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Ashok and Sudha Nairobi

My Name is Sudha Shah. I am married to Ashok Shah and I currently live in Nairobi. The relationship of Sobhag Raichand and I (Sudha) originally started due to our parents. Sobhag originally stayed in a timber property. Then after our parents bought a piece of land where they built two identical properties in Meru. Meru was previously a village that developed into a town. Both the properties had a shop on the ground floor and living accommodation on the first floor. There was a small wall that was dividing the 2 houses, so we used to climb on a stool to talk to each other, exchange food and even listen to music being played at each other’s houses. We used to play many outdoor games together as well. Attached is the photograph of our house with the shop below and a photo our families.

Sobhag and I (Sudha) attended the same school called Meru Primary School. I was 1 year ahead of Sobhag. Vipin (my brother) also attended the same school and he was the eldest. We spent 7 years of Primary education together. Sobhag was a little notorious and shy during the time but he always stood by me. We spent a simple and nice life together. .

For the secondary education, Sobhag, Sobhag’s sister Subadra (Bena) and I went to Nairobi. Subadra and I used to stay in the same hostel. Our Hostel and Sobhag’s boarding school were located nearby so we had an opportunity to meet occasionally. Sobhag was in boarding with Ashok (from Nanyuki). During school holidays we all came home to Meru, where we spent more time together. My brother was very helpful in keeping our relationship strong. After Secondary education I moved to India. While I was in India I got married to Ashok. Sobhag continued to work in his father’s shop for 2 years, then moved to Nairobi. .

After I got married, my husband Ashok travelled to Kenya. He used to meet Sobhag at Mayfair after he finished work along with common friends. Ashok was discussing his interest in settling back to Kenya and leaving India, but it was not getting done. This is where Sobhag overheard this discussion and intervened. In the discussion, Sobhag asked Ashok about his work in India and found out that Ashok was manufacturing shirts. He suggested for him to start the same business in Kenya since he had experience and was looking to move back to Kenya. Ashok during that time was uncertain as he was a non-citizen. Sobhag proposed to set up a business in his name, being a Kenyan Citizen. He registered the company as Liberty Manufacturers Ltd and was the Director and a shareholder. Ashok got a work permit through the business. .

To establish the factory:
Sobhag found a premise near Casino cinema which was owned by Bhagu and he rented the premises. To manufacture the shirts, we required machinery which Ashok was aware of, so Sobhag contacted Juki agents to organise and finance the machinery. Sobhag contacted the builders to come and set up the factory. During that time, textiles were in short supplies in Nairobi. To get the supplies of the textiles, he had contacts in Kisumu who then contacted someone in Kicomi to get the full supply of textiles for manufacturing. Once manufacturing started, for marketing the products, Sobhag took Ashok to upcountry to introduce him to the customers through recommendations which started sales.

My in laws were in India and were insecure about the business hence they used to write to Ashok to be careful to maintain the reputation of the family. The business started flourishing and my in laws moved to Kenya as they were called to join the business. Ashok had good support from his father in managing the Industry and eventually his father became a Kenya Citizen. Sobhag transferred the Directorship and shareholding to my father in law. Sobhag did not charge any money to Ashok while setting up and establishing the business and he was content in helping Ashok. 

Sobhag not only helped us with the business, he helped us settle down in Kenya. Both our families travelled to Mombasa during the holidays. Our children grew up together and we lived together as a family until our children went to university and Sobhag moved to UK. These were the beautiful memories of us. Sobhag is a very kind person by nature. God bless him. 

Sudha & Ashok Enclosing: Pics of Our Meru Shop & Houses. And others


  • Patel Alpesh Umedbhai


    Sobhag uncle is good person
    Sir is help for me i learn attitude accuracy every time speak truely not argument i learn
    I live in India but i always remember uncle speach for me
    I love you
    Manisha Ben
    All sisters



    Mr.& Mrs SOBHAG & FAMILY
    We feel so special, privileged and humbled to have received this sponsorship.
    You are one of the most extraordinarily supportive people that we have ever had the pleasure of knowing. Not only is your donation an amazing help, but it also goes to show what a big and kind heart you have.

    Thank you Very much


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