A Successful Individual
in Real Estate Business
M any Bangladeshis have established themselves in the USA mainstream business arena and brightened the image of Bangladesh across the globe. Anir Rahman is one of them. He lives at Downey area in California.
Anir Rahman was born on April 28, 1972 in prominent Kazi family of Kubpara under Kotalipara in Gopalganj. His father, late Kazi Abdus Salam, worked at Bangladesh Meteorological Department. He was also a homeopath. They used to live in the government quarters at Sher-e-Bangla Nagar. Meritorious Anis Rahman passed SSC from Sher-e-Bangla Nagar Government High School in 1979 and HSC from Government Titumir College in 1981 and took admission in honors at Dhaka College.
While studying, Anis Rahman took a job at Sheraton then the only five-star hotel at that time known as Intercontinental in 1972. After working for 4 months and 20 days, he moved to Bahrain. There he took a job at an international standard hotel ‘Holy Day In’. He returned to the country in 1986 after working there for 4 years. After returning to the country, he took the initiative of attending degree examination. During the period of anti-Ershad movement, he studied at home and took part in the exam and passed in second class.
During his two-year stay in the country, he joined Nitol Motors as a sales executive in 1986. Through his responsible activities, the business of Nitol Motors started expanding. He used to ride on a motorcycle and worked hard for marketing. During the flood in 1986, he opened 3 relief camps for the flood victims with his friends and helped the victims with help of various people. At this time, he decided to go to America and prepare for the ‘World Tour’ with his senior friend Musharraf. For this, they chose the campaign of ‘anti-drug’ activities as a slogan. In 1989, the two were forced to return reaching to Pakistan via Kolkata-Delhi.
Then Anis Rahman along with Musharraf again took initiatives to go to the USA through world tour. After going through many ups and downs in this journey, they reached Athens, Greece in 1969 via India-Pakistan. They had to spend very difficult and tough time. They had to spend night in Central Park. When the people of Bangladesh Agency heard about the two youth coming from Bangladesh on world tour to make people about drug, they didn’t show any sympathy but disregard. Then, they came to Yugoslavia from there. They used to sleep at the railway station. Thereafter, they came to Austria with great difficulty. In Austria, the Bangladeshis were very hospitable to them.
Mohsin, a friend of Musharraf, offered him a job of selling newspapers. He got a dollar per day. Then, they came to Frankfurt, Germany. Some Bangladeshis advised them to stay in Germany through asylum, but Anis was firm that he will reach the dream country USA. From there, they came to Amsterdam in the Netherlands. He got a chance to stay with a Pakistani because he knew Urdu. The house consisting 1 bedroom was seemed to him like heaven. Because, his experience as a ‘homeless citizen’ was to sleep on park benches, railway stations in different countries day after day. Anis has learned a lot experiencing with different situations. In Amsterdam, someone said to him, “One boy cannot be companion of another boy”. For this reason, he and Musharraf became separated.
Anis Rahman’s strong morale has given him the courage to see windows of successes at every moment in this difficult and thrilling journey. Although the US embassy in the Netherlands granted Musharraf a visa but Anis did not get. Instead, the authority put a ‘refused’ seal on his passport. In this critical moment, Anis got help of a Bangladeshi. The gentleman removes the ‘Refused’ or No Visa seal with a special machine. He then went to the Bangladeshi Consulate in Copenhagen with that passport. An old gentleman was the consul. He looked at his papers and spoke and recommended him as per the rules. He called them and came to the address given by him the next day. He submitted these papers to the USA Embassy on the same day. This time his fortune is auspicious. In September 1989, he arrived in New York, USA.
Arriving there, Anis visited the house of Joseph hailed from Sylhet, brother of his friend Jobair. He stayed at home for 3/4 days there. On the first day, he decorated furniture of the grocery shop of Joseph’s sister Peara’s husband without any pay. Joseph bought him a blanket and a towel. They managed a room for Anis where he got his classmate. Then, he got work at a restaurant. As he did not have a work permit in his name, he got the job in the name of Joseph’s cousin Laskar. At that time everyone called him ‘Laskar’. After 7/8 months he tried to quit his night job.
In Manhattan, he had to travel 18 blocks in the biting winter cold to join the work. He tried for jobs in many restaurants and other potential places in Manhattan but got no job because he is not white. At that time, he knew there was an opportunity to do paperwork in California. He decided to go to California by bus, because the bus costs 68 dollars and the plane costs 350. It was a difficult journey that took 3 days and he had to change bus at 14 bus stops. At El Paso, Mexico border, he faced serious problem because there was a checking to see whether any Mexican is entering? They only took down Anis from the bus and released him after a long interrogation. Going to the next bus, he got the fellow travellers at the next stop.
He likes the weather and cleanliness of California. Initially, he drove car with a driving license, but since he was experienced in restaurants, he tried to work accordingly. But not getting job in restaurant, he had to work as messenger, then house guard. He worked at gas station as well as an insurance agent. He also worked in a grocery store. After returning to the country in 1993 to get married, his mother introduced him as a ‘security officer’, but Anis frankly said that I work as a night guard. I haven’t got a green card yet. After two years of marriage, he took his wife to the USA. After the marriage, his fate was turned. He worked as a salesman in an electronics store, earning more than 500 dollars a week, including salary and commissions.
When the company went bankrupt, the manager said to him ‘”Wherever work, be a key person”. He worked keeping these words in his mind. He joined to Circuit City. He got legal documents in 1996. He worked as a real estate agent in the South East. He had no income for 6 months and started running out of money. In 2005, he received 220,000 dollars through a contract. His life took a turn. He bought the Lexas-456 for 60,000 at that time. He is a leading realtor in the real estate business arena. He still works for 12 to 18 hours a day. He is now in charge of managing 160 houses in addition to 25/30 rental house of his own. He gets 7% commission from there which is 80% of his income. There is a business of buying / selling lands. He also has a food business.
Anis Rahman is a visionary, prudent, self-confident man who is successful in business as well as family life. The couple, Anis Rahman Ujjwal and Farzana Shaheen Luna, has three children are studying.
Anis Rahman is a unique example among Bangladeshi Americans who have overcome many problems and crises to conquer America. He founded the Tasfia Foundation in 1998 in the name of her eldest daughter, Tasfia, with a view to helping to the poor and helpless in an area of Natore. Above all, Anis Rahman is a friendly and humble person.