True To Their Salt: The British Indian Army And An Alternative History Of Decolonization
- Author: Ravindra Rathee
- Publisher: Fourth Estate
- ISBN: 9789356290310
True to Their Salt is a radical retelling of how India came to be colonized by a handful of Europeans in the eighteenth century, how the British held sway over the country for almost two centuries, and their sudden departure from India in 1947, all told from the perspective of Indian soldiers. The British held India by an army predominantly comprising Indian soldiers, and relied on their fidelity. This loyalty stood the test of time but was eventually breached during the Second World War, leading to India's independence. This book looks at the world of the Indian soldiers who enlisted in the armies of India under British rule.
In India, the recording of military history has been piecemeal, with attention focused on specific decades, epochs and wars. There has been very little literature that brings together the rich
history of the Indian Army, with its vast experience in international and national wars.
Ravindra Rathee seeks to fill this literary lacuna--and brings a personal perspective to this urgency. His research stems from his grandfather's service to the Raj during the Second World War. True to Their Salt is not just a story of war and bloodshed for another country--it is an in-depth survey of the professional layers that involved the running of the military: from recruitment to salary structure, and from how Indian soldiers preserved their faith to how they dealt with their frustration at the racism they encountered.
With persuasive flair and rich detail, Rathee rewrites India's military history, even as he tells a page-turning story that takes the reader through the turbulent centuries of British Indian history.