Author(s): Yasmin Khan
The partition of India in 1947 promised its people both political and religious freedom - through the liberation of India from British rule, and the creation of the Muslim state of Pakistan. In reality the geographical divide effected an even greater schism of the population, benefiting the few at the expense of the very many, exposing huge numbers of the population to desperate and devastating consequences. Thousands of women were raped, at least one million people were killed, and ten- to fifteen-times that number were forced to leave their homes as refugees. It was one of the first, the most bloody, and remains one of the most significant, events of decolonisation in the twentieth century.