- Paperback: 192 pages
- Publisher: Penguin; 1st Edition edition (2 February 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0143065882
- ISBN-13: 978-0143065883
- Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 1.2 x 13.3 cm
- Average Customer Review: 617 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #343 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Train to Pakistan Paperback – 2 Feb 2016
|Paperback, 2 Feb 2016||
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An Authentic Version on Partition Manomajra, a tiny villages slumbers without much din of the urbane suddenly comes alive with fanaticism takes hold of the innocent villagers. The amity and goodwill give place to rancour and so the majority, the Sikhs on knowing the horrors let loose by Muslims in Pakistan on their brethern Sikhs, would like to let out their rages on their fellow villagers- Muslims. It is cast against a love story between a Sikh and a Muslim girl for whose sake the rustic makes a sacrifice thereby allowing her and the rest of the Muslims on their journey to the Promised Land, Pakistan. --Dr V Pala Prasada
read Train to Pakistan years ago, right back when I was in college. I can still never forget the novel, which is undoubtedly one of my favourite Indian novels in English. Khushwant Singh is a daring story-teller. He manages to remain one of the few who refrain from much of the linguistic pomp, glamour, and political pretense that dogs Indian English writers. His language is simple; his message is startling. The novel is based on the time when India won independence, and when the partition took place. Singh blends satire and compassion with heart felt anger: at the hypocrisy and cowardice of social activists, and at the bureaucracy and corruption that permeates Indian politics. The climax of the novel is the message of the story: action is never political; it is only personal. Nobody is going to get up and do a thing for anyone else unless it's for someone they love, unless it's something that comes from the heart. This book is an absolute must read for every single person who cares about Hindu-Muslim harmony. --Supriya Thanawala Nov 19, 2011
Khushwant at his best... A must read for all english prose readers... read this book many years back.. but still i remember each and every character of the novel... Gud narration, story set in the backdrop of partition of india.. describes love,lust,burtality of humans in a simple way.. --Santhosh Tarikere Devananda Dec 2, 2011
About the Author
Khushwant Singh was India’s best-known writer and columnist. He was founder-editor of Yojana and editor of The Illustrated Weekly of India, the National Herald and Hindustan Times. He was a member of Parliament from 1980 to 1986. He was awarded the Padma Bhushan in 1974 but returned the decoration in 19984 in protest against the storming of the Golden Temple in Amritsar by the Indian Army. In 2007 he was awarded the Padma Vibhushan.
He passed away in 2014 at the age of ninety-nine.
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The language of the book is simple and gripping.The story of Train to Pakistan is slow in the beginning but picks on gradually as the events unfold. The end is the best part of the book because, when I finished reading, I was in tears.
The book is about partition, but it is as relevant for today's world as it would have been in 1947. Even today people are not free to marry another person just because they belong to different religions. So much madness is going on throughout the world. There is religious extremism (terrorism) giving rise to madness to kill and there are vested interest which protect such madness.
The books gives a message silently but very effectively that human beings have to realise that we all are human being, and there is no glory in unnecessary killing and wanton destruction. Perhaps the society will relaise it at some point of time, somewhere, someday ... a religion of humanity ...
Though it's a small book, only having 190 pages, but the story those pages holds, tells a lot about the life and times, right after the independence of India.
Please don't dare to miss this one. As always Amazon is amazing.
Train to Pakistan is the story of the small village of Mano Majra. It starts at the time of partition, soon after when the English have left India leaving a broken country in their wake. The muslims have fled to Pakistan and have had their independence for a day already. And now that the Britishers are gone, the sense of religion has been increasing ten-folds. The love between the Hindus and the Muslims has been replaced by hatred and this hatred is becoming evident in the large number of corpses flying here and there. However, despite all of this, the small village of Mano Majra is safe. It has a train station but very few trains stop by and so, they generally do not have any information about what is happening in Delhi. Besides, these people have known each other for a long time. They do not hold any enmity toward each other because of their religion. All is well until the murder of the richest money lender in the village. That one night changes everything.
What makes this novel special (other than the fact that it is an Indian classic) is the fact that throughout its entirety, it is a rather uneventful story. Things happen but they do not hold a very huge importance. The most important event in this novel, in fact, the highlight of this novel is the climax. That is also where the book takes its name from.
Another special thing about this novel is that it talks of a time when Hindus and Muslims lived together in harmony. There is also a young couple here—a Muslim girl and a Sikh boy—both of who have fallen in love with each other (another thing that sets the climax). So in a way, this story is also a love story, although that is not the primary theme of it (for which I'm rather glad myself). Anyway, what I intend to say by mentioning this couple is that despite the time of turbulence in the country, and despite the situation in the rest of the country (or rather, two countries), people in Mano Majra live happily. That is, until a few policemen come and try to diverge the two communities. They take the Muslims away with the intention of taking them to Pakistan and then a few more Hindu come with the intention of harming them in their trains, of sending a train of corpses to Pakistan. And in that moment, the Sikhs of Mano Majra forget their brotherhood for the sake of religion. Through all of this, Khushwant Singh shows the situation of India and Pakistan, of Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims and how, in the end, religion is the easiest way to persuade someone to do something.
This book perfectly captures the horrors of the partition of India. Despite the brutalism, I still believe this book was rather sugar-coated by Singh in order to make it readable by all people. I loved the book for showing about the culture of Punjab, about the pre-partition situation in small villages of Punjab and above all, displaying how the police system has always been weak in India. Bringing Iqbal behind the bars proves just that. So overall, I'm rather happy for having come across a book like this. It reminded me of the hard times the two nations of India and Pakistan have faced in their past (and continue to face even today—71 and a half years later. A definite recommendation.