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Timeline of book bans.

Ban on books before their release is a common occurrence in India. . Book bans are usually issued under Section 95 of the CrPC. Section 96 of the CrPC provides for application to High Court to set aside declaration of forfeiture. This page provides examples of how authors - academic or otherwise - have faced backlash from the public and the State for their work, and the responses of the Courts to these situations. You can read about it here ,
In case we have missed on listing any instance of book banned, please use the report button to tell us more.

 

2020

 
 
Name Of Book : Gunning for the Godman: The True Story Behind Asaram’s Conviction.
 
Author : Ajay Lamba
 
State : Delhi
 
Description : A stay-order was imposed on the publishing of the book by by the Patiala Court of Delhi at the plea of the co-accused of Asaram on grounds that it was defamatory and could prejudice her impending trial. The order was later over-turned by the Delhi High Court after the publisher Harper Collins filed a subsequent plea.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/delhi-high-court-vacates-stay-on-publication-of-book-on-asaram-bapus-conviction/article32668778.ece#
 

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2020

 
 
Name Of Book : Delhi Riots: The Untold Story
 
Author : Monika Arora, Sonali Chitalkar and Prerna Malhotra.
 
State : Delhi
 
Description : The publishing house Bloomsbury dropped the book after the authors planned an unauthorised book launch inviting BJP leader Kapil Mishra, who had given incendiary speeches before the riots led to protests by leading literary figures. The book was picked up by a different publishers and is due for release.

Source : https://www.deccanherald.com/national/bloomsbury-india-withdraws-from-publishing-controversial-book-on-delhi-riots-876605.html
 

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2017

 
 
Name Of Book : Godman to Tycoon: The Untold Story of Baba Ramdev
 
Author : Not Provided
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : It was banned on the ground that it was extremely defamatory in nature for the protagonist.

Source : https://www.thequint.com/lifestyle/books/priyanka-pathak-narain-author-of-explosive-ramdev-biography
 

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2015-2016

 
 
Name Of Book : Madhorubhagan
 
Author : Perumal Murugan
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : It was alleged that the book contained materials that hurts the sentiments of the community, defamed women and outraged religious feelings. Subsequently after several protests, the author withdrew all the unsold copies of this novel. Petition were filed in the Madras High Court in order to ban the book but the petition was dismissed and book didn’t got banned.1

Source : http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/perumal-murugan-book-controversy-and-madras-high-court/article14476037.ece
 

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2015

 
 
Name Of Book : Ocean Wringed World- trans azhi Soozh Ulagu
 
Author : Joe D’Cruz
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Narayana initially withdrew from publishing the translation of Joe D'Cruz' novel after he came out in support of Narendra Modi's candidacy. The publisher reconsidered after a year if the book could be published.

Source : https://navayana.org/blog/2014/04/15/the-storm-in-the-dcruz-ocean/?v=c86ee0d9d7ed
 

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2014

 
 
Name Of Book : Sahara: The Untold Story
 
Author : Tamal Bandyopadhyay
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : A stay order was ordered on the release of this book by the Calcutta High Court. Though the book was released, but with a disclaimer given by Sahara.

Source : https://scroll.in/article/807460/how-the-sahara-group-fought-to-prevent-a-book-about-its-business-being-published
 

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2014

 
 
Name Of Book : The Descent of Air India
 
Author : Jitendra Bhargava
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : The author who worked for almost two decades with Air India brings out his insider view about the ground reality of the company. All the book was withdrawn later on by the publisher because of defamation charges.

Source : https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/bloomsbury-withdraws-book-the-descent-of-air-india-blaming-praful-patel/articleshow/28860338.cms
 

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2014

 
 
Name Of Book : Santsurya Tukaram and Loksakha Dnyaneshwar
 
Author : Anand Yadav
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : A magistrate in Pune ordered to destroy the copies of these two novels which is based on the lives of Sant Dnyaneshwar and Sant Tukaram. It was alleged that the contents of these novels were defamatory.2

Source : https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/pune/destroy-defamatory-books-on-saints-court/
 

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2014

 
 
Name Of Book : The Hindus: An Alternative History
 
Author : Wendy Doniger
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : The book was withdrawn from the Indian market, prompting widespread concerns about the state of free speech in India. But after a period of twelve months, the book was republished under a different publisher.

Source : https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/pune/destroy-defamatory-books-on-saints-court/
 

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2013

 
 
Name Of Book : Dhundi
 
Author : Yogesh Master
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Several Hindu organisations protested against this book and accused it to contain objectionable materials against god Ganesha.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/author-of-kannada-novel-dhundi-arrested/article5074797.ece
 

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2013

 
 
Name Of Book : Meendezhum Pandiyar Varalaru
 
Author : K. Senthil Mallar
 
State : Tamil Nadu
 
Description : It was alleged that certain contents in this book was abusive against other castes and in the nature of spreading hatred and disharmony. SO, the Madras HC ordered to make alterations in the book and lifted the forfeiture.3

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/sedition-case-filed-against-author-of-meendezhum-pandiyar-varalaru/article4830943.ece
 

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2011

 
 
Name Of Book : Great Soul: Mahatma Gandhi and his Struggle with India
 
Author : Joseph Lelyveld
 
State : Gujarat
 
Description : It was interpreted and suggested in this biographical book that M.K. Gandhi was bisexual. Whereas according to the author the book only says that he was deeply attached to Kallenbach and did not explicitly stated that Gandhi was bisexual.4

Source : https://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/01/books/gandhi-biography-by-joseph-lelyveld-roils-india.html?pagewanted=all
 

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2010

 
 
Name Of Book : The Red Sari
 
Author : Javier Moro
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Originally published in Spanish by the name ‘El Sari Rojo’, this book was alleged to be violating the privacy of a person for monetary gain. However, it was released in India in Jan, 2015 as it was not officially banned.

Source : https://www.indiatoday.in/education-today/gk-current-affairs/story/the-red-sari-banned-biography-on-sonia-gandhi-finally-released-in-india-236907-2015-01-22
 

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2010

 
 
Name Of Book : Such a Long Journey
 
Author : Rohinton Mistry
 
State : Mumbai
 
Description : Withdrawn by the Mumbai University from its Bachelor of Art (English) syllabus. The book allegedly contained anti-Shiv Sena passages and remarks derogatory to Maharastrians.5

Source : https://www.theguardian.com/world/2010/oct/19/mumbai-university-removes-mistry-book
 

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2009

 
 
Name Of Book : Jinnah: India, Partition, Independence
 
Author : Jaswant Singh
 
State : Gujarat
 
Description : Banned for containing defamatory references to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/Gujarat-bans-Jaswantrsquos-book-on-Jinnah/article16875771.ece
 

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2008

 
 
Name Of Book : The Life of Sri Aurobindo
 
Author : Peter Heehs
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : It was alleged that the book contains objectionable matters depicting distorted facts about the life and character of Sri Aurobindo. In 2004, a stay order was passed by the Odisha High Court on the release of the book.

Source : https://magazine.outlookindia.com/story/the-lives-of-sri-aurobindo/289582
 

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2007

 
 
Name Of Book : Islam: A Concept of Political World Invasion
 
Author : R.V. Bhasin
 
State : Maharashtra
 
Description : SC upheld the ban and said that the author had used insulting comments on Muslim community, which is an aggravated form of criticism and can hurt the religious sentiments of Muslims.7

Source : https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/SC-upholds-ban-on-book-against-Islam/articleshow/5822303.cms
 

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2006

 
 
Name Of Book : The Da Vinci Code
 
Author : Dan Brown
 
State : Nagaland
 
Description : It was alleged that the novel could hurt the sentiments of the Christian beliefs. Ban was rejected by SC and several HCs .

Source : https://www.theguardian.com/world/2006/may/24/books.india
 

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2005

 
 
Name Of Book : The True Furqan
 
Author : Al Saffee & Al Mahdee
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Islamic groups declared the book as a Christian propaganda and claimed that it slyly mocked at Islam. Some even claimed it was a US-Israel pact to insult Islam. Though it was essentially a Christian world versus Islam phenomenon, the Indian government took exception to it and banned its import.8

Source : https://web.archive.org/web/20150424042524/http://www.cbec.gov.in/customs/cs-act/notifications/notfns-2k5/csnt78-2k5.htm
 

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2004

 
 
Name Of Book : Shivaji: Hindu King in Islamic India
 
Author : James Laine
 
State : Maharashtra
 
Description : In 2004, this book was banned as it contained disparaging remarks about Chhatrapati Shivaji. But the ban was lifted in 2010 by the Supreme Court.9

Source : https://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/report-supreme-court-upholds-lifting-of-ban-on-shivaji-book-1407570
 

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2003

 
 
Name Of Book : Lajja
 
Author : Tasleema Nasreen
 
State : West Bengal
 

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2003

 
 
Name Of Book : Dwikhandito
 
Author : Taslima Nasreen
 
State : West Bengal
 
Description : Banned for allegedly hurting the sentiments of the Muslim community. On 22nd September, 2005, the Calcutta High Court lifted the ban.11

Source : https://www.business-standard.com/article/current-affairs/taslima-nasreen-book-dwikhandito-once-banned-bengal-govt-now-in-english-118031100465_1.html
 

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2002

 
 
Name Of Book : Five Past Midnight in Bhopal
 
Author : Dominique Lapierre and Javier Moro
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : The book was banned after Swaraj Puri, the commissioner of Bhopal during that period, filed a defamation suit. Later, the ban was lifted by the Madhya Pradesh high court.12

Source : https://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/01/books/gandhi-biography-by-joseph-lelyveld-roils-india.html?pagewanted=all
 

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2001

 
 
Name Of Book : Bhavsagar Granth
 
Author : Written by amost 30 authors under the direction of Baba Bhaniara
 
State : Punjab
 
Description : Banned by the Punjab government for hurting the religious feelings of Sikh community.

Source : http://www.frontline.in/static/html/fl1822/18220490.htm
 

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2001

 
 
Name Of Book : The Myth of the Holy Cow
 
Author : Dwijendra Narayan Jha
 
State : Nationwide
 

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2000

 
 
Name Of Book : Towards Freedom
 
Author : Sumit Sarkar and K.N. Panikkar
 
State : Nationwide
 

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1997

 
 
Name Of Book : Basava Vachana Deepti
 
Author : Mate Mahadevi
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : It was banned because she changed Basavanna’s pen name from ‘Kudalasangama Deva’ to ‘Linga Deva’.17

Source : https://www.livelaw.in/sc-upholds-ban-mate-mahadevis-book-even-agreed-right-interpret-religion/
 

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1995

 
 
Name Of Book : The Moor’s Last Sigh
 
Author : Salman Rushdie
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : The Indian government placed a de facto ban on the novel, claiming that the fictional Ramar Fielding seemed to be a thinly veiled version of Bal Thackeray, one of India's most prominent Hindu nationalist politicians. But later in 1996, the ban was lifted by the Supreme Court.15

Source : https://www.deseret.com/1996/3/17/19231086/india-removes-its-ban-on-latest-rusdie-novel
 

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1991

 
 
Name Of Book : Understanding Islam through Hadis
 
Author : Ram Swarup
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : It tackles the issues of political Islam. It was claimed that the book was offensive to Muslims.16

Source : https://www.scoopwhoop.com/inothernews/books-banned-in-india/
 

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1989

 
 
Name Of Book : Soft Target: How the Indian Intelligence Service Penetrated Canada
 
Author : Zuhair Kashmeri & Brian McAndrew
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : The authors argue that Indian intelligence agencies, determined to discredit the Sikh bid for an independent state, penetrated not only Sikh communities but also the RCMP and CSIS. The book claims the government of India was involved in the plane's bombing.18

Source : https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/danielle-crittenden/banned-books-week_b_984910.html
 

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1988

 
 
Name Of Book : The Polyester Prince: The Rise of Dhirubhai Ambani
 
Author : Hamish McDonald
 
State : Mumbai
 

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1984

 
 
Name Of Book : Smash and Grab: Annexation of Sikkim
 
Author : Sunanda K. Dattaray
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : The book dealt with India's annexation of Sikkim. The Delhi High Court had stopped its publication after a political officer station in Gangtok at the time filed a defamation suit. The book was later allowed for release.20

Source : https://scroll.in/article/820287/why-this-book-on-indias-annexation-of-sikkim-needs-to-be-read-today
 

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1983

 
 
Name Of Book : The Price of Power: Kissinger and Nixon in the White House
 
Author : Seymour Hersh
 
State : Nationwide
 

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1979

 
 
Name Of Book : Who Killed Gandhi
 
Author : Lourenco De Sadvandor
 
State : Nationwide
 

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1976

 
 
Name Of Book : India Independent
 
Author : Charles Bettelheim
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Banned for criticizing the policies of the Indian government.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/books/you-cant-read-this-book/article2953626.ece
 

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1975

 
 
Name Of Book : Nehru: A Political Biography
 
Author : Michael Edwards
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Government considered grievous factual errors in this book.

Source : https://www.livemint.com/Leisure/gsCAjtgJpoOe3RiVVggd3L/A-portrait-that-got-Jawaharlal-Nehru-wrong.html
 

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1975

 
 
Name Of Book : Early Islam
 
Author : Desmond Stewart
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : The book purportedly contains grievous factual errors.

Source : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_books_banned_in_India
 

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1970

 
 
Name Of Book : Man from Moscow
 
Author : Greville Wynne
 
State : Nationwide
 

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1969

 
 
Name Of Book : A Struggle between two lines over the question of How to deal with U.S. imperialism.
 
Author : Fan Asid-Chu
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : This book cannot be imported into India.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/books/you-cant-read-this-book/article2953626.ece
 

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1968

 
 
Name Of Book : The Jewel in the Lotus
 
Author : Allen Edwardes
 
State : Nationwide
 

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1964

 
 
Name Of Book : Lady Chatterley’s Lover
 
Author : D.H. Lawrence
 
State : Nationwide
 

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1964

 
 
Name Of Book : An Area of Darkness
 
Author : V.S. Naipaul
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Banned for its negative portrayal of India and its people.29

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/books/literary-review/fifty-years-ago-naipauls-an-area-of-darkness-was-banned/article6552122.ece
 

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1963

 
 
Name Of Book : Unarmed Victory
 
Author : Bertrand Russell
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : The book dealt with the Sino-Indian War which India lost.30

Source : https://www.telegraphindia.com/7-days/publish-and-be-banned/cid/496824
 

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1963

 
 
Name Of Book : Nepal
 
Author : Toni Hagen
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Not much info. is available

Source : Not Provided
 

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1963

 
 
Name Of Book : Ayesha
 
Author : Kurt Frischler
 
State : Nationwide
 

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1962

 
 
Name Of Book : Nine Hours to Rama
 
Author : Stanley Wolpert
 
State : Nationwide ban
 
Description : The book was thought to be justifying the actions of Nathuram Godse who murdered Gandhi.

Source : https://theprint.in/opinion/when-nehrus-india-banned-a-story-on-gandhis-murder-and-godses-past/185177/
 

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1960

 
 
Name Of Book : The Lotus and the Rama
 
Author : Arthur Koestler
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Criticized the Indian democracy. It cannot be imported into India. Also, this book has often been criticized as ill-researched.

Source : https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/advertising-marketing/some-books-that-met-a-banned-fate-in-india/slideshow/30518943.cms
 

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1959

 
 
Name Of Book : The Heart of India
 
Author : Alexander Campbell
 
State : Nationwide ban
 
Description : The book is a fictionalized and humorous account of Indian bureaucracy and economic policy-making.

Source : https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/blogs/policypundit/the-heart-of-india/
 

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1958

 
 
Name Of Book : Captive Kashmir
 
Author : Aziz Beg
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : This book cannot be imported into India.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/books/you-cant-read-this-book/article2953626.ece
 

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1956

 
 
Name Of Book : Rama Retold or The Ramayana (American edn.)
 
Author : Aubrey Menen
 
State : Nationwide
 

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1955

 
 
Name Of Book : Dark Urge
 
Author : Robert W. Taylor
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : This book cannot be imported into India.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/books/you-cant-read-this-book/article2953626.ece
 

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1955

 
 
Name Of Book : What has religion done for mankind
 
Author : Watchtower Bible and Tract Society
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : This book tries to refute Eastern religions and cannot be imported into India.

Source : https://www.thehindu.com/books/you-cant-read-this-book/article2953626.ece
 

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1954

 
 
Name Of Book : Bhupat Singh
 
Author : Kaluwank Ravatwank
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Not much info. is available

Source : Not Provided
 

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1952

 
 
Name Of Book : Marka-e-Somnath
 
Author : Maulana Muhammad Sadiq Hussain Sahab Sadiq Siddhiqui Sardanvi
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Written in Urdu, cannot be imported into India.

Source : https://www.business-standard.com/article/opinion/banned-in-india-the-1930s-1960s-106052301151_1.html
 

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1952

 
 
Name Of Book : Chandramohini
 
Author : Ansar Nasiri
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Not much info. is available

Source : Not Provided
 

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1950

 
 
Name Of Book : Pakistan-Pasmanzarwa Peshmanzar
 
Author : Hameed Anwar
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Originally written in Urdu, cannot be imported into India.

Source : https://www.sify.com/news/books-banned-of-words-and-woes-imagegallery-national-ocorvLcjecisi.html
 

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1950

 
 
Name Of Book : Cease-Fire
 
Author : Agha Babar
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : Originally written in Urdu, cannot be imported into India.

Source : https://www.business-standard.com/article/opinion/banned-in-india-the-1930s-1960s-106052301151_1.html
 

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1950

 
 
Name Of Book : Khak Aur Khoon
 
Author : Naseem Hijazi
 
State : Nationwide
 
Description : This book portrays the true face of the Hindu fanaticism at the time of Independence when the Hindus tried to rob the Muslims who were trying to escape to Pakistan during the partition.

Source : Not Provided
 

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