This isn't Divide and Conquer.

  • Dates
    2022 - Ongoing
  • Author
  • Topics Landscape, Social Issues, Documentary
  • Location India

‘This isn’t Divide and Conquer’ investigates how historical events play a part in shaping the Indian landscape and the identity of its people in relation to that.

The map that I grew up with, is different from yours. The map of India that Indians grow up with, is different from the ones Pakistanis grow up with, it is different from what the United Nations sees India to be. It is different from the one that my grandfather grew up with.

I Lost him at the age of 7, and the only memories that I hold of him are the stories from my father and grandmother. One that stuck was the story of my father accompanying him to RIMC, an Indian Military College that he graduated from, to join the Indian Armed Forces. It was a reunion. With Indian Army officials, and to my surprise Pakistani ones as well. The fact was that they had grown up together, learned together, drank together and ate together. But once the conflict starts, they would be face to face against one another

The border is what separates us, it is where history is embedded. History that defines the identity of the land I come from, the land where I lost my grandfather. The hastily drawn line by the British, separated cities, villages and families. Using the photographic medium, ‘This isn’t Divide and Conquer’ investigates how historical events play a part in shaping the Indian Landscape and the identity of its people. Photography along with text and interviews (of people born in Pakistan who had to relocate to India) become a tool to gain clarity on certain questions. Questions that are instrumental for attempts to make sense of this ever-changing region through my personal experience. In my journey to places new and old, this project takes shape. It’s conceived in the 5 states of India that share a border with Pakistan. Trying to understand the direct and indirect impact of the hastily drawn, ill-formed line 76 years ago by the British, as we gained our independence.

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