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Book : Kashmir’s Untold Story Declassified

BOOK            : KASHMIR’S UNTOLD STORY DECLASSIFIED

AUTHORS    : I.C MALHOTRA & M. RAZA

GENRE         : NON-FICTION

RATINGS     : 2.5/5

Kashmir has always been in the news with incidents like terrorist attacks, stone pelting, Article 37O, Separatists, detentions etc. So one must be aware of this topic to present his/her views with logic and knowledge. Also I got mails from some readers to review this book.

The book Kashmir’s Untold story Declassified (authored by Iqbal Chand Malhotra and Maroof Raza) pertains to chain of events or genesis that lead to the situation in what kashmir is now. It tries to present how conflict around Kashmir arose, how it continued even after independence and why it’s still a thorny issue around Indo Pak Relation Nucleus.

The book is divided into 10 chapters which are not up to expectation from renowned authors like them. The first chapter briefly provides the history that Kashmir went through till the rise of Raja Pratap Singh. The role of British is also revealed in interfering in the affairs of state. The next 2 chapters explains the role of British deep state, Raja Hari Singh and Sheikh Abdullah in endangering the political and communal environment of state. Chapter 4, 5, 6 leads us to the road towards Kashmir joining India and treachery of some British officers in helping gilgit agency to rise as separate entity and later to be occupied by Pakistan. Chapter 7 is almost dedicated towards Abdullah’s ambivalent position towards joining Indian side and how it made situation more fragile. With chapter 8, the Chinese aspect and its design in Kashmir has been analysed and rise of terrorist master cells has been presented. Farooq Abdullah entry in politics of Kashmir is discussed and unique rise of Wahhabi Islam shaping the insurgency in coming future is presented in chapter 9. Chapter 10 is more about on how China and Pak alliance have tried to outplay India in many situations and how India should pursue towards its Kashmir policy.

I am really fond of history and especially of such issues which carries so much theories, conspiracies, etc. Though the authors are very big names but the way they have presented this issue in the book looks like a half-hearted attempt in bringing it to the fore front, I guess our news anchors can do a better job than authors.

The title of the book is misleading, there is not much untold or declassified about this book. I am sure you can find more untold story or declassified information about Kashmir via Wikipedia. The major flaw I felt in this book was the author has discussed very little about rise of Insurgency during late 80’s. Also the 1971 India Pak war and how it affected the resolve of Pakistan to attain Kashmir is not discussed. The flow is not smooth. Whenever we discuss any genesis the time flow pattern should be followed unless simultaneous events have ripples in another time frame. The book is very loose on the concept of flow.

I have read some other history books about Kashmir so I can easily analyse and understand what author is trying to infer. But it will be very difficult for those reader who are not well versed to this topic.

Let’s discuss about positive outcomes of reading this book. The thing I liked is that the author has managed to avoid any political inclination in its narration. Secondly, there are some new information that I was not aware of like involvement of British deep state, operation Datta Khel, Zia’s Operation Topac and role of Sikh officer Major Onkar Singh kalkat. Also the role of china in destabilising situation for India has been discussed thoroughly.

Overall the book is not up to the mark for the issue like that. I will not recommend this book to first time readers or readers who are not aware of some basic Kashmir History.

Thank you all for Reading.

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