Page 102. " ‘Those Leaguers plan to abscond with a whole thirty minutes’ "

Following the partition of India, a standard time zone was adopted in the newly independent state of Pakistan putting it 30 minutes behind Indian time. This meant that technically on 15th August, the midnight stroke of India’s independence, it was still 11:30 pm of previous day in West Pakistan. Therefore, Pakistan still celebrates the anniversary of their nation’s independence on 14th August.

Page 105. " 'The Old Fort, that blackened ruin’ "

Purana Qila (The Old Fort) is the ancient fortress founded by the second Mughal Emperor Humayun in 1533. Purana Qila and its environs flourished as the city of Delhi

Ringed by walls of up to 65 feet high and three arched gateways, the Old Fort was central to the city of New Delhi when Edwin Lutyens designed the new capital of British India in 1920s. During the Partition of India, in August 1947 the Purana Qila became a refugee camp for Muslims migrating to newly founded Pakistan and remained functional until 1948.

Video documentary and history of the Old Fort

Page 110. " ‘pictures of Vishnu in each of his avatars’ "
Statue of Vishni at Bangcock airport
GNU Free Documentation LicenseStatue of Vishnu at Bangkok airport - Credit: Saliko

Vishnu is the one of the three central Hindu Gods who is preserver and protector of the universe. His role is to return to the earth in troubled times and restore the balance of good and evil.

Vishnu is represented with a human body with four arms and blue skin. He is represented standing on a lotus flower and in each hand he is carrying a conch, a chakra, lotus flower and mace.

Full profile of the God Vishnu>>

Page 117. " ‘Those Brave Lalas, warrior Pathans’ "

The warrior-like Pathans (or Pashtuns) form one of the world's largest tribal societies in an area stretching from North-West Pakistan to South-East Afghanistan. It is tradition that to safeguard his clan’s honour, a Pathun will sacrifice everything even his life, according to the Pathan proverb, 'He is not a Pathun who does not give a blow for a pinch.'

Pathuns are an important social community in Pakistan where they are the second-largest ethnic group and many people of Pathun descent hold high positions in the military and government, including Ahmed Karzai, President of Afghanistan and Ayub Khan, who was President of Pakistan from 1958 to 1969.

More recently, the Pathuns gained worldwide attention as the main ethnic contingent in the Taliban,

Pashtun War chants

Page 120. " ‘Earl Mountbatten of Burma held a press conference at which he announced the partition of India’ "

On 3 June 1947, Earl Mountbatten, the last Viceroy of India, made a speech to Indian Parliament announcing the plans for independence and partition of India.

This Video shows the original news footage of his speech

Page 121. " ‘before the first William Methwold’ "

William Methwold was an English merchant and colonial administrator in India credited with identifying the site of Bombay as a strategic port. In 1667 he persuaded the British to acquire Bombay from the Portuguese as a suitable trading point with the East.

Page 122. " 'An equestrian statue of the Mahrata warrior king, Sivaji’ "
Statue of Shivaji
Creative Commons AttributionStatue of Shivaji - Credit: Masukar

Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj was a warrior king of medieval India from 1627 - 1680, who laid the foundations of the Maratha Empire prior to the invasion by the Mughal emperors.

The statue of the King riding his horse is the centre monument in the Sivaji Park, the largest park in Mumbai. Unusually the king is depicted without a sword and his arm outstretched in front of him. Built in 1966 with funds collected from the local population, this statue reflects the state government’s pacifist policies of the early independence era.

Page 123. " ‘The Koli Fishermen’ "


Koli Fishermen
Creative Commons AttributionKoli Fishermen - Credit: Genericavatar

The Koli are a community of fisher-folk living in the Western Coastal area of Maharashtra. In Marathi the word koli means spider or one who weaves a web or net. These fishermen were the first people to inhabit the seven islands that later developed into the city of Mumbai (Bombay). Sadly their culture is slowly disappearing as the city develops on them and most of the fishermen today are living on the edge of poverty.