Writer Brajinder Kaur Dhillon describes in her book "Dusk to Dawn", the horrific violence she witnessed in Narang Mandi, Sheikhupura during the Partition riots. She lost her father in that violence and narrates the horrors she saw during those days. The magnitude of violence is difficult to understand.
Dhillon’s family lived in the district of Sheikhupura, which was the site of some of the most murderous sprees.
Her father, a Sikh policeman, was killed at the railway station in the town of Narang Mandi as the family cowered in fear with hundreds of other Sikhs and Hindus in the common area of their nearby multifamily housing complex.
“The train would come every day, and some of those goons would come out of it with their knives and swords and bats,” she recalls. “And they would threaten, they would scream in the streets, ‘Come out, come out!’ ”
Later, when her family sought refuge in the Narang Mandi police station, Dhillon looked out the window and saw people being hacked to death in the street. In one instance, she saw a man trying to escape on a bicycle with his wife on the back.
“She was pregnant and they stabbed her—and the baby came out,” she says. “And it was so scary.”
The man fell on top of his wife, and he was also hacked to death. Then Dhillon saw a man, a woman, and a child all on one bicycle suffer the same fate. In her book, she writes that it “seemed as if we were viewing a horror movie”.