India, Pakistan and Bangladesh constituted one country until they got their independence from Britain in 1947. Towards the end of their struggle they demanded that once they achieve their independence they want to be separated based on their faiths. The leaders couldn’t agree that could live peacefully once they controlled their own destiny. The British eventually negotiated a deal where Hindu majority will live in India and Muslim majority will live in East and West Pakistan. East Pakistan will later separate from Pakistan to become Bangladesh.
Before this partition between India and Pakistan there were boundless stories about how Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians and other various religious factions lived harmoniously for centuries. When the independence was achieved somehow this harmony evaporated, and a minority of extremists on all sides were successful in inflaming the hatred towards each other. Millions of people were killed, displaced and lives destroyed at the time of the partition. The impact of this destruction never completely dissipated and some sectors on both sides still would not leave it alone.
This book tries to capture the harmonious era in which the Hindus and Muslims lived side by side like good neighbors, shared their meals, and participated in the ups and downs of their lives and even religious activities. They didn’t feel the need of proving to each other whose religion was superior.
Anul Shetty and Salim Sultan were friends from that era. They went to the same elementary school together when they were children. They separated in their adolescence like most children do. But when they accidentally met again after nearly half a century they became inseparable. Their bond became stronger after each day.
That bond did not disappear after Anul Shetty died. His soul was always present in the hearts of his beloved daughter Manesh and his friend Salim Sultan. Both of them will let not the other forget the presence of Anul’s soul.
When Manesh and Salim’s long lost son Ashok eventually get together and fall in love, that’s when the circle is complete. That is when Anul’s soul could Rest In Peace.