Indian Muslims Post-Partition: My father’s Dilemma

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"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-font-family:Arial”>(father) family, like many other Muslims in India was torn between staying in their ancestral land and going to the new country founded for Muslims. The call for Pakistan and the Muslim League movement was more prominent in the elite or educated classes. For Abbu’s family it was a distant idea and life outside Dilli (Delhi) was inconceivable. But the partition wave didn’t leave them untouched and a few family members including Abbu migrated to Lahore. Lahore was chosen because they had heard it was similar to Dilli. A year in Lahore was enough for them to realize their heart was still in DilliGhalib ki galiyan(alley in which famous poet Ghalib lived), echoes of azaans(call for prayer) from Jama Masjid, pigeons flying above their roofs and the aroma of korma brought them back to the home their father had built. 

"Times New Roman";mso-bidi-font-family:Arial”>was the first person in his muhallah (neighborhood) to go oversees for higher education and his galli neighbors still remember the decorations and celebrations to welcome him on his return from the US in the mid 60s. He was amongst some of the most prominent geophysicists of his times. He contributed significantly to the field of science and technology but an incidence created a deep wound in his heart never to be healed. He was leading an expedition of scientists in the Himalaya. After a point in the high mountains near the Pakistan border, everyone from this team except him was allowed to go further. On questioning why he was stopped but not any of his students, cook or driver, he was informed it was because he was a Muslim. 

 is a social justice activist and writer based in the bay area, California. Her work includes US wars in the Middle East, impact of global militarization and drone warfare, people’s resistance movements in places like Palestine and Kashmir. Her essay, The Militarization of India was published in Counter Punch in May 2011. She also has publications on ZCommunications. 

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