1859 the Karachi Parsi Balakshala was housed in the residence of one
Mr. Dadabhoy Palanji Paymaster. As the Parsi population had increased
by 1863 the school was shifted to a bunglow where the present Seth
Hijikaka's Daremeber stands on Frere Street. A small rental of Rs
20/- per month was levied. But on petitioning the Cantonment authorities,
on whose lands the school stood, the rental was remitted after ten
1869 the school going community seems to have outgrown its building,
for it is noted that a Building Fund was started and a sum of Rs.
1,680/- was collected from the members of the Parsi Community. An
anonymous well-wisher sent Rs. 500/-. To this Seth Shapurji added
The School House
of Rs. 820/-. This brought Building Fund to Rs. 3,000/-. A sum
of 3,000/- from the sale of buildings on the Agiary site, received
from the Trustees of Hirjibhoy Jamshedji Fire temple, was added to
Virbaiji School - 1870
fourth Gatha in the year 1869 Seth Shapurji lost his beloved wife,
Bai Virbaiji in May 1870 Seth Shapurji, who had been so far the greatest
benefactor of the school, offered the autorities the use of his one-storedyed
house on Frere Street valued at Rs. 10,000/- to be used as a school
in lieu of his donation of Rs. 8,000/- towards the Building Fund in
commemoration of his late lamented wife. On 24th September 1870 the
School House was removed from the old Line Sergeant's Bungalow in
Saddar Bazaar (Hirjikaka's Agyari) to the new upper storyed splendid
building presented by Seth Shapurji on condition that the School was
named the Parsi Virbaiji School. The indentures signed on the occasion
are shown in the Appendix.
opening ceremony was performed on 24th September 1870 by the Commissioner
in Sind, Sir William Mereweather. On that occasion in the presence
of distinguished visitors and guests the Hon. Secretary of the School,
Seth Edulji Fakirji Bharucha, read a report on the foundation and
progress of the school. After this, the Parsi Prakash reports, Seth
Phirosha Pestonji Dubash delivered a speech in praise of the founder
of the School, Seth Shapurji Hormusji Soparivala, and the Headmaster
Seth Jamshedji Faramji Master. On declaring open the new school the
Chairman of the meeting presented a "Shawl of Honour" to
Seth Shapuril on behalf of the Parsi Anjuman of Karachi. The meeting
terminated with a speech by the then Educational Inspector Mr. J.
G. Muir appreciating the educational efforts of the Parsis of Karachi.
Building - 1906
great founder retired from active service, traveled widely and died
gloriously at Karachi, on 25th March 1895 at the age of seventy-two.
With the march of time the 1870 building was found insufficient.
By 1904 all negotiations about the piece of land measuring 7324 sq.
yards near the Artillery Volunteers Head Quarters on the Victoria
Road for the School Building and 2400 sq. yards for recreation purposes
It was resolved to hold the "Foundation Stone Ceremony on Monday,
10th October, 1904 at 5 p.m before the members of the Managing Committee,
by Seth Khurshedji Shapurji Soparivla whose late lamented father was
the Founder of the School (it being New Moon) Parsi Roj ASMAN Mah
FARVERDIN 1274 YEZDEGERD SHEHENSHAI.
School Building - 1906
was completed on 24 March 1906, the 11th death anniversary, of the
founder. The opening ceremony was solemnly performed by Seth Khurshedji
in the presence of a distinguished gathering.
The architect in charge was the famous Member of the Society of Architects,
Mr. Moses Somake, and the building contract was given to Messr's Abdulhusein
Alibhai. The M. C. appointed 'Mistry Noor Mahommed Abdulla on Rs.
40/- per month.
It is rather strange that the new building bears the date of 1905
on the outer frontage and also the same date is carved in the Christian
and Yezdezerdi Era on the Assembly Hall Arches. One is at loss to
explain this anomaly as the building was started in 1904 and completed
and opened in 1906 as is borne out by all available records.
of Building Fund
the greatest contribution towards the building fund again came from
the Soparivala Family. The sons of the Founder Seth Khurshedji and
Jamshedji made an offer of Rs.10,000/- (Ten thousand) and the community
raised moneys as under:
Punchayat Garden Fund
Community Mr. B. J. Padshah
Jamshedji Tata Mr. B. J. Padshah
K. & J Soparivala (Besides the 10,000)
of the late Shapurji Soparivala
from P. V. School Fund
Victoria Theatrical Co. Benefit Performance
Theatrical Co's Benefit Performance
Soonabai Pocaji Jeejihoy
were obtained from interest on funds collected, and Rs. 521-4-0 were
again generously paid by M/s K. & J. Soparivala towards the settlement
of the contractor's claim. Mr. Somak elso credited Rs. 28/- towards
" sale of some iron stanchions."