The Muslim community during 1920’s was subjected to a period of ignorance and degradation. A community that was lost in finding its place in society. There was no educationists to impress upon the value of education, no politicians to guide them, no leaders of integrity and honesty to show what the community’s position and role in life in Sri Lanka.
It was during this critical period in the history of the Muslim community that the community was fortunate in having a person of great caliber and outstanding ability in Tuan Burhanudeen Jayah. He gave up a lucrative legal career for the sake of the community and took up the principal-ship of Zahira College in the year 1921. A school that started with just 6 teachers and 59 students rapidly increased to 30 and 450 respectively. His impact as a leader of great personality was soon shown in the Institution as it started to throb with life and passion for success. During his period Muslims from all over the country was trying to seek admission into the school. Zahira soon not only became a household name in the house of common Muslims in Sri Lanka but also for some in the regions of the Maldives, Middle East and South Africa where students eyed in seeking admission into Zahira. He then by touching right places of the hearts of the great philanthropists namely, Al-Haj N.D.H Abdul Gafoor and Al-Haj P.B. Umbichy for us today to witness two the magnificent buildings Gaffor Hall and the Umbichy Block.
Mr. T.B.Jayah was not only interested in Muslim education but also was determined to see that Muslims received an adequate share in the administration of the country. Thus he plunged into politics and became a member of the legislative council and later the state council. He was a member of the committee that decided on free education. If Dr. C.W.W. Kannangara is the father of free education. Dr. T.B.Jayah can be considered as the architect who shaped and nurtured it to its true state today. The gratitude of a thousand poor parents will go to him for this act. The yesteryear’s and today’s great personalities in various professions are sprinkled with the names of Muslims, it is solely due to the great and far sighted efforts of Dr. T.B.Jayah.
In the latter stages of his life he spent his time creating cordial relationships between other Muslim countries and Sri Lanka. It was fitting to see that his mortal was buried in the holy land of the sacred soil where the Prophet’s tomb stands. He had been given a state funeral in Medina and the Saudi Arabian flag and the Sri Lankan flag flew with pride as a great personality ceased. A special janaza was prayer was offered in the offered in the Prophet’s mosque and the kabatullah in which a million pilgrims participated. May his soul rest in peace and tranquility.
Did you recently come across flags of Green, White and Maroon attached to vehicles? Wonder why and what? A vehicle Parade was organized and this reflect the lead up towards the ZAHIRA WALK 2012 (1st of December 2012) which will be followed by the CRESCENT LIGHTS CARNIVAL 2012 organized by Zahira College, Colombo. The young and old Zahirians were really making the right noises on the lead up to the Walk. Quite rightly so and indeed this has been one of the most discussed topics in social gatherings around Colombo. As I read, over 5K tickets have already been sold out. That’s right over 5000 tickets sold out. I bet you that there would one hell of crowd to witness the major event.
You know you can’t miss the Walk, with more than 6000+ Zahirians expected to be ready to get on the streets to walk with Green, White, Maroon colours all the way. This walk would consist of a variety of exotic features such Horses, Elephants, stilt walkers, Whip crackers, Vintage Cars, A Helicopter and many more exciting things. This is what is going to make this walk unique and eye-catching. Make sure you if you are a Zahirian don’t miss it. Cause if you do you won’t be able see this much excitement and uniqueness from a walk that has ever been held in our country. This would probably turn out to be the best walk so far.It has the feeling and atmosphere that its going to be Big, very BIG. Colombo do watch out and feel free to witness the streets that are to be filled with a river of green uniqueness.
As the walk end back at the school premises is the beginning of the Crescent Lights 2012 at the college grounds. Tickets are priced at Rs.100/=. Zahira welcomes you all to Crescent Lights 2012. It is going to be filled with DJ’, Cultural Segments, fire works, a stall with 120 years of history of the college and of course an expectation of that you would take part in Crescent Lights 2012. Its going to be a day of fun-filled and excitement which also extends to the next day which would start at 4 pm.In order to make the most of this intense experience Crescent Lights would go on till late night. I’ll be there….hoping to see you there too!!
Are you destined for something great? My view is that everyone is destined for greatness. People just don’t believe in themselves. I have seen and met people who are so awesome that one day they would become great personalities. Sometimes I even question them do you think that you will become who you want to become? Some say, Yes, I will with the brightest smile on their face full of determination that they would come through with their life dream. Some say, I don’t know but if I did it would be great but this world has its things maybe I won’t but hey I won’t give up. Some say, I’m not sure I might not make it. These answers depend on how confident they are, how determined they are and how optimistic they are.
The people I met had different goals like, to be the richest man in the world, to be a Psychologist , to be the CEO of Apple or start his own company and beat Apple , to own of group International Hotels, to be the editor of the Reader’s Digest or start his own International Magazine…. the list goes so on. Do you think these people are those who have already left school, college and universities. Well, I got news for you they are just teenagers of ages 16 or 17. They are my friends who I school together at Zahira College, Colombo. These are not the small stupid goals that we make. These are serious life goals that would one day define the very existence of our life. You see, you really don’t need an age to start dreaming but starting early and mapping our goals early is what I believe is the key to success in life. Even the most timid mind can have widest imagination of things he wants to do and contribute to the amazing thing called life. All they need is some encouragement or even a good friend would do. I’m very glad that I joined Zahira College. I’m glad for list of people in my life who I call my friends and to be honest 90% of my friends are my school friends. We have helped each other find our own destiny and to create a path worth living.
I too have my own dream. I believe that I would definitely achieve my goal. I might have make sacrifices but untimely sacrifices and unwanted sacrifices is all I pray that don’t cross my way. You too, should think big. Think out of box. Be original. I wish you all the best with your goals. You and I are just ordinary people in this ordinary world striving to be someone extra ordinary.