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on 23 February 2004
This is the only book I have read on atrocities against the Sikhs in the late 70's and through the 80's that is written by a non-Sikh and a non-Indian for that matter. It is truly remarkable due to the author’s style of investigating and writing, once I started the book I really couldn’t put it down. I have read many books on Sikhs and Sikhism there was much new information in this book that alone warrants a read.
Although the book does focus primarily on atrocities against the Sikhs it does to a limited extent tackle the issue from the other side. Some parts of the book are very deep and I found very emotional, its a must read for all young Sikhs living in the west today who may have not really grasped what has been going on in India for the last 25 years or so. Cynthia Mahmood has done a great job writing about a very difficult and controversial subject through the eyes of a anthropologist who has tried to be neutral in but at time cannot help see the plight of Sikhs in Punjab.
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on 23 June 2000
In order to understand the political strains of racism in India you need to read this. The amazing way no Westeners really remember or knew about this Genocide and the way the Indians attempt to brush it under the carpet is still apparent. If you wish to gain an understanding about the Sikhs you MUST buy this book! If you are SIKH you really need to read this to deepen your resolve. One of the best books I have ever read!
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on 17 December 1998
Since 1984 we have lived in a dark age where Sikh youths are killed and disappear without trace and no one willing to help, or too scared speak out.
This is a personnal account of my family who have suffered under the Indiain Goverment.
My relatives were Baptised Sikhs who took active part in peaceful protests against the discriminatation of minorities in Punjab.
After the Attack on the Holiest Shrine of the Sikhs , in June 1984, the army went from village to village picking up baptised Sikhs. They arrested my relative who was only 18 at the time. After years of searching and hitting brick walls in the courts of Punjab, no trace was found of my relative. Till this day 14 years on, he is one of the many statistics, of the genocide perpotrated by the Indian Government on the orthodox Sikhs of the Punjab. After a frustrating 14 years , I am pleased to see that some God - Fearing journalists and Academics like Mrs. Mahmood and Joyce-Pettigrew who have had first hand experience of the Sikh struggle for Human Rights and Self Determination; and have shown bravery and courage in portraying The Sikhs as Human Beings trying to survive in a war situation under severe constraints. Unlike some journalists from the Western World, who go back to the Britsih empire days and who have been brought up with the film Gandhi live in a dream world thinking about the peaceful and non violent Indians - yet the Sikhs and other moniorities know better 0ver 100,000 Sikhs killed since 1984 - 50,000 Kashmiris killed - 20,000 Christains killed in Nagaland and the countless untouchables daily killed since 'Independence'. I hope this book will educate the masses and help understand the Sikh struggle.
One day the Sikh will be able to breathe the air of freedom.
The book is well written , but there are certain religious and political aspects in the book that i did not agree with, that do not go with the Sikh Philososphy.
Vaheguru Jee Ka Khalsa, Vaheguru Jee Kee Fateh ! Khalsa belongs to The Almighty, Victory Belomgs to The Almighty !
(The Sikh Greeting)
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on 8 December 1998
I have read this book with shock, As a Sikh born in the Uk a have not experienced the life styles of our brothers and sister in our homeland. I can only dream of what they must have gone through. I have only read in the British media about the "Terrorists Sikhs killing Hindus" yet this book puts the side of the Sikhs and the youth who picked up the gun to defend themselves from the rulers be they "Sikh or Hindu". It brought back memories of stories my mum used to tell us about the Sikhs and the struggle they had to go through to surive, it is a shame and hundereds off years later the Sikhs still struggle to live a life what their Great Guru's had hoped for. I certianly have changed my opion on the Sikh struggle for a Sikh homeland and pray to God that the writer and other writers will speak up against the oppression the Sikhs are going through. I know hope to go to the Punjab so see for my self and vist our historical shrines. I am have been woken up from my deep sleep and hope others to will feel like they to have. We have sat back and turned a blind eye to the suffering of our brothers and sister for too long.
God bless.
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on 1 January 2004
An excellent book written by a non-sikh, non-indian and non-bias person. This book gives us a true insight into what really happened in 1984. This book tells us about most of the things the world did not know when so many innocent sikhs were bring killed all across india back in 1984. 1984 will never be forgotten and the scars will never fade. This book has an in depth explination of before 1984, the leading up of 1984, the aftermath of 1984 and now. this book also gives a brief but sound knowledge of Sikhi and a glossary is included. This book is not just for sikhs but in my opionion, every Sikh ought to read this book, especially those who are unaware of what did happen in 1984.
Wahe Guru Jee Ka Khalsa Wahe Guru Jee Ki Fathe
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on 5 April 1999
I loved this book. It was very powerful. This book had a very unbyast opinion. I hope you read it. It has changed my thoughts on the Sikh problems.
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on 28 June 2011
This book is a rare find when dealing with the sad event known as Operation Blue Star, and the 'troubles' in the Punjab in the late seventies up to the early nineties.

It presents balanced research with eye-witness accounts of Indian government brutality and divide and conquer tactics that led to the fight for fair treatment and equality.

Highly recommended.
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on 5 December 2007
I have used this book for my dissertation a very thoughtful and touching book. Sikh calls for an independant homeland are tackled with a Sikh aspect unlike many books within this genre. Praise must be issued to the author who details interviews with Sikh soldiers who discuss in details the true story behind Operation Blue Star. Sikhs calls for increased autonomy within Punjab are also discussed. In all a fantastic book which should be read!!!
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