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The Deoliwallahs: The True Story of the 1962 Chinese-Indian Internment
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The Deoliwallahs: The True Story of the 1962 Chinese-Indian Internment

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  54 ratings  ·  13 reviews

'Humanly compelling, beautifully told ... brings to light a forgotten chapter of Indian history, one we need to remember in these troubled times' PRATAP BHANU MEHTA

'[Joy Ma and Dilip D'Souza] have seamlessly woven together historical facts with personal stories about how the Chinese- Indians lost the country of their birth' YIN MARSH

The untold account of the internment

Kindle Edition
Published January 23rd 2020 by Pan Macmillan India
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Krutika Puranik
Jul 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katya Cengel
Apr 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I consider myself rather well traveled and informed, yet I had never heard of the 1962 Chinese-Indian internment. In reading “the deoli wallahs” I came to understand that I was far from the only one. In the book I learned that even Indian citizens were largely unaware of the fact that their government had imprisoned thousands of their own people during the Sino-Indian War of 1962. The citizens imprisoned were ethnically Chinese, but for the most part they had been living in India for generations ...more
Mei Mei
Aug 09, 2020 rated it liked it
Here’s the thing with books – they tend to trigger a series of emotions known and unknown. Most of it being relatable. You connect with the characters, their lives whether good or troublesome. When you finish reading the book it brings you a sense of joy, heartbreak, calm, and much more. You feel that you have lived a life through the book. This book unsettled me.

The Deoliwallahs is a memoir of sorts about those people who were put into the Chinese internment camp at Deoli in 1962. It is their t
Jack Greenberg
Jul 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Did you know that in 1962 when the border war broke out, racism, prejudice, and war-time hysteria led India’s political leaders to make a number of legal changes which allowed the forced relocation and internment of 3,000 Chinese-Indians? I didn’t before reading this book...

I would highly encourage those unaware to pick up a copy and educate themselves about this shameful chapter of history. Never again begins with never forget.
Apr 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I first learned about this book at its Mumbai launch held at the Nehru Centre. The irony hits me only now as I sit down to write down my thoughts. Under whose leadership the Chinese-Indians were incarcerated, their stories were – perhaps for the first time – being discussed in public, at a venue named after that very politician. The launch was held before the corona lockdown, when the protests against CAA-NRC were raging all over the country and police brutality continued unabated. At a time whe ...more
Apurva Nagpal
Mar 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction

Have you read any book that made you realise how little you knew about certain things and events from our history or how little we’ve been taught about it?

The Deoliwallahs is by Joy Ma and Dilip D’Souza tells the true account of the 1962 Chinese-Indian Internment, a conveniently forgotten chapter from our history.
Shortly after the Indo-China War of 1962, about 3000 innocent Chinese-Indian citizens were rounded up from the Northeast states of India and were sent to a former WW2 POW camp in D
Aditya Lakshay
Oct 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book quite simply serves its purpose.
This book exists to highlight the injustices meted out to Chinese Indians post the 1962 war with China. It serves as a memoir of the harrowing experience these families had to undergo, because they supposedly of Chinese Origin and were, in truth, caught up in the post war idiosyncrasies that nation states do.
In the wake of news of "Concentration Camps" being set up all over the country, one need not look further than this book to estimate the impact such
Shilpa Rao
Jun 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Like most Indians, I had no idea ethnic Chinese settled in India in the mid- and late nineteenth century. That they settled in India as traders, merchants and tea plantation workers, was unknown to me. What is definitely the hardest thing to learn though is how people who had assimilated into the country's culture and traditions were incarcerated during the Sino-India war in 1962. It is heartbreaking to know they did not feel safe to return to live in the country of birth. Hopefully, India not o ...more
Radhika Misra
Sep 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I began reading The Deoliwallahs in June this year. Had to put it away.

When you find out things about your own country that you think only other countries did, you obviously don’t accept it.

And this was me, a reader. There were real people and families that faced this.

A sorry chapter in India’s history. One that the country must apologise for. But the way things are now, I don’t see that happening.

Thank you to the authors for writing this important book.

Brilliant book on a subject very few
Sadiq Kazi
Apr 13, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you have read Rita Chowdhury's Chinatown Days, read this book for the real story of the Chinese-Indians detained in Deoli in the aftermath of the 1962 Indo-China war. Majority of Indians may not even know about this dark, shameful episode in India's modern history. What makes this book relevant today is the question of identity, looks, and what is it to be a citizen. ...more
Rahul S
Jul 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This book weaves together historical facts with personal stories about how numerous Chinese-Indians lost their country of birth (India). And narrates a chapter in India's history that a lot of us are unaware of. ...more
Aug 18, 2020 rated it liked it
This is an important book and an informative one on an episode of Indian history that has largely gone unnoticed. Its unusual format - alternating chapters of history and oral history/memoir - brings alive the relevant context and personal qualities of the Chinese-Indian internment experience.
Dec 07, 2020 rated it it was ok
A historically important story, one that needs to be told and re-told across generations, written in such a tedious manner that it is simply impossible to parse through the pages. Really wish it had been written slightly better, because this story and those people deserve that.
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