India and Pakistan are preparing to celebrate 70 years of independence from Britain, which occurred at the stroke of midnight on the eve of August 14th 1947.
The separation, however, set off unprecedented communal carnage on both sides of a border hastily created by the British, which split the subcontinent into two separate countries.
Mass migration followed, marred by violence and bloodshed, as about 15 million Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs, fearing discrimination, swapped countries in a political upheaval that cost more than a million lives.
The twin cities of Lahore and Amritsar where split roughly down the middle at partition.
Niranjan Singh was barely 5 years old when he crossed over from the village Bhasin on the Pakistan side to their current home in Sarangra village in Amristar district.
“Everyone used to feel scared, the time was such. We were scared that someone might just come and kill us. We used to be very alert even while sleeping and I used to always sleep with my mother and father.”
India and Pakistan have fought three wars since 1947, and relations remain tense, particularly when it comes to the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir, which both claim in full but rule in parts.
At the Wagah border post, which falls almost mid-way between Amritsar and Lahore, border guards from the two neighbours play out their hostilities, every evening at sunset in a colourfully orchestrated flag ceremony .Thousands of supporters from each country come to witness a rousing show of patriotism from their respective border guards who stomp their feet and shout their lungs out during their daily retreat.