Saturday, April 12, 2014

Train to Pakisthan

As the turmoil of independence and partition was hitting big towns of india, the simple people living in hinterlands were largely ignorant of the waves of change going through the country. The novel , 'Train to Pakistan' by Khushwant Singh is a very well written tale about a  village in Punjab where people of different religions , Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims who lived in perfect harmony had to unwillingly face the unrest the country was going through . As the country was partitioned into India and Pakistan,  anger and dissatisfaction  ruled because people living in different parts of these regions were uprooted from their ancestral land and had to move to completely newer settlements. This anger and dissatisfaction quickly turned into a war of revenge and resulted in mindless killing of many innocent people on both sides of the border. Kushwant Singh in his book takes us through the turmoil and unrest that a sleepy village of punjab undergoes when all the Muslims of the village have to leave for Pakistan, even though  they had lived in complete harmony with their fellow villagers of different religions for time immemorial. The villagers also witness the horrors of  ruthless killing as train loads of corpses arrive from Pakistan at their village railway station making them aware of the sentiments of hate and revenge running through people outside. This emotionally charged atmosphere sees some of these innocent villagers also take to violence to avenge their religion and country.
All in all its an exceptionally well written book and a pleasure to read. 

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