The repatriation of 1973 and the re-making of modern south Asia
Datta, A. (2011) The repatriation of 1973 and the re-making of modern south Asia. Contemporary South Asia, 19 (1). pp. 61-74. ISSN 1469-364X (Special Issue: Annual Conference Edition of the British Association for South Asian Studies )
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1080/09584935.2010.549556
In the aftermath of the 1971 war, nearly 250,000 people found themselves stranded in various parts of the subcontinent. These 'trapped minorities' became hostages in a complex negotiation process that highlighted how questions of citizenship and belonging remained unresolved in post-Partition South Asia. By studying three groups - the non-Bengalis, the Bengalis and the prisoners of war in a comparative perspective, this paper re-visits the question of who was welcome within certain borders and on what terms. It argues that these decisions depended not just on the state's policies towards 'outsiders' but also upon its own relationship with its minority communities.