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High fliers among 22 Muslims awarded in Queen’s birthday honours

17th Jul 2015

Nadine Osman

Deputy Governor of the Bank of England and a leading geneticist are among 22 Muslims celebrating recognition in the Queen’s Birthday Honours last month.

The number of Muslim women honoured has doubled from last year to seven. Deputy Governor of the Bank of England, Dr Nemat Talaat Shafik (only the second female to hold the post) is to be made a Dame for her services to public administration and the global economy. Shafik has previously worked as Deputy MD of the IMF and as Permanent Secretary of DIFD.

DameDame Nemat Talaat Shafik (Photo: Creative Commons)

Clinical pharmacologist, geneticist and  Chair of the NHSPharmacogenetics, Professor Hussein Munir Pirmohamed is to be knighted.

Pirmohamed gained the position of Personal Chair in Clinical Pharmacology at the University of Liverpool in 2001 and went on to become the NHS Chair of Pharmacogenetics in 2007.

He is a member of the Commission on Human Medicines and Chair of its Pharmacovigilance Expert Advisory Group, in addition to the role of Deputy Director for the MRC Centre for Drug Safety Sciences in Liverpool. Pirmohamed also sits on the advisory board for precision medicine company Geneix.

Dr Iftikhar Ahmad Ayaz, OBE has also been awarded an (Commonwealth) Knighthood for his services to Tuvalu (formerly known as the Ellice Islands).

Nusrat Lilan 2Nusrat ‘Pinky’ Lilani, CBE (Photo: Creative Commons)

Food guru, author and motivational speaker Nusrat ‘Pinky’ Lilani is to be made a CBE for her service to women and business.

Lilani OBE is the force behind the annual Women of the Future Awards, the Asian Women of Achievement Awards, the Ambassadors programme, the Inspirational Women’s Network and the Women of the Future summit. CEO of Spice Magic, she runs team building days around the theme of Indian cookery for some of the major corporate.

She is an associate fellow of the Said Business School, Oxford, a Patron of DIL and the Westminster Society and Frank Water. She is an Ambassador for The Tiffany Circle of the British Red Cross and Girl Guiding UK. She is listed as one of the 100 most powerful women in the UK by BBC Radio 4 Women’s Hour and was named by GQ magazine as one of the 100 most powerful women networkers in the UK.

She told The Muslim News, “I was so honoured and thrilled but realised that so many people have been with me on the journey and have helped me get this honour.”

Principal and Chief Executive of Blackburn-based Tauheedul Islam Girls’ High School Hamid Patel is to be made a CBE for services to education. Patel’s decade-long work has led the school to become one of the top schools in the country. In 2014, the school was the recipient of The Muslim News Sankore University award for excellence in Education

Not only is the school recognised for its stunning examination results, being in the top 10% of schools for attainment, it is also a school where students make tremendous progress, again putting the school in the top 10% nationally for achievement. Under his leadership, Ofsted has judged the school to be outstanding on three successive occasions.

In 2013, a group of leading academics commissioned by Trinity Mirror’s Data Unit ranked Tauheedul as the highest among over 3,000 state-funded schools. Unlike Government league tables, which focus on GCSE results, the ranking took into account everything from the expected levels of achievement, quality of teaching, levels of truancy, progression to jobs and university, as well as behaviour.

Designated as a National leader of Education, Patel has worked closely with a number of schools, including community schools, to transform educational outcomes. He is currently leading on developing a national network of Tauheedul Schools.

Speaking to The Muslim News Patel dedicated the gong to the school’s tireless staff who “offer children at our schools an outstanding start in life. It is also thanks to the hard work and effort of Tauheedul students, that we are achieving such exciting things together… The award is an endorsement of the quality of provision within the Muslim faith schools sector.”

Issan Ghazni who is to be awarded an MBE for his public and political service in Nottinghamshire says he is “completely humbled and thrilled” to be included in the honours.

Ghazni is Chair of Nottinghamshire Lib Dems and has been Chair of Ethnic Minority Lib Dems. He has been the party’s National Diversity Adviser. He was a candidate for the European Parliament for the East Midlands in 2014 and PPC for the party in Nottinghamshire East in 2005. Ghazni is recognised for his work in increasing the participation of ethnic minorities in politics.

“Our communities should become fully involved in every aspect of life in Britain. It is only by doing so that we can begin to overcome the barriers of separation and ignorance which can lead to separate lives and separate communities which are isolated from the mainstream” said Ghazni.

He told The Muslim News Muslims “play a huge role in the political, economic and social development of the UK. We are an integral part of the country and should be more assertive in demanding our place at the table.”

Amir CheemaAmir Cheema, MBE (Photo: Scout Movement)

Scout Leader Amir Cheema has been awarded the MBE for his services to the Scout Movement and for his community work.

Cheema is a volunteer Scouting manager in Bristol and also holds a national Scout volunteer role. For the past 16 years, he has worked to establish the first Muslim Scout Fellowship across the UK, the result of his work has resulted in twenty Scout Groups opening.

Having seen the opportunities Scouting gave his own children, Amir volunteered as a leader with the Scout Movement. He now travels across the UK to support the development of new groups, offering training to new communities setting up groups for the first time. His work has enabled many young people to become part of a movement that would otherwise not have been available to them.

Cheema said: “It’s a massive privilege to accept this award on behalf of the fantastic volunteers from the Muslim Scout Fellowship and my Brunel Scout District, who work tirelessly to help young people experience the adventure of a lifetime. Helping young people grow and develop through adventurous, fun and purposeful activity is the best way to develop a peaceful and productive society.”

HalimahHalimah Gulzar Khaled, MBE (Photo: Buckingham Palace/ Hamzah Khaled)

Halimah Gulzar Khaled from Nottingham is to receive an MBE for her services to charity and to community relations.

Khaled is currently a councillor in Nottingham, sitting on a number of committees. She is also in the process of launching Al-Nisa charity, which will provide a helpline and education for victims of domestic violence and forced marriages.

Her charity work and community cohesion initiatives span 15 years and in 2002 she founded the Nottingham branch of Wellbeing of Women, a national charity which funds research into reproductive health; to date, she has raised over £100,000. Khaled has won the Daily Mail’s Inspirational Woman of the Year Award in 2010 and the Alliance Boots Community Hero Award in 2008.

Khaled is on the committee for the Nottinghamshire Police’s Prevent Violent Extremism Steering Group and is a fund-raiser for the Nepalese charity PHASE, Macmillan Cancer Support and the Nottingham Hospital’s Trust.

“I would have loved my parents to see this. I want to thank the people that have supported the charity by attending the events over the years – this award is for them,” she told The Muslim News.

Aliya Jafri Azam is also to receive an MBE for voluntary and charitable services to Community Cohesion, particularly through the Al Khoei Foundation. Azam’s has been working for the past twenty-two years in Al Sadiq and Al Zahra High Schools and has coordinated the educational and interfaith activities at the Al Khoei Foundation. She is also involved in intra-faith and inter-faith projects which includes organising football matches, local walks, study days, schools’ projects.

Azam told The Muslim News, “I was honoured, humbled, delighted and grateful’ for the award, this award is for all the organisations that the Al Khoei Foundations works with to build bridges, educating people and fostering mutual trust and cooperation namely: the Religious Education Council for England and Wales, the Christian Muslim Forum, the Football Association, Citizens UK, the London Inter-faith Centre and the London Boroughs Faiths Network and the Three Faiths Forum”.

umar hussainUmar Hussain, MBE (Photo: South Wales Police)

Chief Financial Officer for South Wales Police, Umar Hussain is to be made an MBE for services to Policing, Newport, Gwent. Hussain has financial experience in both public and private sector, including 10 years experience with Gwent Police as Head of Finance and 3 years with Lincolnshire Police as Director of Finance and Administration and over 8 years in private practice and industry.

Hussain provides strategic direction, control and advice on all financial matters within the force, holding responsibility for Force Business Centre, Corporate Finance, Estates & Facilities, Fleet, Procurement and Logistics.

Hussain is a member of the National Police Treasurers Society and National Assets Working group. He is also Police representative on the National Procurement Board (Wales) and Strategic Policing Procurement Board (London). Umar is a member of the Cardiff Metropolitan University Audit Committee.

In a statement to The Muslim News Hussain said, “In my role as Assistant Chief Officer both in Lincolnshire Police and South Wales Police I have been fortunate to have worked alongside some very dedicated officers who have been recognised nationally for their contribution to policing. I have never imagined that my efforts would warrant a similar accolade and whilst it may sound cliché it is nevertheless a humbling experience to have been nominated for and then awarded an MBE.”



KBE & Damehoods: Prof Hussein Munir Pirmohamed, for services to Medicine (Merseyside); Dr Iftikhar Ahmad Ayaz, OBE, For services to Tuvalu and Dr Nemat Talaat Shafik, Deputy Governor of the Bank of England for services to Public Administration and the Global Economy, (London).

CBE: Hamid Patel, CEO, Tauheedul Education, for services to Education and Nusrat Mehboob Lilani, Founder and Chair, Women of the Future, for services to Women in Business.

OBE: Harris Bokhari, for services to Young People and Interfaith Relations (Surrey) and Dr Hania Morsi Fadl, Founder and CEO Khartoum Breast Cancer Centre Sudan, for services to improving healthcare for women in Sudan.

MBE: Aliya Jafri Azam, for voluntary & charitable services to Community Cohesion, particularly through the Al Khoei Foundation (London); Amir Aziz Cheema, for services to Young People through the Scout Movement (Bristol); Arif Mukadam, Admin Officer HMRC, for services to Combating Tax Credits Error & Fraud & voluntary service to the community (Blackburn); Capt Amir Akbar Esmiley, Surveyor in Charge Maritime & Coastguard Agency, for services to Seafarers (Hampshire); Halimah Gulzar Khaled, for services to charity and to community relations (Nottinghamshire); Issan Ul-Haque Ghazni, for public & political service (Nottinghamshire); Mohammed Aslam Hanif, for services to Community Relations in Teesside (North Yorkshire); Mohammed Umar Hussain, Assistant Chief Officer South Wales Police, for services to Policing, Newport, Gwent; Zia Uddin Chaudhry, for services to interfaith relations in Merseyside and Rimla Akhtar, former Chair Muslim Women’s Sport Foundation, for services to Equality & Diversity in Sport.

BEM: Bashir Hasham, for services to the community (Orkney); Sadia Rahanara Hussain, for services to Diversity Inclusion and the community ( Essex) and Zafran Mohammed, Director All 4 Youth for services to Young People and the community (Birmingham).

QPM: Nadeem Fazil Mir, Detective Superintendent (Retired), Temporary Chief Inspector, Greater Manchester Police.

MVO: Mohammed Saleh Faisel Choudhry, for services to the Royal Household.

Other members of minority faith communities awarded this year includes 20 members of Hindu and Sikh communities (1 Knighthood 3 CBE, 2 OBE, 10 MBE, 4 BEM) and 17 members of the Jewish community (2 Knighthoods, 4 CBE, 5 OBE, 5 MBE, 1 OCH).

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