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Background

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The Demographic and Humanitarian Consequences of the Partition

 

Circa 1947: Convoy of Sikhs carrying their belongings on their heads as they migrate to East Punjab after the division of India. (Photo by Margaret Bourke-White/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)

Circa 1947: Convoy of Sikhs carrying their belongings on their heads as they migrate to East Punjab after the division of India. (Photo by Margaret Bourke-White/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images)

 

Team

Cambridge

Faculty Director: Jennifer Leaning; FXB Center,Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health
Muhammad Sarib Hussain, Harvard College
Nabil Khan, Havard Divinity School

India

Mihir Bhatt, All India Disaster Mitigation Institute
Uma Chakravarti, Project Director, Delhi
Mandvi Dogra, Haryana
Rimple Mehta, Kolkata
Jhuma Sen, Kolkata
Navsharan Singh, Delhi
Srikant Singh, Delhi

Pakistan

Dr. Shahram Azhar, Habib University, Karachi
Dr. Yaqoob Bangash, Information Technology University, Lahore
Dr. Ali Raza, Lahore University of Management Sciences, Lahore
Dr. Nadhra Khan, Lahore University of Management Sciences, Lahore

About the Humanitarian Project

Research is now underway on the immediate and wide-ranging humanitarian consequences of this massive forced movement of people across what suddenly became international borders. The project aims to focus on the relief efforts and rehabilitation of refugees by government at all levels and by local or national organizations.  This research effort involves retrieval and review of records and documents in the U.S. and Europe, India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh

Research directed by Professor Jennifer Leaning (FXB Center,Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health) documents the experiences of people during their flight and temporary settlement en route between nations from a humanitarian perspective. The numbers have only been estimated; the most precise demographic study for the Punjab region, developed by Leaning’s team, has been published in a 2008 paper published in Population Studies. The ongoing work examines a dimension not yet touched in the historical literature: How civil society, medical professionals, ordinary people, and a wide array of government agencies collectively attempted to provide care and protection to the millions who crossed the borders and, along the way, over days, weeks, and/or months, experienced extreme physical and emotional threat and hardship.