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The tragedy of Partition provided writers with the occasion to write about the plight of the people of the subcontinent and to bring home the point of the impact of British rule, which had previously boasted of a “civilizing mission”. The vast volume of Partition fiction in English, Urdu, Hindi, Bengali, and other languages of the subcontinent faithfully record the gruesome human disaster in the wake of Partition. The incredible suffering and bewilderment of the people of the subcontinent have been a favourite theme with Indian and Pakistani writers. Public frenzy, communal hatred, extreme disintegration, and large-scale sectarian violence are some of the critical issues amply found in the works of Khushwant Singh’s Train to Pakistan (1956), Attia Hosain’s Sunlight on a Broken Column (1961), Rahi Masoom Raza’s Adha Gaon (1966), Bhisham Sahni’s Tamas (1973), Amitav Ghosh’s The Shadow Lines (1988), Bapsi Sidhwa’s Ice-Candy-Man (1991), short stories by Saadat Hassan Manto, and the poems of Faiz Ahmed Faiz. In her novel Ice-Candy-Man (1991), Bapsi Sidhwa narrates the story of an upheaval of the 1947 partition of India through the eyes of a young Parsee girl Lenny growing up in Lahore. The character of Ayah is introduced to refer to the several millions of displaced, looted, and raped Hindus and Muslims during one of the harshest political phases in the subcontinent’s history. This paper endeavours to portray the trauma of communal violence as depicted by Bapsi Sidhwa in her novel, Ice-Candy-Man.
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