It’s basic human nature to explore the true story of our origin of the community, religion or race. It’s that nature which has given birth to the history as a stream of academia. Different ideologies, rulers, and nations have abused history to suit their agenda. History has been twisted to show Greek as first intellectual and successful culture. Although we had more ancient cultures in Egypt or Babylon or India. History is to show native Indians in America as uncultured barbaric. Although they had the great Mayan culture much before Europeans even settled down as gatherers. It has been used to suppress the true culture and identities of aborigines of Australia.
Who knows its abuse better than the victims themselves? Closer home, In India, history has been shamelessly twisted to maintain European supremacy. English and German propagated Aryan invasion theory. They tried to prove that the sophisticated culture of India was imported from Europe or Central Asia. This is now proven wrong with new data uncovered with advancing technology. (Read more about this here). Historians tried to prove that native religions of India are superstitious belief systems. Historians also said that all good things in our culture came with Mughals. And all knowledge came from Europeans. So much so that our festivals also have been maligned and continue to be, even today.
Now Indians, with more knowledge and advance data on their side, are asserting their identity. They are trying to rewrite some of the passages of India’s history. Now there is a concerted effort to bring down these initiatives. As usual, the trick is to make it sound like non-academic, non-intellectual exercise. And that it is being taken up with an agenda of supressing the minorities.
This is exactly what has been done by Rupam Jain and Tom Lasseter, in their article in Reuters. The article starts with the mention of a meeting in January last year, of a committee appointed by Modi Government. It mentions the minutes of the meeting, apparently available with Reuters (though no copy has been provided in the article of the said MoM). The article says
“Minutes of the meeting, reviewed by Reuters, and interviews with committee members set out its aims: to use evidence such as archaeological finds and DNA to prove that today’s Hindus are directly descended from the land’s first inhabitants many thousands of years ago, and make the case that ancient Hindu scriptures are fact, not myth.”
Immediately after claiming that Modi Government wants to rewrite the history, Reuter mentions alleged violence against Muslims
“For India’s Muslims, who have pointed to incidents of religious violence and discrimination since Modi took office in 2014, the development is ominous. The head of Muslim party All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, Asaduddin Owaisi, said his people had “never felt so marginalized in the independent history of India.
Let’s assume Reuters has real MoM of the meeting and assertion about rewriting the history is correct. How does it, but, connect to the so-called religious violence against Muslims? If the archaeological data proves that Hindu Scriptures contain real History, how does that become anti-Muslim? But suppressing this truth, if its proven, will definitely be anti-Hindu. Why do the so-called liberal media fear the truth so much
After this Reuters goes on quoting some disconnected (with this government committee) statements of few RSS leaders. The statements say that all Indians irrespective of their religion have the same ancestry. This is mentioned to make the exercise by government look like the one to further RSS agenda. Whether claim about common ancestry is true or not, its logic cannot be brushed aside. An attempt at showing “mix genes” of Indian population has been proven wrong many times over. (Read this article of Swarajya). Undoubtedly, the “South Asian” genes are uniform and point to common ancestry. Later the article goes into predictable line and quotes Nehru that its misleading to call Indian culture a Hindu culture.
A country with more than 80% Hindus, does not have Hindu culture is itself idiotic concept. Even if it’s a belief held by someone like Nehru. The culture got a bit modified with the Muslim and Christian rule for hundreds of years. But, the continuity of culture from pre-Islamic era to modern India is amazing in itself. The Vedic rituals on all occasions (from births to marriage to death) are almost same from north to south and west to east across India, even today. This itself is a testimony of a continuous and distinct Hindu culture.
Further, the article repeats the point about mass migration, quoting Romila Thapar:
“if the Hindus are to have primacy as citizens in a Hindu Rashtra (kingdom), their foundational religion cannot be an imported one.” To assert that primacy, nationalists need to claim descent from ancestors and a religion that was indigenous,
In fact, Thapar’s insistence on mass migration / Aryan invasion theory itself raises a question. Why has Ms. Thapar and her ilk of historians not taken new findings into account in assessing or re-assessing theory of Aryan invasion? Is it to deny Hindus a claim to Hindu Rashtra?
In summary, the article tries to insinuate that the attempt at reviewing the history is a political exercise. And it puts minority at risk. Article tries to imply that Indians don’t have right to question and reassess their own history. This comes out of a constant fear of left-leaning intellectuals that Hindu scriptures may prove right after all. That the principles which keep Hindus defensive about their own religion may be destroyed with true History.