Back in 1947, when India was separated into two halves, many families had to leave their homes in the newly formed Pakistan and move to India. The two nations were at war, massacring people without a second thought, and because survival was more important, a lot of families were forced to relocate. But, it wasn’t just the land they left behind, but millions of memories that have their roots there. They even lost some of their loved ones during the chaos, where they were ruthlessly gunned down.
In this day and age in India, you’ll still come across people (your grandparents, mostly) who’ll enthrall you with tales from the time of the Partition. Their age might not allow them to remember each and every detail, but they’re still able to describe their homes back then, now in Pakistan. You can take away a person’s home, but you cannot take away their memories.
One such gentleman is the 91-year-old Krishna Khanna, who lives in Meerut with his family. He wanted to visit his ancestral home in Udhoke, Pakistan, but was denied a visa by the Pakistani government again and again for the past 10 years. But, finally his perseverance paid off!
He has finally been granted permission to visit Udhoke and Sheikhupura in Pakistan, his ancestral homes. The icing on the cake was that three other family members were also permitted to travel with him.
On receiving the news, a teary-eyed Khanna told TOI, “In the last decade, I made several attempts to secure a visa from the Pakistan high commission, but was refused every time. They wanted a local sponsor from Pakistan, as it is a mandatory requirement to secure the document. And I had none.”
Khanna will be accompanied by his 80-year-old brother Jagdish and another family member on his trip to Pakistan.
Watch his face light up upon receiving the good news:
Considering the bitter relationship between India and its neighbor, this gesture is symbolic of the fact that maybe, all is not yet lost. There is still love between the two nations, a love that will be kept alive in the hearts of the people!