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Immobile mobilities and free-flowing Sikh movements from Punjab

Anjali Gera Roy
Taylor and Francis
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This essay borrows Bryan Turner’s theory of the ‘enclave society’ to throw light on imperial tactics and strategies deployed to immobilize the transnational movements of Sikhs under imperialism focusing on the Komagata Maru episode [2007. “The Enclave Society: Towards a Sociology of Immobility.” European Journal of Social Theory 10 (2): 287–304]. It proposes the notion of immobile mobilities to argue that while regulated movements from Punjab were catalyzed by imperial policies related to the recruitment of Sikhs in the imperial army, police and railways in the nineteenth century, free movements were immobilized through domestic and international regulations and legislations in the imperial ‘immobility regime’. It begins with providing an overview of the imperial policies through which assisted movements of different Asiatic groups produced sequestered spaces that Turner considers as the features of an enclave society. Then, it proceeds to trace the immobilization of the free flows of Sikhs through strategies of closure, sequestration, isolation and detention. www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/19438192.2016.1175748