How can one talk about war with children without ramming propaganda down their throats? History books don’t do it; neither does the media. Even in fiction, the plot is usually predicated around having to defeat an enemy. There have been children’s books, however, that have taken on the tricky task of breaking down the complexities of conflict situations. Paro Anand’s No Guns at My Son’s Funeral, published in 2005, is one of them.
No Guns born out of a project that Paro Anand worked on with children in Baramullah, Kashmir, through the story of a young boy, gives us a “child’s-eye view of exactly how complicated loyalties can get in this tinderbox situation”. In the backdrop of Kargil, Anand was struck by how every child in those tense times wanted peace, and realized that their stories needed to be heard.