New Delhi: A number of books with a patriotic flavour have been brought out to celebrate and coincide with 70 years of India’s independence, touching upon issues that fired the country’s conscience and shaped its polity.
There is another book by former commander of the British Field Army Barney White-Spunner, who has dealt with the topic of Partition.
In “Partition: The Story of Indian Independence and the Creation of Pakistan in 1947”, the author illustrates the story of 1947 with experiences of people and what independence and partition meant to the farmers of the Punjab, those living in Lahore and Calcutta, or what it felt like to be a soldier in a divided and largely passive army.
The book is published by Simon and Schuster. Pan Macmillan India has also come out with an update, expanded 10th anniversary edition of Ramachandra Guha’s “India After Gandhi”.
In the last decade, India has witnessed, among other things, two general elections; the fall of the Congress and the rise of Narendra Modi; a major anti-corruption movement; more violence against women, Dalits, and religious minorities; a wave of prosperity for some but the persistence of poverty for others; comparative peace in Nagaland but greater discontent in Kashmir than ever before, Guha says.
The tenth anniversary edition, updated and expanded, brings the narrative up to the present, he adds.
Puffin Book’ “India at 70: Snapshots Since Independence”, written by Roshen Dalal, is an account of the nation’s evolution in the past seven decades.
It captures snippets of each of these 70 years through important events in various areas like politics, culture, science, sports, literature, music and television industry.
“I wrote this book in a short and easy-to-read format, to provide youngsters with an overview of India after Independence. To set up the structure of government, hold elections, relate with other countries, and plan India’s development has been a mammoth task, but that is not all that has gone into building a new nation,” says Dalal.
Puffin India also announced its new series “Discover India” with the release of the first six books – “Off to Goa”, “Off to Maharashtra”, “Off to Uttar Pradesh”, “Off to Tamil Nadu”, “Off to West Bengal” and “Off to Gujarat” – to celebrate 70 years of India’s independence.
With puzzles, crosswords and dozens of other activities, the books by Sonia Mehta seek to entertain, educate and enlighten young minds.
HarperCollins India has brought out a ‘Freedom list’ that offers readers a kaleidoscopic view of India, replete with its challenges and accomplishments.
The issues these books cover range from women in the freedom struggle to the trauma of Partition, from strife and wars to a deeply personal depiction of life in the pre- Partition era, from poets and patriots to the weary generations.
Among the books are “Pathways to Greatness” by A P J Abdul Kalam, “Footprints on Zero Line: Writings on the Partition” by Gulzar, Krishna Sobti’s “Zindaginama”, “India’s Broken Tryst” by Tavleen Singh, “The People Next Door: The Curious History of India’s Relations with Pakistan” by TCA Raghavan and Vera Hildebrand’s “Women at War: Subhash Chandra Bose and the Rani of Jhansi Regiment”.
Simon and Schuster has also come out with the 10th anniversary edition of Alex von Tunzelmann’s “Indian Summer: The secret history of the end of an Empire” and a paperback edition of “India Conquered: Britain’s Raj and the Chaos of Empire” by Jon Wilson.
“Indian Summer” depicts the epic sweep of events that ripped apart the greatest empire the world has ever seen, and saw one million people killed and ten million dispossessed.
It claims to reveal the secrets of the most powerful players on the world stage: the Cold War conspiracies, the private deals, and the intense and clandestine love affair between the wife of the last viceroy and the first prime minister of free India.
“India Conquered” revises the way people think about nation-building as much as empire, showing how many of the institutions that shaped 20th century India, Pakistan and Bangladesh were built in response to British power. (PTI)
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