“a violence doubly rendered”
Two eminent historians of Sindh, Hamida Khuhro and Mubarak Ali, have written brief assessments of Hotchand. Khuhro found him ‘an opportunist’ who ‘judged against the principles of patriotism … will remain the unrepentant traitor.’ Ali was more forgiving and sought to contextualize his actions as one among a community of responses. After all, there is little wiggle room in the binaries inscribed onto nationalism or colonialism by current historiography: one resists or perishes; one is either a hero or a traitor.
Such binaries are, however, historically inept and socio-culturally corrosive. Hotchand was a node in a vast network, which operated in conjunction the colonial and the princely networks – of khatib, munshi and vakil who made possible the legal and diplomatic work of daily governance.