- Hardcover: 500 pages
- Publisher: OUP Pakistan (29 March 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0199064709
- ISBN-13: 978-0199064700
- Product Dimensions: 24.4 x 3.8 x 16.3 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
The Punjab Bloodied, Partitioned and Cleansed: Unravelling the 1947 Tragedy through Secret British Reports and First-Person Accounts Hardcover – Import, 29 Mar 2012
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Admirably, Ahmed treats the ordinary people of all three communities in the Punjab conflict with equal empathy and compassion.
About the Author
Ishtiaq Ahmed was born in Lahore on 24 February 1947. He received a PhD in Political Science from Stockholm University in 1986. He taught at Stockholm University from 1987 to 2007, and was then invited as Senior Research Fellow and Visiting Research Professor by the Institute of South Asian Studies, National University of Singapore during 2007-2010. He took early retirement and is now Professor Emeritus of Political Science, Stockholm University and Honorary Senior Fellow, Institute of South Asian Studies, National University of Singapore. He has published extensively on Pakistani and South Asian politics. His research interests cover as diverse fields as political Islam, ethnicity and nationalism, human and minority rights, and indeed partition studies.
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Top customer reviews
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Although the author, born in Lahore a few months before the Partition, is from Pakistan side of Punjab and currently a Swedish national, the book is thoroughly objective and unbiased.
Having studied a vast literature on the subject in preparation for my fiction book "Lost Generations" (2013) on the subject of deracination of Sikh refugees from Rawalpindi and their settlement in Delhi in 1947, I can categorically say no book since Urvashi Butalia's "The Other Side of Silence: Voices from the Partition of India" exhilarated me as much.
As a political scientist, Ishtiaq Ahmed has devoted early on a full chapter on the theory of Ethnic Cleansing.
Compared to the first-person accounts which form the bulk of the book, and are its greatest strength, the short chapter on Analysis and Conclusions appears unnecessary and not as well-researched. The figure of casualties on both sides is understated between 500,000 and 750,000, which the author has basically taken from GD Khosla's estimate of 250,000 on each side in his disgraced and nonobjective book "Stern Reckoning", adding to that estimate the figure of up to 250,000 missing Mussulmans from the Sikh state of Patiala as reported by Mian Iftikharuddin, the West Punjab Minister for Refugees and Rehabilitation. GD Khosla's book was a particularly obsequious and anti-Muslim attempt produced at the behest of Indian Government to present Indian point of view, and the author picked the least figure he could get away with, to mitigate the feelings of guilt of Nehru and Mountbatten. All the later historians, both Indian and British, have kept increasing the figures of casualties over the years, some going as far as 2 million or more total deaths. The consensus, if any such thing exists, is a figure of at least one million more towards 1.5 million mark, with more deaths of Muslims in the East compared to non-Muslims in the West. However, that's a subject the historians are likely to keep revisiting in the future.
All in all, "The Punjab Bloodied, Partitioned and Cleansed" is one of the most important contribution to the subject of Punjab Partition.
Manjit Sachdeva, Author of Lost Generations (2013)