Kantilal Jivan Shah, known simply as Kanti, is said to be the most written about Seychellois. Described as a Renaissance Man, he has been a guru, historian, natural history expert, palmist, vegetarian cook, photographer, artist and sculptor, agronomist and intellectual.
He has been featured in over a hundred newspaper and magazine articles and radio and television programs from more than 30 countries, and has been visited by some of the world's best known personalities ranging from Queen Elizabeth II and Mother Teresa to Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond. The latter featured Jivan as a character in his last Bond novel. He also acted in a movie with the actor Omar Sharif.
Jivan runs an export and import business established by his father in 1895. He is better known as a pioneer of environmentalism and ecotourism and as a leading historian and folklorist. He is a committee member of various organisations such as the Alliance Francaise, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Seychelles Environment Trust Fund. Now 84, he attributes his good health to being a lifelong vegetarian, non-smoker and teetotaler.
He was included in the UN Environmental Program Global 500 Roll of Honour was also honoured by the Royal Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters. Kantilal Jivan has also been involved in the passing of the following legislation: creation of Ste. Anne Marine National Park; Port Launay Marine National Park, the Protection of Shells Act; Animal and Bird Protection; Controlled Cropping of Seabirds' Eggs; Protection of Turtles; and the Seychelles Marine Mammal Sanctuary.
He currently has a son and a grandson.Mr Kantilal Jivan Shah, age 87 years, died on the 22.10.2010 in Victoria Hospital, Mahe, Seychelles
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