City Landmarks – Mama Parsi School


Whenever I speak to Mamaians – the alumni of Mama Parsi School – I notice a hint of pride in their eyes for their association with Mama Parsi School. In today’s Karachi, with its decaying institutions, it is a rare gesture which speaks volumes about quality of the school and the values it has inculcated in its students.

Parsis make an important part of social fabric of Karachi. Most of the Parsi families migrated to Karachi around mid of 18th century and immediately made their mark on the landscape of then fast growing city. One of the earliest buildings commissioned by Parsis were that of ‘Balak Shala’ – school for children – in 1859. The unmatchable generosity of Parsis is well documented and again it was mainly through donations that the school was built and run. The ‘Balak Shala’ has transformed into an institution of highest quality today, known popularly as Bai Virbaijee Soparivala Parsi School on Abdullah Haroon Road. This is where Mama Parsi School was conceptualized originally.

With growing enrollment of girls around turn of 19th century, the elders of Parsi community decided to set aside funds for a separate girls school. Again it was magnanimity of Parsi community which made it possible to build a magnificent school on a prime location. The school was named after Khan Bahadur Ardeshir H. Mama who donated generously for the construction of school. Other notables who funded generously include the Trustee of Late Seth N N Pochaji and the Eduljee Dinshaw Family.

I reach the school building on a Saturday morning. The first thing that catches my attention is impressive facade of the building. This is the thing with the people and buildings of yore. The commitment, vision and generosity of Karachi’s founders made it possible for Karachi to sustain millions of souls for times to come. Even when they built something out of charity, they made it world class, a beauty to behold, an inspiration for generations to come. So is the case with Mama Parsi School!

The pillars in front of reception and the side hall add to the impressive facade. The reception area takes your breath away. The windows, the staircases, the well manicured plants and the furniture match the overall aesthetics of the building. As I walk its corridors I saw an army of staff, cleaning the entire place diligently. The pride with which students associate themselves with the school transcends to its staff also.

Many a schools were built later in the city but people still prefer to send their daughters to Mama Parsi School despite obvious issues associated with its location on a road which transpired to be the busiest thoroughfare in the city. So much was the demand for admissions that a separate wing was added in 1991. From grandmothers to grand daughters, Mama Parsi has played pivotal role in educating generations of Karachi women and while doing so they have maintained highest standards of learning.

As Mama Parsi turns a century old soon, I can only imagine the pride that the founders of the school would have felt at the role it has played in the lives of Karachi Wallas.

























Tags: ,

Categories: City Landmarks

Stay in touch

Subscribe to our RSS feed and social profiles to receive updates.

11 Comments on “City Landmarks – Mama Parsi School”

  1. Anonymous
    December 21, 2016 at 8:47 am #

    Ah! Such nostalgia !!
    It’s been almost 17 years that I have passed out of my Alma mater (and eventually left Karachi too) …. and feels wonderful to look at these pics !!!
    It’s true… the Mama pride lingers on 🙂

  2. December 21, 2016 at 12:25 pm #

    This can’t be explained in a much better way, truly this pride stays with us till the end. Totally nostalgic at the moment :’)

  3. Anonymous
    December 29, 2016 at 10:33 am #

    This is so beautiful! These pictures!! What a recollection. Thank you! 🙂

  4. Nancy Yazdani
    December 29, 2016 at 8:27 pm #

    Nostalgia all the way!! What memories!! I salute my Alma Mater and will keep saluting it for as long as I live! I departed from there in the year 1970. Will make every effort to attend the Centennial celebrations!!!!

  5. January 9, 2017 at 10:25 am #

    Your blog is brilliant 🙂 I love how you cover Karachi and all its details. And this post is especially close to my heart, being a Mamaian myself.

  6. January 9, 2017 at 10:31 am #

    Your blog is brilliant 🙂 I love the way you cover every little detail of Karachi. And this post is especially close to my heart, being a mamaian myself.

  7. January 9, 2017 at 10:32 am #


  8. Sara
    August 29, 2017 at 9:29 pm #

    You’ve made me so nostalgic. Although my childhood was far from perfect, looking at these pictures I am transported to these corridors, laughing and talking with my school friends, our greatest worry the upcoming house test.

    Thank u for the post

  9. Naureen
    August 30, 2017 at 5:35 am #

    It’s been more than 30 years that I completed my matriculation from mama nostalgic that it brings years to the eyes.the mama pride will always be there

  10. Rasheeda Shakoor
    August 30, 2017 at 5:11 pm #

    Beautiful pictures… it took me down the memory lane of the 10 beautiful years spent which are as clear a picture as in those beautiful years.. Proud to be a Mamaian 👍😊😍

  11. Tehmi Patel. (Vakil maiden name)
    February 14, 2018 at 10:53 pm #

    What can I say! I graduated from this beautiful house of knowledge in 1955.
    My first teacher was MISS SHIRINBAI. A lady who commanded respect by her shere Presence. Progressed on to Miss Jerbai who taught Gujrati and then on to Miss ANKLESARIA a beautiful tall lady. She like Miss Shireenbai and Miss Jerbai wore a sari and commanded respect by her mere presence. Teaching us English, Maths, and Needlework.
    Progression on to all subjects in English and Of course time to learn Urdu which was taught by a very petite beautiful Muslim lady. She herself looked like a school girl.
    Time marched on, by the time I was in the 6th Standard we were taught life skills like laundry by Miss Divecha who made sure that the table napkins were well washed, ironed and starched. Singing was ably taught by Mrs Jacobs and cooking by Miss Jerbai. HISTORY GEOGRAPHY MATHS ENGLISH NATURE STUDY AND SCIENCES. Mrs Rodrigues was our needlework teacher. And later Miss Rabadi took over the task of teaching sowing, knitting and crocheting.
    Miss Mani Contractor always said entertain so that the silver is aired and polished.
    I have been fortunate to have travelled to many a wonderous places around the world and seen many a beautiful sights. Every time I see something that I would have learnt about I BLESS my ALMA MATER and think about Miss Engineer our Geography teacher who just loved teaching the subject. Places like Alaska, glaciers, ice sheets and ice floes.oh to have learnt about them and to actually see them in real life. AMAZING!
    Whoever reads this I would like to add. There are no institutions that prepare a person like this great institution THE MAMA PARSI GIRLS HIGH SCHOOL.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: