The ‘Untouchable’ Migrants of Partition
This chapter describes the resettlement of untouchable non-Muslims. It also considers how to reach a group that is not part of the popular imagination and whose history of migration has never been recorded, and has been deemed irrelevant. A quick survey of Punjab’s social history would show that untouchable caste groups were present in sufficient numbers in Punjab. It is suggested that the untouchable castes in West Punjab did not migrate in large numbers, and that they did not resettle in the middle or lower-middle class areas of Delhi. It is also shown that untouchables groups who frequently moved in the Punjab region had already come into contact with the Arya Samaj and, thus, a new Hindu identification. The separation from the upper caste groups resulted in the integration of untouchable migrants with the existing untouchable groups in Delhi. This integration reduced their distinctive experiences of Partition.
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