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Oshima Rekhi

The 1947 Partition Archive

The 1947 Partition Archive

Oshima Rekhi was born in Iran and brought up in Lahore. She was named Zarangez at birth. At the age of five years she was given for adoption to a Sikh couple living in Kanpur. Professor Pritam Singh, her foster father, migrated from Kanpur to Lahore just to raise her there. Then, she was given a new name, Victoria Zarangez Singh.
She studied in Lahore and developed an interest in politics and social services, and joined the All India Students Organization, despite her father's disapproval. She worked as a member while continuing her studies. Later she joined a nursing course and started serving as a nurse.

Mrs. Rekhi says, "My foster father loved me very much. He always wished best for me. One day one of his acquaintances came and proposed to me. I refused, as I was focused on my work. He again asked and I refused again. When he came for the third time, I could not say no. I accepted and we got married in 1944. It was a simple wedding. And then the name Oshima was given to me." After her marriage and birth of her first child, she continued to work as a nurse. In 1947, feeling that the environment was not safe in Lahore, her husband sent her and their child to Jalandhar. She reached there and then moved on to Manali for the health of her child. Lots of rumors reached to Oshima: riots had started in Lahore and there was no trace of her husband. When Partition was announced she was in Manali, while the rest of her family was elsewhere.

A few months after Partition, when conditions had settled down, her husband reached to her in Manali. He told her the horrifying scenes he witnessed during Partition in Lahore. By this time Mrs. Rekhi was mother of two. She started social work which she continues today. She runs Aruna Aasaf Ali trust which works for disadvantaged children. Today, she lives with her daughter live in Chandigarh, while her son is settled in the United States.

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Details

  • Title: Oshima Rekhi
  • Location Created: Chandigarh, UT, India
  • Original Language: English
  • Type: Photo
  • Migrated To: Did not migrate
  • Migrated From: Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan
  • Interviewer: Shayda Bano
  • Current Location: Chandigarh, UT, India
  • Birth Year: 1921
  • Birth Place: Qazvin, Iran

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