Story Time

This 83 Year Old Put A Photo On Facebook, And It Caught The Eye Of One Of The World’s Richest Men

It was just a regular Facebook Photo, not dissimilar to those that others post every day in an 83 year old idol, Wild smiled out as she held flowers at a family wedding. But the message that IDA subsequently received via her iPad may have come as a surprise that read, Are you IDA Morland? And the query stood out for several reasons, not the least of which because the sender is worth hundreds of millions of dollars. The man who asked the question was Asgar Patel, founder and nonexecutive chairman of logistics firmhouse of Patel’s. In the 2017 Forbes list of the top 100 Indian business owners in Arabian countries, he was placed at number 45.

What’s more, in 2013 the entrepreneur’s fortune was valued at a cool $615,000,000. Now living in Dubai, 78 year old Asgar is originally from India and as it happens, he may have been heard at his business news from his father, who once owned companies in Karachi and Mumbai. However, in 1947, while the future multimillionaire was just six, his family’s safety was put in jeopardy. The reason for the Pearl was that on August 15, 1947, British rule in India ended. Subsequently, the country formerly known as British India divided into two, creating India and Pakistan.

Many Muslims then relocated to Pakistan, although a large number of the Hindu population chose to remain in India and the mass migration created massive unrest, with roughly 1 million people thought to have died in the ensuing riots. Escar’s father was therefore worried about the welfare of his family and principally his four children, Escar, Ramson, Adamar and Kulsam. He decided then that the best thing would be to try to move his relatives abroad and out of harm’s way until the trouble had passed and some friends of Asgard’s father had once stayed at a guest house in the west end of Glasgow, Scotland.

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Located on Willow Bank Street, the accommodation frequently hosted international students for which it was convenient due to its proximity to the University of Glasgow. So Asgard’s father’s friends got in touch with the boarding house to see if they could take the four children.

However, the owner was getting old and felt that such a responsibility would be too much for her. So given that refusal, she may have been amazed to answer the door soon after to those very siblings. Yes, the children’s father had been so concerned for his offspring welfare that he had decided to send them across the world anyway. And with the kids right in front of her, the landlady came up with a solution. She would look after the eldest two boys, Ramson and Attibar, while her niece took in Kolsam.

And Asgar part of the reason that the kindly niece Greta Morland agreed to the plan was because the twelve year old girl was the same age as her daughter IDA. This youngster was none other than IDA Morland or IDA wild as she became when she married years later. It might appear far fetched to think that parents would send their four children to the other side of the world with no guarantee of a place to stay. But the situation in India at the time had been so dire, however, that they may have felt that it was their only choice. Indeed, I just said in a 2017 interview with the Daily Record, when they came, at first we thought, how can any mum and dad send four kids like this to Scotland?

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But you could see it a bit more when you saw all the horrible things that were happening in India and Pakistan. And in time, the adopted brother and sister truly became part of the family, Asgar even called IDA’s parents mum and dad, Aida explained to the Daily Record. However, that was quite embarrassing. Lots of times my mom said to him, Look Asgar, you’ve got your own mom and she won’t be pleased, so you better call us aunt and uncle. Furthermore, in the five years that Asgar lived with IDA, they led a normal family life.

They vacationed on the coast and Asgar loved playing with the family dog, Sparky, IDA remembered. Coulson got homesick and wanted to go home. But Asgar would have lived here forever. He quickly became part of the family. In fact, the boy became so integrated into his new community that he couldn’t remember his native tongue and was only able to speak the language of his adopted homeland.

When his mum came over to visit, he had forgotten how to speak Urdu and she couldn’t speak English, so they just waved at each other, I’d have recalled in an interview for television news station STV in August 2017. And when the time came for Asgar to go back, he was reluctant to leave, IDA told the Daily Record. Although he loved his parents very much, when it was time for him to return home, he didn’t want to go. He wanted to stay with us. It wasn’t an easy decision, but he knew he had to leave to be with his own family.

The last time that IDA saw Asgar as a child then was on a platform in Glasgow train station as they waved goodbye. It proved an incredibly upsetting occasion for everyone. Oh, we were heartbroken when he left, IDA told STV, adding taking him to the train was dreadful then. At first, IDA and Asgar stayed in touch via letters and cards on special occasions like birthdays and Christmas, but contact eventually slipped away. After a few years, Ita’s family also moved house several times, and finally the estranged children lost track of each other.

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Soon the cards dropped, but I often wondered where he ended up, IDA told the Daily Record. Little did she know, though, that her beloved brother had actually been spending years trying to find her. And amazingly, 60 years after they had parted. He recognized the picture of her on Facebook at a family wedding and sent her a message. I couldn’t believe he’d seen that one photograph.

It was a miracle, really, IDA said in an interview with STV. And once the connection had been reestablished, it was as if the two had never been separated. It wasn’t strange or awkward and we chatted away like two old pals. Ida told the Daily Record they finally saw each other again when he traveled to Scotland in August 2017. And while Asgar may be a multimillionaire now, Aided doesn’t think that the money has changed him.

He’s done so well for himself and he’s still such a genuine and lovely person. She’s now Asgar plans to fly his long lost sister out to Dubai to meet his family. It’s just wonderful to have Escar back in my life after so many years apart, the 83 year old told the Daily record.

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