One of the most amazing benefits of starting Indireads has been the opportunity to interact and become friends with authors on both sides of the India-Pakistan border.
Talking to them I came to two realizations, first the reinforcement of my belief in how similar we are (after all we are the same people and no line drawn in the sand can change that), and secondly, how little each side knows of the other.
My parents were born in Hyderabad Deccan, and while they moved to Karachi, they still have family there. Aunts, uncles and cousins regularly go across to attend weddings and visit on both sides, and we are all very much one big family. And in my own travels across the world, some of my best friends have been Indians, of all faiths and backgrounds.
Having been privileged to have both family and friends across the border, I feel strongly that it is important for people to begin to connect across this real border, but imagined divide, to see that the person on the other side is reflection of oneself.
If we all just begin to connect, we will see how much we have in common—music, food, colors, clothes and wise sayings—are all part of our shared culture and heritage. That’s what Indireads books celebrate and that is the inspiration for Love Across Borders, our first anthology, a collection of short stories to mark the Independence Days of these two neighboring countries, by teaching us how much we have in common to celebrate.
What are some of the things common across the sub-continent that you enjoy?