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As we drew up at Jodhpur airfield, the plane was taking off, and I was due to give a lecture in New Delhi the next day.

But the shepherd turns out to be neither devil nor lunatic. And, wherever there is water, there is an outburst of life: I had the honour of delivering the Maulana Azad Lectures for the year i at New Delhi, and of spending a month as a visiting professor at the University of Peshawar. Or had they merely got tired of standing in the ice-cold water? Here there are running streams and continuous fields of wheat and millet. We admired their reclamation- work at Shamalan and Darwishan, and their diversion-dam below a bluff whose perpendicular lines simulate a man- made castle.

This time too, they were flowing uphill, but now they were moving from south-west to north-east. Could they be the Arghandab and the Helmand? These living monuments of present-day en- gineering are impressive.

Saleem Afridi marked it as to-read Oct 24, Its stature represents a continuous history of human occupation extending over a span of perhaps three thousand years. In I had been tantalized by a glimpse of the fringe of it.

1961 Between Oxus and Jumna by Toynbee s

How much longer is this evil institution going to be treated as if it were not the public crime that it is? His neighbours jumnx their eye on him, and, whatever he plants, they plant. I have drunk my fill of the Jain architecture of the Jhom- pra Mosque. These can fairly claim to have died as martyrs for their faith. There must be half a dozen of these channels between the point where the Kabul and the Swat rivers unite and the further point where they reunite under the lee of the Khattak mountains.



Between Oxus and Jumna by Toynbee s | MCADD-PAHAR

Though the climate is torrid, the soil, here too, is good. If you can, you will have gained some notion of the social revolution that has broken, like a thunderclap, over Rajasthan. It had been an hilarious day. Syed marked it as to-read Oct 05, We knew that we had to look for Maiwand battlefield somewhere in the neighbourhood of the Kushk-i-Nakhud torrent bed, near the point where this broke out from the hills.

The Arachosian Corridor Between Indus, Oxus, and Tigris, the great Iranian plateau stands up like a gigantic fortress, with mountain- ranges serving as its encompassing curtain-walls, and with the super-highlands of Afghanistan, at its north-eastern corner, providing it with an almost impregnable citadel. For now the shepherd rounds up a batch of them and pushes them over the edge and into the inlet of the river between this pro- montory and the next. Alexander planted a Greek colony at Begram, and, in the first century of the Christian Era, a Greek prince, Hermaeus, was still ruling here after Greek rule had evaporated everywhere else.

But today these three historic sites all lie desolate. This canal must be fed by some ampler river than the beggarly Tarnak, but no river is now in view on that side either.

This progressive spread of civilization from its birth-place in Traq to the ends of the Earth has turned the Oikoumene into a house of many mansions. Down there, crops and cultures have never ceased to change. My own stay was for a bare three hours, yet, in that brief time, the beauty of the landscape made an imprint on my mind which will not fade. Forty or fifty miles out from Udaipur airport, the ground be- gan to undulate and break into a spray of jagged rocks, and then foot-hills and mountains began to appear on the hori- zon.

The Yusefzais in the Swat valley, a rib- bon of fertile soil, are making their profits by experimenting in valuable cash crops.

So I fell asleep and woke up next morning to find my- self no nearer to Peshawar than Amballa. If we were to reach Betwene from Ambar, we must abandon the pukka road and commit ourselves to a kuccha one. No more elephants, no more victorious campaigns in India.

But, where fish are baffled, men can find a way, and men have been busily traversing the Hindu Kush since the earliest times to which our records go back.


Between Oxus and Jumna

It is more remarkable that from Beteen the use of the Aramaic alphabet should have spread south-eastwards into the Sub-continent and north-eastwards across the whole breadth of Asia. Our car, parked under a tree below the mosque, has reached the limit for wheels; and a local dog has attached himself to us ex- pectantly.

In the Pre-British Age, they were kept on their toes by having to hold with the sword what they had previously won by it. On two nights running, these wizards conjured last-minute berths for me out of thin air; so I made my long train-journey in comfort. The Uzbegs did not succeed in crossing the Hindu Kush, but, indirectly, the Uzbegs did, nevertheless, change the course of history in the Sub-continent. At Kalabagh they are as suddenly released, to spread them- selves again — this time, miles wide — down all the length of Sind.

Even when it is snowing, and the ground is sodden, many of the human tribesmen go barefoot, and all of them sleep in tents that let in the wind and the sleet. And the old rhythm of pxus alternating with punitive expeditions is not one that either party wishes to revive. All the same, Bwtween must be on board those beyween trains on the two betweej nights of Monday and Tuesday.

If you do not provide them with the amenities that they demand, they decline to stay alive. So I was eager to see Multan with my own eyes; but in I had been disappointed. Her- maeus is said to have fraternised with the Kushans from the other side of the mountain-wall. I netween could not afford to miss that lorry; so, travelling on the ground over the combined breadth of the Indian and the Pakistani Panjab, I must be in Peshawar by Wednesday at dawn.