Mohammad Ilyas Raja

Mohammad Ilyas Raja is a freelance writer and Councillor (Labour) from Canalside ward of Woking, Surry Council(England). He is Chairman of Appeals Committee of Woking Borough Council since three years.

Mohammad Ilyas Raja passed his Bachelor of Legislative Law exams from Punjab University, Lahore, Pakistan, in the 1975/76 session and joined the legal profession as a lawyer/advocate. He came to live in Woking in 1984 and worked in the Civil Service and as a fulltime counsellor and advisor in south London and a volunteer advisor with the Woking Citizens Advice Bureau. He served as a governor of Broadmere School, Woking for four years and founded the Woking Residents Initiative for Skills, Employment and Education (Woking RISE). With the help of friends Cllr Raja also founded Ham Nawa UK (a social and cultural organisation, meaning ‘like-minded people’), which was established in 1996 and holds regular charitable events. He was a member of the board of directors of Woking Gallery (now The Lightbox) and the Maybury Centre.

A member of the Labour Party since 1986, Cllr Raja was first elected Borough councillor for Central, Maybury and Sheerwater Ward, Woking, in May 1996 and again in May 2000; he was Woking’s first non-white elected councillor and retired from office in June 2004. Cllr Raja later stood as candidate for Woking North in May 2013 and was elected councillor in May 2014.

( This profile has been taken from ‘Exploring Surry’s Past’)

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