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WHILE REDEEMING MY SOUL: Chapter 5 - An Oblivious Revelation

Updated on August 23, 2011

To read the synopsis or to read about the characters, locations or any other detail of this short-story with a bird's view, click the following link:


Every necessary detail is in there. To read the previous chapter, click:

Chapter 4: An Interlude Serenity

Ibrar Hussain was a carpenter; he had his only son with him who was burnt alive by the raiders. Surely those flames hurt everyone beyond one’s imagination. My father ran towards him in search of hope and asked if he knew where his family was. Ibrar told that my grandfather was killed in the attack. It was enough for him for being stunned in those crying voices. Ibrar further told that his sister has been abducted by the raiders and since then, she is missing. It was another thunderbolt for my father. He lost his family, lost those, who loved him for all his life; lost those, who were his life. Finding faces of your relatives in hundreds of dead bodies surely is the most difficult task for anybody. Though I might not have a similar direct experience of it, but I can still perceive this feeling, because I have been an indirect cause of the similar situation for many people.

My father started to look for my grandfather’s dead body. My grandmother was still missing. While searching one face, he found a dozen of other familiar faces. Faces which were grown up with my father: friends, neighbors, relatives and many more. Even after hours of searching, he was unlucky to find his father’s dead body. He was losing his hope, his courage, as he heard a familiar voice calling his name. It was his mother’s voice. She was injured, left without food and water, with no health assistance but she was amongst those few refugees who were able to flee from the raiders’ attack. The way she was crying, my father realized that she is also aware of the disastrous fact that what happened to her family. And the way she hugged him, proved that she knew what happened. But what she did not knew that my father found one more face, when he was searching the blended dead bodies in search of his father’s. It was a girl, who was killed in the attack. A face my father was familiar with. A face my father was in love with. Her name was Khadija, and she was engaged to my father a year ago. They both grew up in the same neighborhood, played in the same turf and both knew each other since their childhood. They were about to marry by the end of that year. My father never talked about her to anyone, not even to my mother and this fact is written in this diary and I could easily understand by reading the following line that he wrote in his diary that why he did not tell anyone about her. He wrote a simple, straightforward but a meaningful line:

“No one will ever understand what she really meant to me.”

14thAugust, 1947, the great day of independence had arrived. For which, all of these sacrifices were made. So many homeless person, injured and dying, but with hope and passion, were travelling towards their homeland, PAKISTAN. My father was one of them. The South-East Asia was still burning, people were still being killed. Trains were still coming with thousands of dead bodies from India to Pakistan. It was a challenging task to refuge all these migrants who came without any food or money, but the Pakistani administration showed great potential and tried their level best to maintain the dignity of their homeland and they succeeded. Majority of the camps were made in Lahore by the Pakistani administration, as almost all the migrants were coming to Lahore. My father along with his mother came there and after managing an accommodation, he settled there. He later shifted to Karachi in 1949 and got married.

The exact number of casualties during the great partition will always remain a matter of debate. Estimates range from around 200,000 to one and a half million (1,500,000). A British contemporary estimate claimed that 180,000 people died. Another contemporary estimate from India put the death toll at around 500,000. The estimate given by Dr. Robert Corruccini and Kaul is about 400,000 deaths with a wide margin of error that is plus or minus 100,000. It also generates the fact that at least 13 million refugees, out of which 10 million from Punjab (a province) alone, comprising four and half million non-Muslims and five and half million Muslims. Along with these facts, approximately 75,000 women were raped and/or abducted across the two sides of the new border.

Chapter 6: Salvation From Bedlam

(You can read Chapter 6 from the above link)


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    • Hunbbel Meer profile image

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 6 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @Binaya. Indeed that is sad and thought-provoking. Sometimes, humans just become barbarians and so uncivilized animals.

    • profile image

      Binaya.Ghimire 6 years ago

      I'm wondering how could people kill their own kind in such large numbers.

    • Hunbbel Meer profile image

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 6 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @homesteadbound: You are spot on! Thats the story all about - a little more humanity, a little learning from the past and redemption of your own soul! :)

      I am about to publish the 6th chapter today, hope you'll like it. You'll also to get to know the imprisonment's reason of Tauseef, and what his redemption of his soul is all about. Waiting for your feedbacks :)

    • Hunbbel Meer profile image

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 6 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      SubRon7: I was born almost 42 years later of that event. I read about the partition in books only and some of our family elders told about the tales in bits and pieces, but I was too young to understand at that time. Though now I am matured enough to concentrate on what exactly would have happened, I am trying to depict it into a story.

      Feeling so sorry about your farm :(

    • homesteadbound profile image

      Cindy Murdoch 6 years ago from Texas

      Your story is a sad one. So much hardship, so much pain, so much grief. It is truly sad that these things ever happened, but then your story says that things like this happened again just a few years ago. You would think that we could be more humane, and could learn from the past, but that seems not to be the case. I feel for you and your country.

    • SubRon7 profile image

      James W. Nelson 6 years ago from eastern North Dakota

      You appear to be a young man, Hunbbel, like maybe you were born much later than this story you are telling. I have, of course, never experienced what your people and family went through, but in a way I can empathize, as, in the early seventies our small family farm was swallowed up, now something I can never return to.

    • writer20 profile image

      Joyce Haragsim 6 years ago from Southern Nevada

      Great hub for your family.

    • Paradise7 profile image

      Paradise7 6 years ago from Upstate New York

      It always seems such a great crime and waste of human life and resources that so very many civilians should suffer the aftershocks of war. Ordinary people with ordinary lives, mostly unpolitical, whose lives are sacrificed or completely disrupted for some political cause or war. You paint these scenes with vivid, heartrending truth.