Fault Lines Of Nationhood
Though India and Pakistan emerged as independent nation-states sixty years ago, debates about the basis of Indian and Pakistani nationhood continue to reverberate through the politics of the two countries. Pakistan has been wracked by disputes over identity from its very inception. It split into two countries in 1971 when the Eastern wing broke away to form Bangladesh. It has since been wrestling with issues of Punjabi dominance and Islamisation, which have put minorities of all sorts on the defensive. Independent India under Nehru's leadership proclaimed secular and egalitarian goals but theory and practice were often divergent. In recent years, the success of Hindu nationalist forces at the polls has raised new and uncomfortable questions for Indian minorities too. In Fault Lines of Nationhood, Gyanendra Pandey and Yunas Samad reflect on the construction of national identity in India and Pakistan from colonial times to the present day and examine how the working of democracy has created new majorities and minorities and helped to politicise issues of religion and ethnicity, region and language, class and caste. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in the dynamics of state building in India and Pakistan and the conflicting demands of national unity and social and political inclusiveness.