Tag Archives: book corner

BOOK CORNER: THE DEOLI WALLAHS: The True Story of the 1962 Chinese-Indian Internment … Joy Ma … Dilip D’Souza

Copyright@shravancharitymission

    ‘THE DEOLI WALLAHS—The True Story of the 1962 Chinese—Indian Internment’ by Joy Ma & Dilip D’Souza.

    The subject title was first published in 2020 by Pan Macmillan. A citation at the bottom of the cover page of the book by Pratap Bhanu Mehta an Indian Political Scientist says, ‘Humanly compelling, beautifully told … brings to light a forgotten chapter of Indian history, one we need to remember in these troubled times.’

    The title is an untold account of the internment of some 3,000 Chinese—Indians just after the 1962 Sino-Indian War. The narration commences with a long ‘Preface’ followed by the ‘Origins’ chapter which explains where these Chinese-Indians came from. It describes the Chinese debut in India in Achipur and Calcutta, to begin with, and later their migration to other parts of the country which slowly expanded for nearly 200 years after Atchew’s arrival—The first ancestor of the Chinese in India.  

    The title is a mid-length narration of fewer than 200 pages divided into 17 chapters plus Notes and Annexures. In Chinese, they refer to Deoli Camp as chap chung yin (Hakka) or chi chung yin (Pinyin) which translates into a ‘gathered-together camp’ or a ‘concentration camp.’ The Deoli Camp was also used for incarcerating Indian political prisoners and for prisoners of war during World War II.

    Just after the Sino-Indian War of 1962, about 3,000 Chinese-Indians were sent to languish in a disused World War II prisoner of war camp in Deoli, Rajasthan, marking the beginning of a painful five-year-long internment without resolution. At the time of war with China, these ‘Chinese-looking’ people had fallen prey to government suspicion and paranoia which soon seeped into the public consciousness just because their features were Chinese. This is a page of Indian history that comes wrapped in prejudice and fear and is today largely forgotten. But over five decades on, survivors of the internment camp are finally starting to tell their stories. So, is there an apology due from the Government of India to them is a point in question raised in the book.

    The authors of the book record these untold stories through extensive interviews of survivors of the Deoli internment. Through these personal accounts, the authors not only discover a crucial chapter in our history but also document for the first time how the Chinese came to be in India, how they made this country their home and became a significant community, until the war of 1962 that brought on a terrible incarceration, displacement and tragedy to them. The narration is primarily structured around the Chinese-Indian community, who open their hearts and minds to the authors. The Chinese-Indians were considered spies during those times of the Indo-China conflict. I know it for sure because I lived in Shillong then, where my father was a minister in the Assam Cabinet. But then the government had little leeway in terms of thinking otherwise.

    And now my observation on the storytelling. The narration could have been even more forthright. The language is plain English in easy to read format. Since the narration has many personal accounts it gives you a feel as if much is happening in the book but the general plot moves slowly. I particularly found the chapter titled ‘A CONTESTED LINE’ to be very interesting and informative. It gives you a good open view of why the Chinese conflict took place at all. After the Indian-Chinese were released from Deoli Prison they had a long struggle rebuilding their lives. Some stayed back in India and some left for greener pastures abroad. Not many would know that even a ship had docked at the Madras port to take the internees from Deoli to China the ones who were willing to go. The book is a gratifying mix of the China conflict and Deoli’s internment camp in the 5th chapter titled ‘WAR.’ But was there any sense in adding this chapter to the narration because to me it diluted the central agonizing story of those interned at the Deoli camp? However, the chapter titled ‘War’ does raise the Indian flag when it describes the Rezang La Ridge, the scene of the fierce battle that is still remembered in India as the lone glorious chapter in the otherwise depressing story of the 1962 war. But yes, the continuity of the story is momentarily derailed by the chapter titled ‘WAR.’ The book has some illustrating pictures of the Deoli barracks too. The narration lacks the flourish of emotions considering what the families of the protagonists underwent. The authors could have definitely scripted the narrative to be more emotional taking into account the sentiments of the protagonists. The narration of the central plot is not a continuous happening in the book. It is in staccato-bursts because of the several personal accounts. The sequencing of the chapters could have been better. The historical facts are engrossing and interesting when you look back. I guess the chapters don’t sequence well because of certain heavyweight chapters in between the normal chapters that override the main plot of the book but then they are vital for the consummation of the ultimate story. The plot reveals that the Indian Government’s approach towards the ‘Chinese-Indian’ in those times was not soft due to their being treated as spies.

    The authors have compared the Deoli prison camp with the Manzanar prison camp in the US where American-Japanese prisoners were housed during World War II. The book makes a gentle request to the Government of India for a ‘Chinese-Indian memorial’ to mark their trauma. The narration compares the Chinese-Indian prisoners of India with the Japanese-American prisoners of the US which is asymmetric. It highlights that a majority of the Japanese internees remained in the US after their release and even got an official apology from the government of the US after forty-six years, whereas a majority of the Chinese internees left India to start a new life in other countries and never got an apology from the government of India. Towards the end, the narration expresses a flurry of holistic emotions.

    As a reader, I felt the narration should have been more along the central theme of the book than deviating from it off and on or the sequencing of the chapters could have been shuffled when the authors had a meaty story to tell. Of course, the book is more like a personal account of several families that were interned.

    Buried under the ‘Himalayan Blunder’ of 1962 – the humiliating India-China war – is also a tragic story of many Chinese-Indian that is not known to most of India and was quietly ignored by successive governments. Did one know that Deoli in Rajasthan had an internment camp during World War II? Starting in 1931 the British used to detain various leaders of the burgeoning Indian freedom struggle. Five hundred freedom fighters from Bengal to begin with and then, in the 1940s, Jayaprakash Narayan, S.A. Dange, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Jawaharlal Nehru, B.T. Ranadive, S.S. Batliwala, S.G. Patkar and many others were detained here. In the National Archives in New Delhi, there are petitions from the wives of some of these men, asking for a maintenance allowance during their husbands’ incarceration or for their travel expenses to meet their husbands to be reimbursed. The British not surprisingly, rejected them all.

     What I liked about the book was the initiative of the authors to have woven a book around the happenings of the Indo-China conflict which otherwise was unknown to Indians especially when it affected only a minuscule of Chinese-Indian population. The story sets you thinking.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his way through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available on Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day-to-day life. The book is available on Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

AWADH ASSAM AND DALAI LAMA … The Kalachakra

(The story of the man who received His Holiness The Dalai Lama and his retinue in 1959 as a GOI representative when he fled Tibet in 1959. The book was recently launched on 21st November 2022 by His Holiness The Dalai Lama).

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1. Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2. Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22; 31. Bhool Bhulayya 15.9.22; 32. Good Karma 30.9.22; 33. Good name vs Bad Name 15.10.22; Uttarapath—The Grand Trunk Road 1.12.22;

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

BOOK CORNER: DANGER ZONE: The Coming Conflict with China … by Hal Brands and Michael Beckley

Copyright@shravancharitymission

 

    The book enumerates the possibility of why the US-China conflict can happen soon. It is because Beijing is worried that its power is peaking soon. The subject book claims that a decisive showdown between the US and China could come sooner than anyone thinks. Sino-US rivalry is not a marathon, but a sprint that will play out in this very decade only, says the book.

    The book starts with a highly plausible doomsday scenario in January 2025, in a situation where China has invaded Taiwan, putting the US in a bind, and the world on the brink of World War III. It could have been avoided, by reading the signs right, the book claims.

    The authors counter the Thucydides trap theory about a great power replacing another—the threat is not because of China’s inexorable rise but because it knows it has peaked and is desperate. It is strong enough to disrupt the existing order but is losing confidence that time is on its side. This gives it incentives to use force against Japan, and India or teach the Philippines a lesson, or even bring Taiwan to heel.

    The Chinese Communist Party wants to maintain its iron grip on power, regain territories like Taiwan, and force settlements on border disputes with countries from India to Japan. It aims to marginalise the US in Asia.

    This means nothing less than an epochal change in regional and global rules. China’s relentless military build-up, its trade, infrastructure and investment gambits across Eurasia (ie. land consisting of Europe and Asia), its overland supply routes and access to the Indian Ocean, its power play in international institutions and its ideological offensive against liberal democracy—in all of this China knows the US is in its way, invested as it is in preventing a rival in Eurasia.

    The US-China relationship, the book says, unravelled gradually, then suddenly in recent years, with Donald Trump’s presidency, Covid and Xi Jinping’s own sense of urgency. China has been concealing a sharp slowdown, resource shortfalls, and a demographic catastrophe brought on by its one-child policy. They see the red alerts about their country’s rise and the CCP’s (Chinese Communist Party’s) fate.

    The confrontation is forcing others to take sides, creating a ring of rivals. The Galwan clash of 2020 with India might be a victory for China, but it lost more than it gained, as New Delhi accelerated its swing towards America. Chinese aggression is beginning to backfire, as it creates fear and resistance from countries near and far that have benefitted from the American world order.

    Australia has leaned towards the US, the EU calls China a ‘systematic rival’. As China seeks greater arks of influence, it is confronting greater arcs of hostility. Even the Sino-Russian autocratic axis has its costs, as Vladimir Putin’s aggression in Ukraine raises the costs of teaming up with him. CCP officials are haunted by the twin spectres of economic decay and geopolitical encirclement, claims the book—and this peaking-power dynamic is precisely where the danger lies. A revisionist power that feels its moment is slipping away will act more impulsively than the one that thinks tomorrow will be better than today.

    The book advises the US to take calculated risks, and avoid reckless ones. It must take on China’s high-tech economic imperialism, digital authoritarianism and its intent to take Taiwan. It must be willing to anger China and bait it into strategic blunders, rather than push it into a corner where violence becomes the only option.

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our Publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 8 prestigious libraries of the US that includes Harvard College Library; Harvard University Library; Library of Congress; University of Washington, Seattle; University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Yale University, New Haven; University of Chicago; University of North Carolina, at Chapel Hill University Libraries. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in libraries and archives of Canada, Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai; Jaipuria Institute of Management, Noida; India. Shoolini University, Yogananda Knowledge Center, Himachal Pradesh and Azim Premzi University, Bangalore).  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi; Available for reading in Indian National Bibliography, March 2016, in the literature section, in Central Reference Library, Ministry of Culture, India, Belvedere, Kolkata-700022)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be the undying characteristics of Lucknow. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014. It is included for reading in Askews and Holts Library Services, Lancashire, U.K; Herrick District Library, Holland and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library, Mecklenburg County in North Carolina, USA; Black Gold Cooperative Library Administration, Arroyo Grande, California).

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

RHYTHM … in poems

(Published in January 2019. The book contains 50 poems. The poems describe our day to day life. The book is available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha)

MIRAGE

(Published in February 2020. The book is a collection of eight short stories available in Amazon, Flipkart and Notion Press)

Short stories, Book reviews and Articles published in Bhavan’s Journal: 1.Reality and Perception, 15.10.19; 2.Sending the Wrong Message, 31.5.20; 3. Eagle versus Scholars June, 15 & 20 2020; 4. Indica, 15.8.20; 5. The Story of King Chitraketu, August 31 2020; 6. Breaking Through the Chakravyuh, September 30 2020. 7. The Questioning Spouse, October 31, 2020; 8. Happy Days, November 15, 2020; 9. The Karma Cycle of Paddy and Wheat, December 15, 2020; 10. Power Vs Influence, January 31, 2021; 11. Three Refugees, March 15, 2021; 12. Rise and Fall of Ajatashatru, March 31, 2021; 13. Reformed Ruler, May 15, 2021; 14. A Lasting Name, May 31, 2021; 15. Are Animals Better Teachers?, June 16, 2021; 16. Book Review: The Gram Swaraj, 1.7.21; 17. Right Age for Achievements, 15.7.21; 18. Big Things Have Small Beginnings, 15.8.21; 19. Where is Gangaridai?, 15.9.21; 20. Confront the Donkey Within You 30.9.21; 21. Know Your Strengths 15.10.21; 22. Poverty 15.11.21; 23. Top View 30.11.21; 24. The Bansuriwala 15.1.22; 25. Sale of Alaska 15.2.22; 26. The Dimasa Kingdom 28.2.22; 27. Buried Treasure 15.4.22; 28. The Kingdom of Pragjyotisha 30.4.22; 29. Who is more useful? 15.5.22; 30. The White Swan from Lake Mansarovar 30.6.22; 31. Bhool Bhulayya 15.9.22; 32. Good Karma 30.9.22; 33. Good name vs Bad Name 15.10.22

(ALL THE ABOVE BOOK TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

BOOK CORNER VIDEO: THE THREE QUESTIONS by Leo Tolstoy

Copyright@shravancharitymission

 

 

By Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 7 prestigious libraries of the US, including, Harvard University and Library of Congress. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in Libraries and archives of Canada and Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai)  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be its undying characteristic. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha

(ALL THE ABOVE TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****

 

 

 

BOOK CORNER VIDEO: The Snows of Kilimanjaro by Ernest Hemingway

Copyright@shravancharitymission

 

Video by Kamlesh Tripathi

*

https://kamleshsujata.wordpress.com

*

Share it if you like it

*

Shravan Charity Mission is an NGO that works for poor children suffering from life threatening diseases especially cancer. Our posts are meant for our readers that includes both children and adults and it has a huge variety in terms of content. We also accept donations for our mission. Should you wish to donate for the cause. The bank details are given below:

NAME OF ACCOUNT: SHRAVAN CHARITY MISSION

Account no: 680510110004635 (BANK OF INDIA)

IFSC code: BKID0006805

*

Our publications

GLOOM BEHIND THE SMILE

(The book is about a young cancer patient. Now archived in 7 prestigious libraries of the US, including, Harvard University and Library of Congress. It can also be accessed in MIT through Worldcat.org. Besides, it is also available for reading in Libraries and archives of Canada and Cancer Aid and Research Foundation Mumbai)  

ONE TO TANGO … RIA’S ODYSSEY

(Is a book on ‘singlehood’ about a Delhi girl now archived in Connemara Library, Chennai and Delhi Public Library, GOI, Ministry of Culture, Delhi)

AADAB LUCKNOW … FOND MEMORIES

(Is a fiction written around the great city of Nawabs—Lucknow. It describes Lucknow in great detail and also talks about its Hindu-Muslim amity. That happens to be its undying characteristic. The book was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival of 2014)

REFRACTIONS … FROM THE PRISM OF GOD

(Co-published by Cankids–Kidscan, a pan India NGO and Shravan Charity Mission, that works for Child cancer in India. The book is endorsed by Ms Preetha Reddy, MD Apollo Hospitals Group. It was launched in Lucknow International Literary Festival 2016)

TYPICAL TALE OF AN INDIAN SALESMAN

(Is a story of an Indian salesman who is, humbly qualified. Yet he fights his ways through unceasing uncertainties to reach the top. A good read not only for salesmen. The book was launched on 10th February, 2018 in Gorakhpur Lit-Fest. Now available in Amazon, Flipkart and Onlinegatha

(ALL THE ABOVE TITLES ARE AVAILABLE FOR SALE IN AMAZON, FLIPKART AND OTHER ONLINE STORES OR YOU COULD EVEN WRITE TO US FOR A COPY)

*****