East of the Sun

01 December 2010

Siddhartha Sarma

Tranquebar Press,

270 pages, ` 295

In the spring of 2008, Siddhartha Sarma went on a land trip across east Assam, Nagaland and Manipur, into western Myanmar. He discovered which language you must not speak in Imphal, what Dimapur’s City Sport is, why Assam’s national hero wears a tremendous frown on his face, how to become an ‘international body’ and why tea and conspiracy with a Myanmar army officer could be a bad idea. Sarma’s account is peppered with anecdotes and historical references, and reveals how there is more to India’s eastern frontier than what you read in the newspapers.