members, engaging with the wider society and serving the needs of humanity worldwide."
There were hardly any known Khoja family settled in Birmingham before the 1970. After the exodus from Uganda meant families were accommodated in camps in England and resettlement arrangements were being co-ordinated from there. Most Khoja families took it upon themselves to do their own resettlement inquiries. Amongst the principal areas were London, Birmingham and Peterborough.
Thus Birmingham Jamaat has its roots of existence, formally and informally, from the increasing number of families choosing Birmingham for their resettlement location towards the end of 1972.
The first ever gatherings were held at people’s houses where the religious functions for Muharram Safar and Ramadan were conducted. The reciters for majlis, nawhas, marshiyas and duas were our own people.
With slowly increasing numbers the community could not fit in people’s homes. So, in 1973 a house in Chesterton Road was rented to serve as a centre for about two years and was mainly used for gents gatherings whereas the ladies still gathered in Fidahussein Fazal and Asghar Remtullas’ house.
Many elderly people still remember those days with great nostalgia and cherished memories. They were witnessing the birth of a Jamaat and many, rightly so, until today are proud of their contributions to this Jamaat. The Jamaat will never forget these unsung heroes of the early days, those mentioned and those not , for it their perseverance, leadership, guidance and fortitude that saw the birth of the Jamaat to its advanced complex organisation of today.
By 1975, the community had increased even further to justify buying the property on Forest Road. This was a detached house, with the upstairs used for ladies gatherings, and downstairs for the gents. This arrangement went on until 1980. On Sundays and weekdays Forest Road was also used as a Madrasah, for teaching mainly Qur’an and Diniyat.
The purchase of the 6th Forest Road property was financially personally guaranteed by Habib Walji and Fidahussein Fazal. Without their support it would have been difficult to acquire this property. During this time for the main events when the Forest Road property would not accommodate the large congregation, Tindal Hall and Sherborne Hall in Balsall Heath were hired for the gatherings.
By 1977, the community had grown large enough that a purpose built centre was being seriously considered. The Clifton Road construction started in 1980.
By Oct 1981, the Imambarghah buildings were completed. At the same time, the foundation stone for the mosque was laid. The construction of the Mosques was finished in June 1982.
Whilst the mosque building works was near completion, work had been started for the construction o the flats and offices on top of the Imambarghah. These would accommodate the caretaker, transit visitors and also the Jamaat offices. The works finished in June 1982.
There was then a break of about 5 years, before further works were necessitated due to the growing demand s of the Jamaat. An extension of the ladies Imambarghah and to a hall for the nursery was undertaken in Nov 1987, with the foundation stone laid. This was completed in June 1988.
There then followed a period of the purchases of investment properties around the Clifton Road, as part of the overall long term planning for the provision of infra-structure. In 1989 a property on Moseley Road was purchased which now houses the Abbasi Flats. In 1992, the land at the rear of KSIM (cave) building was acquired.
The building on the Runcord Road, which attaches to the Syeda Zainab complex was purchased in 1995. The KSIM (cave) building itself immediately opposite the present centre, was bought in 1996.
The beginnings of the Syeda Zainab project was in Oct 1986. With the opening ceremony in March 1998.