Dr. Bapsi Sidhwa

April 6, 2013

The 1947 Partition Archive

The 1947 Partition Archive
Delhi, India

Many episodes from renowned author Dr. Bapsi Sidhwa's memories of Partition are captured in the fictionalized story that unfolds in “Cracking India” (aka “Ice Candy Man”), which was made into the popular film “Earth.”

One powerful episode during her childhood took place a few months before Partition. Dr. Bapsi Sidhwa, born Bapsi Bhandara, was walking with their gardener when they both came across a gunny sack. When opened, they found the body of a very young man inside. She recalls being deeply struck by that sight, realizing the futility of a young life with so much lost potential.

After Partition, at the age of 19, Dr. Sidhwa married and moved to Mumbai. She had a son and a daughter. Her marriage ended when she was 23 and she moved back to Lahore, though her son stayed behind. Due to border restrictions, she was unable to see him again for over a decade. She describes this as a devastating time. He finally was able to join her in Lahore in his late teens. She recalls going to Wagah border daily for four months to receive him, until one day he finally arrived.


  • Title: Dr. Bapsi Sidhwa
  • Date Created: April 6, 2013
  • Location Created: Berkeley, California, United States
  • Type: Photo
  • Migrated To: Did not migrate during Partition
  • Migrated From: Karachi, Punjab, Pakistan
  • Interviewer: Dr. Guneeta Singh Bhalla
  • Current Location: Houston, Texas, United States
  • Camera Person: Reena Kapoor
  • Birth Year: 1938
  • Birth Place: Karachi, Punjab, Pakistan

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