Torn from the Roots - A Partition Memoir

Torn from the Roots - A Partition Memoir

Product ID: 18420

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Author: Kamla Patel
Translator(s): Uma Randeria
Publisher: Kali/Women Unlimited
Year: 2006
Language: English
Pages: 236
ISBN/UPC (if available): 8188965278


An extraordinary first-hand account of operation Recovery, carried out by the newly constituted governments of India and Pakistan in 1947, to recover women and children who had been abducted during the riots and chaos of Partition and restore them to their families.

Kamla Patel, right-hand woman of Mridula Sarabhai who oversaw Operation Recovery, conveys the pathos and urgency of those turbulent times in her candid, no-holds-barred memoir of the three yeas that she spent in Pakistan and the camps she ran for rescued women in Lahore, Amritsar and Jalandhar; of how women were exchanged likes oranges and apples; of the heartbreaking stores she heard and the lives he saved. Compassionate in its humanitarianism, this book is also of rare archival value, restoring women to a central place in the history of India’s Partition.


KAMLA PATEL was born in 1912 and spent her early yeas in Mahatma Gandhi’s Sabarmati Ashram, Ahmedabad. She participated in the civil disobedience movement and later in Gandhi’s constructive programme. In 1944 she joined he Kasturba Gandhi National Memorial Trust in Bombay. After Indian Independence in 1947 she was invited by Mridula Sarabhai to join the Organisation for Recovery of Abducted Women and was with her till 1950. Subsequently, she worked in the Khadi and Village Industries Commission till 1968. She died in 1992.


UMA RANDERIA was one of the translators of The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi from Gujarati into English. She has also translated collections of short stories from Russian and Bengali into Gujarati. Her Gujarati translation of the Award-winning Bengali novel, Sei Samay by Sunil Gangopadhyay, has received two awards from the Gujarati Sahitya Parishad and the Gujarat Sahitya Akademi.


Translator’s Note



Torn From the Roots

Mridula Sarabhai-A Tribute

Appendix 1
Number of recoveries from Pakistan 16-12-1947 to 31-08-1955
Number of recoveries from India 16-12-1947 to 31-8-1955

Appendix 2
Agreement between India and Pakistan