The Outsider’s Curse : A Memoir of the First “Outsider” Lady IAS Officer of Jammu & Kashmir by Sonali Kumar, Prasenjeet Kumar

The book is worth reading for anyone even remotely interested in the Kashmir problem.

The outsider’s curse : a memoir of the first “outsider” lady ias officer of jammu & kashmir

You will find plenty of books on Kashmir by politicians, journalists, army officers, Kashmiri Muslims and Pandits narrating their experiences. BUT you will never find—an outsider IAS officer’s perspective.

Sonali Kumar, a starry-eyed young woman, joined the IAS in 1979 to make a difference to India. She was allotted the state of Jammu & Kashmir where she spent 37 years trying to understand the people of Kashmir, solve their problems and focus on development.

What she found was disturbing—an apartheid regime exists in Kashmir where the humanity is divided between insiders and outsiders; where outsiders nearly become second class citizens.

She tried to make the administrative system “people friendly” but soon became a victim herself.

Little did she know that her quest for development in Kashmir will become a fight against corruption, nepotism, communalism and anti-nationalism—all mixed together.

She doesn’t realise that the vested interests she had hurt, will soon hit back. And may even cost her career, house, perks and happiness.

Will she succeed? Or will she fail?

Sonali Kumar, as an outsider, brings a fresh perspective to the Kashmir problem NEVER TOLD BEFORE. The book is worth reading for anyone even remotely interested in the Kashmir problem.

Genre: POLITICAL SCIENCE / World / Asian

Secondary Genre: BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Personal Memoirs

Language: English

Keywords: Kashmir Problem, Kashmir Conflict, India Pakistan, Sheikh Abdullah Farooq Abdullah Omar Abdullah, Terrorism, Jihad, Gandhi

Word Count: 66,000 words

Sales info:

This book is from an Amazon #1 Best-selling author.

Sample text:

Chapter I
 Meeting Sheikh Abdullah

THE TWO-HOUR journey from Baramulla to the Civil Secretariat in Srinagar, rattling over some 54 kilometres (km) of potholed road, was by now a daily affair for me. Among my companions in the bus that day in July 1980 were two smelly sheep and a couple of live chicken in the hands of a freckled youngster.

A wizened old woman was sitting on the floor carrying a plastic bag containing a few live fishes in some water. I must be looking quite strange in a formal silk saree and bindi (the round sticker that some Indian women sport on their foreheads) but no one seemed to mind.

The journey was important because we were to meet Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah, the legendary Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir that day. He had to decide whether I should be allowed to join the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) cadre of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) state or not.

But am I not getting ahead of myself? So, let me start from the beginning.



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