This is a photo of one of the best bookshops I know - Gulshan Books, on Residency Road in Srinagar. They are publishers too. They have a wide stock - comprehensive about Kashmir but extending much more widely. And their publishing house has brought back into print many key titles about Kashmir's past, as well as supporting new research.
OK, so that's the shop as it was a few weeks ago - this is the shop as it is now ...
It's a gut wrenching sight. A business built up with such attention and care swept away by flood waters, and as much by the absence of any flood warning. The Rising Kashmir reports that as many as 40,000 books - some of them rare - have been lost.
This is perhaps almost trivial compared to the human suffering inflict by the floods - hundreds dead, hundreds of thousands displaced, communities ruptured. But this too is a grave loss to Kashmir, to its sense of itself - and this too is damage that needs to be made good.
Andrew Whitehead's blog
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