Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Taseer on Partition and Pak violence

Few people of Aatish Taseer’s generation have experienced Partition as much as he has. For the majority, on either side of the India-Pakistan border, it survives as a defining political rivalry. For some, with its tales of migration and loss, it is a painful episode in the family’s history. But for the half-Pakistani author, who was brought up in New Delhi by his Sikh mother, the Partition of 1947 was a lot more than that.

For Mr. Taseer, now 30, the relationship with his father had everything to do with Partition and the enmity it cemented. His father was Salman Taseer, the former governor of Pakistan’s Punjab province who was killed by an Islamic extremist, his own bodyguard, in January.

For the elder Taseer, who lived in Lahore with his Pakistani family, having an Indian connection – a son born from a short-lived relationship with an Indian woman and who called India his home – proved problematic for his political career.

Long before the assassination, this and disagreements on the nature of Pakistani society and politics, of which the younger Taseer was critical, strained relations between the two. By the time the governor of Punjab was killed, father and son were no longer on speaking terms.

Full report here WSJ blogs

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