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Jayantilal Keshavji Chande (known as Sir Andy) by his friends and associates, a prominent entrepreneur, public servant and a tireless worker in humanitarian organizations both in Tanzania and internationally was born in 1929.

His story began 7 years before his birth in India when his father, Keshavji Chande, immigrated to the then British Territory of Tanganyika (now Tanzania).  Years later, Andy quickly mastered his father’s Tanzania-based grain milling business from the bottom up and effectively shouldered greater responsibilities.

During the time of his apprenticeship, Andy developed a talent more important and challenging than his entrepreneurial genius: a capacity to deal on equal terms with people of all cultures and races.  This attribute was particularly useful in view of the social, racial and political divisions that existed before Tanganyika’s independence on December 9th 1961.  Neither he nor his family belonged to the British ruling group or to the African majority.

Whilst working in line with his father’s principle that a strict distinction must be maintained between business and partisan politics, Andy has held executive positions in a vast array of disparate national, regional and international businesses. He later on persuaded his family to allow him to take up the second offer he received from the Secretary of State for Colonies for appointment as a member of the Legislative Council and concurrently to serve on the Executive Council (Cabinet) which he did until Tanganyika became fully independent in December 1961. During his term in the government, he concentrated on agricultural aspect of the economy and served as a member of Capital Sentence Remission Committee chaired by the Governor and also as a visiting Justice to all prisons.

In 1960, having declined the offer to take up a parliamentary ticket for a constituency, Andy accepted an offer from the founder President Julius Nyerere to serve as a member of the first three year development plan, chairmen of the National Museum and memberships of various economic and social organs.

The advent of nationalization in 1967, which deprived him of ownership of the family milling business, was unsettling, but proved to be a temporary setback. For it soon became clear to President Nyerere and his successors that the country could do a lot better with the dedication and expertise that men such as Andy could offer.

Between 1967 and 2003, Andy took over the responsibility to create a homogenous grain milling unit out of 12 nationalized companies creating the National Milling Corporation, which he managed for five years and on whose Board he served for ten years. During this period, he also served as chairman of Tanzania Tourist Corporation, Tanganyika Standard Newspapers Ltd, East African Harbours Corporation, East African Railways Corporation and Cargo Handling Company of East Africa ltd.

Following the break-up of the East African Community, he become founder chairman of Air Tanzania Corporation and later served as chairman of Tanzania Harbours Authority and of Tanzania Railways Corporation.

In 2003, Queen Elizabeth II made him an Honorary Knight Commander of the Civil Division of the Most Excellent Order of British Empire and two years later (2005) he was decorated with the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman Award by the President Abdul Kalam of India.

In 2005, Andy published his autobiography – A Knight in Africa – Journey from Bukene which has also been translated in Swahili language.

Andy is closely associated with fraternal and charitable organizations, such as Rotary International, Freemasonry and is also the founder of Tanzania Deaf Society and School.

Andy is married to Jayalaxmi Madhvani from Uganda. They have three sons and three grand children.


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