In India everyone and their neighbor claim to be an expert on Jammu & Kashmir. No Indian state is as debated as this state. And yes for obvious reasons. It is a state that has been in conflict since Independence. A state that while trying to create its own identity by moving on from the past is also finding it difficult to shake off its past. And it is definitely a conundrum hard to get out of. What gets worse is the judgment people have already passed on it. There is no middle ground. Due to which J&K continues being a tinderbox waiting to explode at any slight provocation. Sad but true.
A Tangled Web is an excellent resource for people who would want to read myriad perspectives about the state. It is not just that but the articles and pieces gives the reader an excellent insight into the conflicting views on the history of the state, its problems and examines the various political, social, cultural and economic issues at play there.
The book tries to bring in as many voices as it possibly can. All these collected essays from eminent writers as well as voices of people who have suffered the brunt of violence in the state. So one can read well written articles by Parvaiz Bukhari, Suhasini Haidar, Jagmohan, Meghnad Desai, Nitasha Kaul, Sonia Jabbar and more…
It is indeed sad that the place which is probably one of the most beautiful places in the world and the most strategically located too is in a perpetual state of conflict. But yet this year has been good for the state and let’s hopes ensuing years follow the same pattern too. Karan Singh writes the foreword for the book and starts off the book with the right note and tenor. Ira Pande has edited the book.
This book is an important contribution to the various literature available on Jammu and Kashmir, do read it if history and current events interest you