On the eve of Ramadan, the announcement in a local newspaper about the visit of Muhammad Jamal Khan, a 14-year old Pakistani boy, triggered lot of curiosity and enthusiasm among the Jamal Khans in Rose Hill.  Though they had never known and met the boy they were overtaken by an instinctive impulse that this foreigner might be linked to their ancestry.
Fareed Jamal Khan, the 74-year old patriarch of the local clan, could not retain his intuitive feeling and he instructed his sons and nephews to arrange a family meeting with the boy.  For more than one week, the Jamal Khans endlessly searched the local address of the Pakistani boy, but in vain.  But finally, it happened like a spell of magic.  Sitting in front of the television on 14th August 2011, they watched the MBC-TV news showing the young Jamal Khan reciting Quranic verses at a function of the Pakistan High Commission.  The reaction among the Jamal Khans of Rose Hill was spontaneous: “Pa ena doutLi enn Pathan!!”
The Pathans, also known as Pashtuns, live predominantly in Northern Pakistan and Afghanistan.  But they are also spread all over the world, especially in India, Iran, Singapore, Australia, Europe and USA.  The Pathans are known as people who are brave, simple and sincere in their dealing with others.  They staunchly hold to their cultural traditions and connect with one another in a visceral way.  Most of them are guided by an unwritten code of ethics, known as Pakhtoonwali.  The tenets of Pakhtoonwali show the true essence of Pathan culture which incorporates the following major practices: “melmastia” (hospitality and protection to every guest), “nanwati” (asylum to all guests seeking help), “badal” (the right of revenge), “sabar” (steadfastness), “imaandar” (honesty and righteousness), “tureh” (bravery), “istequamat” (persistence), “ghayrat” (defense of property and honour) and “mamus” (defense of one’s women).
The Mauritian chapter of the Jamal Khan dates back to 1875 when the Koube Jamal Khan was brought by the British to work as lightman at Ile-aux-Fouquets.  During the colonial rule, there were several pathans among the batches of immigrants who were recruited to work as seamen (lascars), road-builders and rail workers.  Their tales are intricately linked with the cockneys.  The second generation of the Mauritian pathans diversified their business activities in the field of property development, restaurants (hotel dithé), butchers and fish dealers.  The third generation has considerably moved up the social ladder, with highly qualified professionals among them.  Over the years, the Jamal Khans have lost the traits of Pathan culture and have fully integrated the Mauritian society.  Nonetheless, they still maintain a strong affinity with their Pathan identity. Farouk Jamal Khan, a Mauritian public figure and a veteran of the local Jamal Khan clan, has travelled extensively all over the world in search of establishing connection with overseas Jamal Khans.
The grandfather of the Pakistani boy, Badshah Jamal Khan was born around 1875 in Peshawar and later settled down in the city of Karachi.  His descendants are engaged in small trade and are strongly committed to the Islamic religion.  Muhammad Jamal Khan memorized the entire Quran at the age of 10.  His younger brothers, Afzaal (12 years) and Abdul Basith (10 years) have also mastered the Quran fully.
Muhammad Jamal Khan’s visit to Mauritius is a matter of coincidence.  His Mauritian host had no prior contact with him or his parents.  The Mauritian party simply expressed a wish to its Pakistani contact that a young Hafiz-ul Quran to come to Mauritius for Ramadhan.  The choice of the maddressah (Islamic school) in Karachi went upon Muhammad Jamal Khan.
On 21st  August 2011, the Jamal Khans of Rose Hill would not be disappointed as they had the correct address in hand this time.  A dozen of Jamal Khans led by the patriarch, Fareed Jamal Khan, landed at Trou aux Biches where Muhammad Jamal Khan was being treated as a special guest.  Face-to-face for the first time, the Pakistani boy greeted the Jamal Khans in Pushto “singara khair?” (how are you?).  The gesture was spontaneous.  One by one, the Jamal Khans of Rose Hill embraced Muhammad Jamal Khan of Pakistan with warm emotions.  The Jamal Khans were momentarily transposed to their roots in Peshawar!