New Delhi in the mid-1950s forms Raana Haider’s first recollection of India. She accompanied her diplomat father on his posting to New Delhi. Some fifty years later, she was once again living in New Delhi – this time accompanying her diplomat husband. India: Beyond the Taj and the Raj is the account of the author’s travel across the complex tapestry that is India – underlined with historical and literary narratives by generations of writers on India. Vestiges of the Mughal legacy crowned by the Taj Mahal are relived, as are remnants of the Raj. She explores twenty-eight cities and sites – from Agra to Udaipur. While well-frequented destinations are visited: Bombay, Calcutta, Jaipur and Goa; she also follows the trail to less targeted corners of India – Aligarh, Kashmir, Mamallapuram and Somnathpur. Savouring the lingering legacies of bungalows, clubs, hotels, libraries, mansions, palaces and temples, Raana Haider also dips into India’s diverse culinary heritage, delves into traditional crafts and its fusion into contemporary fashion and furnishings and relishes encounters with literary masters – Ruskin Bond, William Dalrymple, Salman Rushdie and Khushwant Singh. Travelers to India will soon discover that India: Beyond Taj and the Raj is the compendium to take the place of an informed co-traveller. This book crowns all earlier published recollections of India penned by a non-Indian writer.
Raana Haider has an MA in Sociology from, the American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon. The author's last book A Perspective in Development: Gender Focus was published by the University Press Limited, Dhaka, Bangladesh in 1995. A second reprint of the book appeared in 2000. An edition of the book was also published by the American University of Cairo Press, Cairo, Egypt in 1996. A life-long indefatigable traveler, Raana Haide's first sojourn to a foreign land was to Syria in 1950. As the daughter and wife of diplomats, travel and discovery are passionate occupations. Raana Haider is also a sociologist with research on her mind and there are places that have touched her heart. Her interests have come together in