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98. Shaikh Suleman al-Hajj - page 404

He was born possibly in 1828, and was the first Mukhi for the Salamia Jamatkhana in Syria. It is related that a Syrian Ismaili delegation visited India in 1887 in search of the Imam of the time, finally reached Bombay and recognized the Imam. Mukhi Shaikh Suleman was also one of the members of the delegation. When he returned to Syria, he called a grand meeting at which all the leading Syrian Ismaili Shaikhs were present. He announced that their quest had been successful and that the Imam of the time had been found. Amid a general upsurge of enthusiasm, many of those present declared themselves ready to believe that Sultan Muhammad Shah was the true Imam. He had to face hurdles from those who had proclivity towards the Momin Shahis. He however remained steadfast and succeeded.
In an official letter of 1890, which was the first for the Syrian Ismailis, the Imam had declared his appointment to the office of Mukhi. The Imam also designated Amir Ismail bin Muhammad as his Estate Agent in Salamia. Mukhi Shaikh Suleman was a devoted person and helped the Ismailis with his own means and materials. In about 1892, the Imam also invested him with the title of Varas, the first among the Syrian Ismailis to be honored with this title. He died in 1895 while his visit to Bombay. His companion, Shaikh Ahmed al-Muhammad al-Hajj (1835-1905), was appointed the new Mukhi. Before returning to Syria, he was exhorted the doctrines and rituals of the Ismailis to be introduced in Syria.

Shaikh Suleman al-Hajj

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