I was 21, living on McLeod Road, Lahore, making a living as a graphic artist. It was a great city: the hotbed of design, architecture, culture. The arson started in July '47. To be fair Punjab was set aflame not by Muslims but by Akalis in Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana. Breakpoint was when they raised swords in the Assembly, saying they wouldn't give an inch of Ranjit Singh's turf. Till then, Muslims were communal only in UP, Maharashtra, Bihar, where they were in a minority and insecure. This sabre-rattling and Akali-instigated rioting changed it all.