Life Back Then

Family photos - Ashok Khanna

Ashok Khanna has a B.Sc. (Econ) from London University, an MBA and PhD from Stanford. He has worked with Deloitte Touche (London, New York), taught at New York University's Stern Graduate School of Business, and worked for more than 25 years for the World Bank. He got his first chance to travel out of India when he was seventeen and has not stopped traveling since. In 1998, he began to sporadically write travelogues for friends. These essays increased over time as he traveled more after retiring, and also cover other interests.  Bloomsbury will publish his book on Emperor Ashoka in India in 2019.

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Remembering Anglo-Indians in Delhi during the 1960s and 1970s

Jamil Urfi's book 'Biswin Sadi Memoirs, growing up in Delhi during the 1960's and 70's' which is a nostalgic, personal remembrance of the bygone 20th century or the Biswin Sadi was published last year. Urfi was a campus correspondent for the ‘Times of India' Publication Youth Times during his student days in the 1980's. He has an abiding interest in history, architecture, period publications and popular cinema of the 1960s and 1970s-themes which figure prominently in his latest book. He is a teacher at the University of Delhi.

Editor's note: This is an extract from the author's book 'Biswin Sadi Memoirs, growing up in Delhi during the 1960's and 70's. CinnamonTeal Publishing, Goa, 2018.

Author's note: My family settled in Delhi in 1967. We lived in Nizamuddin East, a residential colony of South Delhi. My neighbours included several Punjabi families, who had been displaced by the Partition, and one Anglo-Indian couple, Mr. & Mrs. Andrews.  I write about our interaction with the Andrews family in this extract from my book. They lived in the flat just above our house. Though we were reserved with them in our initial communications, with time, living together for nearly two decades, we became close to the Andrews Family.

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All those Years of my School-life: An Introspection, Sixty Years Later

Bal Anand was born in 1943, in a village about 20 km south of Ludhiana, in a family of saint-scholars who practised Ayurveda. Graduated from DAV College, Jalandhar, and did Master in English Literature from Govt. College, Ludhiana. After a stint for a few years as lecturer, joined the Indian Foreign Service. Served in nine different countries and retired as India's High commissioner to New Zealand. Now reading, reflecting and writing in nest in Greater Noida.

The result of my Matriculation Examination, the life-defining culmination of the ten years of studies in school, then conducted by the Panjab (note spellings) University, Chandigarh, was declared on 16th of June in 1959. When introduced in 1897 - with 1,779 candidates declared successful - by the then Punjab University, Lahore, the examination used to cover the entire original-i.e. the Punjab of Five Rivers- and also included the vast territories of the native states of the region.

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My mother’s family photo 1942

Amit Shah is a retired publishing executive and owner of Green Comma, an editorial services company. He lives in Lovell, Maine, with frequent stays in Somerville, MA.

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India Before Independence: Memories

Subodh Mathur and Sfoorti Mathur, with help from Rakshat Hooja, have co-edited and published a book India Before Independence: Memories. This is a collection of true stories related to the lives of people before India became independent in 1947. In a few stories the narrative continues beyond India's independence. There are 31 contributing authors. They are Indians from different parts of India, Britishers, and one Pakistani.

The stories are based on the memories of the authors, which we know are sometimes fuzzy and selective. Some of the memories are about national events, some are personal remembrances, and some are mini biographies.

The purpose of collecting the stories in this book is to convey a sense of life as it happened during the pre-Independence years. We hope older readers will find the book nostalgic, while younger ones will enjoy the personalized narrative of history.

The stories originally appeared on this website. There are many more pre-Independence and post-Independence stories on this website.

Cover Page. 2019
Top. Left, A Punjabi couple in Lahore 1930s. Right, A man from Rajasthan who went to Assam as a teenager in the 1980s
Bottom. Left, A Bengali woman, 1930s. Right, a Kannada family, early 1900s
Middle. Left, A Parsi gentleman, 1940s. Right, An Agra woman's wedding proposal photo, 1930s

An excerpt from the book is available here as a pdf file.

The full book is available at:

Amazon ebook $ 3.00

Amazon ebook India Rs. 200

Amazon print $ 12.99 plus shipping

India print - Rs. 500 plus shipping

© Subodh Mathur.  Published July 2019.