Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Dog without borders...

I am really intrigued by this female dog (at 6.52 in clipwho crisscrosses/d the India-Pakistan border near Pul Kanjri, a small village near Amritsar, for her lunches and dinners . 

Sarah Singh has documented the dog in her award-winning film The Sky Below
Singh wrote about the dog in her blog too: "...got to the fencing that denotes the border area of the two Punjabs near Pul Kanjri, a small village about 20 km from Amritsar -- quite a lot of barbed wire that weaves in and out and circles around itself as it creates a barrier about 10 ft high and 5 ft thick -- with an electric current running through to fry those who test the division at night...

"I was there during the mid-day sun, and against this metallic web of lines, a black female dog edged her way through from one side to the other, negotiating the twists and turns of the barbed wire in a manner which suggested her familiarity with the routine. A deft approach by hungry dog in the rising heat."

When I heard about the dog I sent an email to Singh. "Yes, towards the end of the film there is a story which correlates to a dog crossing the border to be fed by security forces on both sides --- as luck would have it, I did get a chance to film a dog crossing through some barbed wire ---but the barbed wire is next to the border, not on it.  It serves as an initial barrier," she wrote back.

Interestingly, this isn't the only story of a friendly dog caught between two unfriendly security posts. Pakistani writer Saadat Hasan Manto's 
The Dog of Tetwal is also about man's best friend who wagged his tail happily at both Indian and Pakistani soldiers but sadly "died a dog's death".


  1. Thank God at least a dog is living the dream of millions of Indians and Pakistanis....The dream of one day having breakfast in Amritsar, lunch in Lahore, evening tea and snacks in Pindi and finally whisky and dinner in Peshwar...and the complete journey done while enjoying the sites sounds and meeting different people on the way and without being hassled and questioned by security forces for being born on the wrong side of the border.

  2. @Dudenator- finally whisky and dinner in Peshwar... The whisky is better left to the Indian side of Punjab :) But yes, do share the sentiment otherwise..!

  3. For a long while now, I have been exclusively relying on the sub-continental intelligentsia living in the west (Ali Tariq, Selman Rushdie et al) for insights regarding the subcontinent. And I can’t believe that the idea of local blogs, as a much more effective and vivid source, has eluded me all this time.
    By the mere act of thumping through your blog I came to appreciate the intricate and subtle social aspects of the state of affairs there at a level I will never come to by only reading pertinent novels and essays!

    I am really impressed, and as crazy as it may sound I wish you guys will have a EU like union in the near future.

  4. Haitham, the best comment ever! Thank you :)

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