1947 Partition- A Journey from Dream to Reality
It was such a painful time. People were attacked violently and bleed to death. The British Empire came to an end. I cannot forget that blood soaking period. I have seen people overwhelmed with grief, terror, and anxiety but at the same time, the sparkle in their eyes was really inspiring. There was a huge tension between Hindus and Muslims. The evolution of Pakistan on the map of the world is not more than a miracle. How this has happened is a different story. I was young and energetic at that time.
He was sitting next to the window and thinking about August 1947 partition. With tears in his eyes, my grandfather told me his story during migration to Pakistan. I asked him about his feelings at the time of partition.
Well, my dear Sara, you know I am so honored to say that Quaid-e-Azam was our leader. He was the man of great personality. The journey from dream to reality has taken a lot but being a Muslim I am so pleased to live in a free Muslim state.
Grandpa felt indulged in the past and he told me that;
The division of subcontinent led to two emerging nations. Hindus in India and Muslims in Pakistan. People fled to Pakistan leaving everything behind. Millions of people migrated and this is termed as the massive migration of history. The sectarian ideology of Hindus and Sikhs create differences with Muslims. Many Muslim families got shattered, hundreds were misplaced and many women were assaulted as a result of an aggressive attack of Sikhs and Hindus.
He continued, it is a fact that one can forget the sound of a blast in three days but the reality and sacrifices I have seen can never be forgotten.
“That was a terrible night. I was 19 years old boy having 2 brothers and 5 sisters. I was the eldest sibling and named as "Siddiqui" by my parents. My father was a policeman and He told my mother; finally, the time has arrived to move to our motherland. 1947 partition was a period of great upheaval. We migrate from Kapurthala, India to Khanewal District, Punjab province, Pakistan. Although we can’t avoid the outside storm of violence so it’s better to make some necessary arrangements. Meanwhile, it was heard that some Sikhs attacked our village. I can still remember those faces who brutality murdered children and infants in front of their mothers. The women were abducted. It was the height of barbarism. I got panic when I saw blood stains on the face and clothes of my father. We were advised by my father to lock the door properly but I can clearly hear the screams of women in our street. People of our community fight back and defeated those cruel persons….”
He further added, "My father took some wooden planks and place some cotton pillows and clothes around them in the cart. He shifted my sisters under those wooden panels and arranged in such a way so they can only breathe and nobody can see them…”
Grandpa took a deep breath. I can see his lips were shaking. Then he continued; “we started our journey and we don’t have much to eat and drink. The way to Pakistan was not that easy. We don’t know exactly where Pakistan is but we were determined to move on. I can still remember those sleepless nights when we got stuck in flood resulting in an epidemic outbreak of different diseases in that area. My two sisters affected by deadly diseases and lost their lives before reaching Pakistan at the age of 4 years and 5 years.”
It was so hard for me to imagine all this.
After 4-5 minutes of gloomy silence, he added. “In our street, there was a man named Ubaidullah who has 8 daughters and unfortunately they all were savagely attacked and taken away by mobs. These sacrifices meant a lot. He searched a lot for her daughters, made an announcement in different Masajid, mandirs but no one knows where they were. In fact, many people were being butchered and disappeared without a trace until they arrived safely at their destination.
Muhammad Siddique ( Author's Grandfather)
I hold my grandpa's hand and felt the ocean of words are seemingly dry. I tried to find words to say that can help to console him to some extent but...
He looked at me and said; after reaching Pakistan, my father started zamindari (landowner) and I used to help him. Later on, I joined the Pakistan Railways. The roots of Pakistan are very strong as it was built on the blood of hundreds of millions of people. Finally, Pakistan came into being on 14th August 1947.” He smiled and said; “we did our part now this homeland is all yours.”
But I can see the deep feeling of sorrow on his face. I remained silent. I have no words to say.
This was the tale of endless sufferings, torture, and grief but the best part is they survived. There are only a few people nowadays who are the witness of 1947, partition. These are some of the bitter memories of their lives. Such types of stories are rare which you will never find in history books.