A moving portrait of a community reduced to being tourists in their own homeland. It has been twenty-five years since around 3.5 lakh Kashmiri Pandits were uprooted from their homes in the Kashmir valley due to militancy and changed circumstances. Many of them had to face the ignominy of living in tents, then in one-room tenements or flats, as refugees in their own country. They felt let down by both the state and central governments and by Indian society as a whole -- as well as by the Muslims of the valley. There was to be no going back for them. From Home to House is an anthology of short stories, essays and writings by Kashmiri Pandits in exile, vividly bringing out their nostalgia for Kashmir, their sense of betrayal, their attempts to pick up the pieces and carve a new life for themselves. These are the reflections of a lost and scattered people in what for them is an alien land. The writings show both their vulnerability -- their helplessness as they see their culture and way of life getting eroded -- and their resilience -- as the younger generation of Pandits spreads its wings and builds a whole new life for itself. This anthology holds a mirror to the troubled valley of Kashmir, a mirror from which the reflection of a section of its population is now missing.
About the Author
Arvind Gigoo was born in Srinagar, Kashmir, in 1945. He did his master's in English from the University of Kashmir and taught English in various government colleges of the Jammu and Kashmir state till 2003. He migrated to the Jammu region in 1990 due to the militancy and terrorism in Kashmir. He is the author of The Ugly Kashmiri (Cameos in Exile). He translates Kashmiri poems and short stories into English. At present he lives in Jammu. Shaleen Kumar Singh was born in Badaun (Uttar Pradesh) in 1979. He did his PhD on Mahashweta's English verse. He is a poet, literary critic, reviewer, editor and translator. His writings are published in the literary journals and newspapers in India and abroad. He has edited the writings of Swami Nempal and the critical writings of Stephen Gill. His poetry collection was published by Poets Printry in South Africa. He co-edited an anthology of world poetry, Journey, with Graham Lancaster. He heads the Department of English in the S.S. Post-Graduate College, Shahjahanpur, UP. He edits the e-journal Creative Saplings. Adarsh Ajit was born in Ratnipora, Pulwama district, Kashmir, in 1960. He is a reviewer, poet, columnist and translator. He is the author of a book of Urdu poems, Yaad Jo Aatay Hain Voh Din. His write-ups on social, political and literary issues have been published in various journals and newspapers. He left Kashmir in 1990 because of the political turmoil there. Since then he has been staying in Jammu.