An important Shi‘i Muslim community, the Ismailis as an entity emerged in 765 from a disagreement over the successor to the sixth imam, Jafar al-Sadiq. The Ismailis chose Isma‘il’s and then traced the 'imamat' through Ismailis son Muhammad and the latters progeny. The bulk of other Shi‘i, however, eventually recognised 12 imams, descendants of Isma'ils brother Musa al-Kazim. The two main Ismaili branches in India are the Musta‘lis (Bohras) and the Nizaris (Khojas). The Nizaris, led by the Aga Khan, also have populations in Pakistan, Iran, Central Asia, East Africa, Europe, and North America.

Author

Dr Farhad Daftary

Co-Director and Head of the Department of Academic Research and Publications

An authority in Shi'i studies, with special reference to its Ismaili tradition, Dr. Daftary has published and lectured widely in these fields of Islamic studies. In 2011 a Festschrift entitled Fortresses of the Intellect was produced to honour Dr. Daftary by a number of his colleagues and peers.

 

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Professor Azim Nanji

Professor Azim Nanji serves currently as Special Advisor to the Provost at the Aga Khan University. Most recently he served as Senior Associate Director of the Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies at Stanford University 2008-2010 and also lectured on Islam in the Department of Religious Studies. He was previously the of Director of the Institute of Ismaili Studies from 1998 - 2008. 

 

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