The Kokni Legacy Project

The Koknis of Cape Town is a community group that started on facebook in 2015. It’s objective is to promote, conserve and preserve Kokni culture, traditions, customs and cuisine that stem from the Motherland of India and were brought to South Africa by our forbears in the 1800’s.

Koknis mainly originate from the western Maharashtra region of India. My own family stems from a village in India called Kalusta. Now many kokni’s in Cape Town come from Kalusta and are known a Kaluskars, but our immediate family is from a very small part of Kalusta called Mawlat, which loosely translated means “where the sun sets”. We are subsequently known as Mawalte. My father was born there and came to South Africa when he was 5 years old. So I am technically, first generation South African from my dad’s side.

The Kokni Legacy project is a spin-off of the KCT, where individuals are responding to the need to publish their legacy through recording biographies of the Kokni forebears. The aim is to publish stories of family members and friends who have played a remarkable role in the Kokni community. History and heritage is so important; not only to preserve and document, but to give us inspiration.

The culminating book “Koknis of South Africa a legacy project”, will apart from biographies contain a list of firsts. They will be compiling a list of firsts in any discipline, professional or not, in the Kokni community and will publish such list in the book for posterity. They invite submissions to this end and when submitting to include, full names of the person is required, speciality or first will be appreciated, village s/he is from and if not alive, then date of death.

The project aims to include all kinds of categories even singers, dancers, artists, many accomplished and which we don’t even know about. This video put together by the project explains in more detail what the project is about.

Details of submissions are available on request and at the end of the footage. You can also contact Nadia Ebrahim:
WhatsApp message – 082 788 4239
Email – koknisalegacyproject@gmail.com

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