The Garden of Solitude is a poignant tale of a Kashmiri Pandit family driven away from the Valley in the wake of armed insurgency and political turmoil.
Sridar, a young Kashmiri Pandit boy, is torn apart as he reluctantly leaves his home situated in the beautiful Valley along with his family. The family, like the other Pandits, settle in Jammu, where an entire generation of Kashmiri Pandits spends the rest of their lives suffering from a sense of loneliness and alienation.
Sridar soon begins to find solace in his writings and leave Jammu to pursue full-time writing. However, his love for his homeland brings him back to Kashmir; he is now writing a book on Pandit migration. He is pained to see how the forced migration to Jammu has transformed the once prospering and happy community of Pandits into a pained and estranged populace. Troubled by his tumultuous past, he is now trying to find answers to the questions that define him.
The Garden of Solitude is the first novel in English written by a Kashmiri Pandit about the political turmoil in Kashmir, the migration of Pandits and their life and plight in exile.
Siddhartha Gigoo was born in Srinagar, Kashmir, in 1974. He left Kashmir in 1990 due to the political turmoil and militancy. He studied English Literature at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Currently, he works in New Delhi, where he lives with his wife and daughter. He has also written two poetry books, Fall and Other Poems (1994) and Reflections (1995).
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