Baby Begum


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Category: Diaspora Date: 28 May 95

In the 1920’s after the last indentured labourers had come to Trinidad, and some who had arrived in the years before were returning to India, many of the states of colonial India were still ruled by royal families. In Savanur, Begum Pasha, a little Muslim princess was dressed in the uniform of a Bombay bodyguard for a children’s fete. She won first prize. She probably didn't even know where Trinidad was, far less that her great grandchildren would be Trinidadians!

Her grand-daughter, Ira Mathur, came to Trinidad  in the 1970's with her mother Zia and father Mahendra Mathur. Ira went to school in Tobago. She grew up and married a Trinidadian whose Indian ancestors had also come from India. They now have two children who, born in Trinidad, are of Indian ancestry. Most of the Indo-Trinidadians came here over the last 150 years. Today, they account for a majority of our population. This week, we celebrate the 150th anniversary of the arrival of Indians in Trinidad & Tobago, and observe the first Arrival holiday on May 30.


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All Articles Copyright Ira Mathur