Witness to Surrender Siddiq Salik ISBN 984 05 1374 5 1997 264pp 215x136mm HB Tk.300.00 US$23.00
[ROAD TO BANGLADESH SERIES is designed to present published accounts of the background to the emergence of Bangladesh. Books in the series should be an invaluable collection for those interested in South Asian affairs, particularly students and scholars of politics, economic development and social transformation.]
South Asia exploded in 197 1. Throughout this fateful year Siddiq Salik was in Dhaka as a uniquely privileged observer and participant in the political and human drama which culminated in the Indo-Pakistan war and the creation of Bangladesh. During his two years as a prisoner of war, he was able to ponder and digest the facts and analyse the complex circumstances which underlay the high drama.
He has produced an authoritative narrative, dispassionate in tone and firmly anchored in fact. After setting the scene with a comprehensive overview of the political turbulence of the period, he gives us the first detailed professional account of the war itself ever to be published.
Born in a remote village of Pakistan, Siddiq Salik studied English Literature and International Affairs at the Punjab University, Lahore, He began his career as a lecturer but soon tamed to journalism, working in the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting before joining the Pakistan Army as a Public Relations Officer. He came to Bangladesh (then East Pakistan) in January 1970 on a tour of duty which ended on 16 December 1971 with the fall of Dhaka. After two years as a prisoner of war in India, Siddiq Salik returned to the Army, which he served until his death in the fateful Bahawalpur crash in 1988.