Pilgrimage to the past
BY ANITA JOSHUA
Lahore: A Sentimental Journey, Pran Nevile, Penguin, Rs. 250
First published in 1993 from his memories of a city that circumstances forced him to leave, the revised publication comes after his lone visit back home since Independence. Returning to the city of his moorings in 1997, Nevile brings to this edition the contrast in the Lahore of his memory and the city as it is today.
Nostalgia apart, the pain of Partition comes across most vividly in the epilogue penned after his visit. Only upon his visit does Nevile realise that a friend — to whose memory he had dedicated the first edition of the book — was very much alive.
For Lahorias, Nevile's book will dust out the cobwebs that would have set in on their collective memories by now as they battle advancing age. To others, Nevile tries to explain the magnetic pull of the city which has survived the bitterness of Partition.