The Candid Eye

August 9, 2009

Distortions of Indian history – Part 11

 Previous Related Article:-

Taj Mahal – A Hindu Temple??

Source of the following text:- Article by Dr Radhasyam Brahmachari

The Distorted History of Taj Mahal:

There is no doubt that Taj Mahal in Agra is the most beautiful architectural marvel in the entire world and hence it is called one of the great wonders of the world. But who is the author of this excellent exhibit of architecture? Opinions in this regard are highly contentious. The general notion is that, it is the creation of Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan. In previous articles, we have seen how the authorship of excellent pieces of architecture in Delhi, Agra and Fatehpur Sikri are being falsely attributed to the foreign Muslim invaders, who occupied and ruled India for nearly eight centuries. So, the question naturally arises – Is the claim of Shah Jahan’s authorship of Taj Mahal true? Or the said view is merely a part of the process of distortion of Indian history, to appease the Muslims? In this article, we shall try to find a plausible reply to these questions.

In this regard, the Encyclopedia Britannica states, “Taj Mahal is a mausoleum complex in Agra, in westernUttar Pradesh state, in northern India, on the southern bank of the Yamuna (Jumna) River. …the Taj Mahal is distinguished as the finest example of Mughal architecture, a blend of Indian, Persian, and Islamic styles. One of the most beautiful structural compositions in the world, the Taj Mahal was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1983. It was built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahān (reigned 1628–58) to immortalize his wifeMumtāz Mahal (“Chosen One of the Palace”). The name Taj Mahal is a derivation of her name. She died in childbirth in 1631, after having been the emperor’s inseparable companion since their marriage in 1612. The plans for the complex have been attributed to various architects of the period, though the chief architect was probably Ustad Ahmad Lahawrī, an Indian of Persian descent.” [1] 

 

The Wikipedia Encyclopedia maintains a similar view and says, The Taj Mahal (pronounced /tɑdʒ məˈhɑl) is amausoleum located in Agra, India, built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan in memory of his favorite wife, Mumtaz Mahal. The Taj Mahal (also “the Taj”) is considered the finest example of Mughal architecture, a style that combines elements from PersianIndian, and Islamic architectural styles. In 1983, the Taj Mahal became aUNESCO World Heritage Site and was cited as “the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the universally admired masterpieces of the world’s heritage.” [2]

 

In this context, we should mention what the India ’s historians have to say in this matter. Historian R C Majumdar, in this regard, writes, “The Taj Mahal, a splendid mausoleum built by Shah Jahan, at a cost of fifty lacs of rupees, over the grave of his beloved wife, Mumtaz Mahal, is rightly regarded as one of the wonders of the world for its beauty and magnificence.” [3] Another historian S K Saraswati writes, “But all the above architectural creations of Shah Jahan are thrown into shade by that superb conception of the mausoleum that the emperor raised up at Agra to enshrine the mortal remains of his beloved consort, Arjumand Banu Begam, better known as Mumtaz Mahal. The Taj Mahal, as it is called after the title of the empress, stands on an elevated ground on a bend of the river Jamuna so that it has a fine view from whatever angle it is seen.” [4]

As a result of this worldwide propaganda, Shahjahan’s authorship of Taj Mahal, mixed with story of romantic love between Shah Jahan and his wife, has become so pervasive that it has become a universal symbol of love between a husband and his wife. Even a common man, at first instance, refuses to admit any other version, even if it is more convincing and rational. Even the Nobel Laureate Poet Rabindranath Tagore, being swayed by the above story, described the Taj Mahal, in one of his poems, as a drop of tears of the grief-stricken Emperor Shahjahan.

The True History of Taj Mahal:

But according to Stephen Knapp, a well known researcher on Taj Mahal, it was not built by Shah Jahan and he writes, “There is ample evidence that the Taj Mahal was never built by Shah Jahan. Some say the Taj Mahal pre-dates Shah Jahan by several centuries and was originally built as a Hindu or Vedic temple/palace complex and Shah Jahan merely acquired it (by brute force) from its previous owner, the Hindu King Jai Singh.” [5] Not only Stephen Knapp but many other researchers like Yogesh Saxena, V S Godbole and Prushottam Nagesh Oak (or P N Oak) hold a similar view and P N Oak is the most prominent and pioneer among scholars who worked to discover the real author of Taj Mahal.

It is well known that Emperor Akbar got Akbarnama, a history of his reign, written by his court-chronicler Abul Fazl and in a similar manner,  Shahjahan had the history of his reign titled Badshahnama written by his court-chronicler Abdul Hamid Lahori. The original Badshahnama was written in Persian using Arabic alphabets and in 1963, P N Oak made a startling discovery the the pages 402 and 403 of the edition of Badshahnama, published by the Asiatic Society of Bengal (see the fascimile of the page 402 and 403 of the edition in Figure-1), contain the true history of the building now known as Taj Mahal. An English translation of the contents from line 21 of page 402 to line 41 on page 403 of Badshahnama is given below.

Meanwhile, we should notice another important point. It is well known that the two British historians, H M Elliot and J Dowson, have done the great job of writing history of India, under Muslim rule, starting from the attack on Sindh by Mohammed bin Kasim in the 8th century to the fall of Marathas in the 19th century, a period, covering nearly 1200 years. It has been written, based on chronicles of the court chroniclers of the Muslim rulers only. The work of Elliot and Dowson’s was published in 8 volumes during 1867 to 1877 and the Volume 7 of their work deals with the reigns of Shahjahan and Aurangzeb. But it is really astonishing that there is not even a mentioning of Taj Mahal in the said work.

Many Muslim chroniclers have described the times of Shah Jahan and Aurangzeb, e.g.

(1) Badshahnama by Abdul Hamid Lahori,

(2) Wakiyat Jahangiri by emperor Jahangir,

(3) Shahjahan-nama by Enayet Khan,

(4) Tarikh-i- Mufajjali by Mufajjal Khan,

(5) Mirat-i-Alam by Bakhtyar Khan,

(6) Alamgirnama by Muhammad Qazim and

(7) Mustakhab-ul-Lubab by Kafi Khan.

But in none of above works, there is even mentioning of Taj Mahal, except Badshahnama by Lahori and that too as a palace of Jai Singh

While commenting on this point, Dr Yogesh Saxena, writes, “The authors should have said, “Though we have presented history of Shahjahan based on his official chronicle Badshahnama, we did not find any reference to Taj Mahal in it.” They did no such thing. And Historians have kept even this information from us for the last 130 years.” [6] It was Professor P N Oak, who, for the first time, made the startling discovery that there is mentioning of the building now called Taj Mahal, but as a palace of the Hindu king Jai Singh, in Badshahnama.

There is another important point to note. There is a well established rumour that Shah Jahan engaged 20,000 labours who toiled for 20 (or 22) years to complete the construction of Taj Mahal, originates by the French traveler Jean Baptiste Tavernier. It is really unthinkable that, Shah Jahan completed such a gigantic job, spending so much money, employing so many people throughout so many years, but it escaped the attention of his sycophant chroniclers, and they did not even say a single word about the said job in their works. So, the logical conclusion is that, the said gigantic construction never took place during the reign of Shah Jahan and Badshahnama confirms this fact.

The original Badshahnama was written in Persian using Arabic alphabets and the pages 402 and 403 of the edition published by the Asiatic Society of Bengal (see the fascimile of the page 402 and 403 of Vol-I of the edition given above) contain the true history of the building now known as Taj Mahal. Professor Oak got the two pages translated into English by a scholar of Persian language and said trnslation of the contents from line 21 of page 402 to line 41 on page 403 of Vol-I of Badshahnama is given below.

“Friday, 15th Jamadiulawal, the sacred dead body of the traveller to the kingdom of holiness Hazrat Mumtazul Zamani, who was temporarily buried, was brought, accompanied by Prince Mohammad Shah, Suja bahadur, Wazir Khan and Satiunnesa Khanam, who knew the pemperament of the deceased intimately and was well versed in view of that Queen of the Queens used to hold, was brought to the capital Akbarabad (Agra) and an order was issued that very day coins be distributed among the beggers and fakirs. The site covered with a majestic garden, to the south of the great city (of Agra) and amidst which the building known as the palace of Raja Man Singh, at present owned by Raja Jai asingh, grandson of Man Singh, was selected for the burial of the Queen, whose abode is in heaven. Although Raja Jai Singh valued it greatly as his ancestral heritage and property, yet he agreed to part with it gratis for Emperor Shahjahan, still out of sheer scrupulousness and religious sanctity, he (Jai Singh) was granted Sharifabad in exchange of that grand palace (Ali Manzil). After the arrival of the deadbody in that great city (of Agra), next year that illustrious body of the Queen was laid to rest and the officials of the capital, according to royal order, hid the body of that pious lady from the eyes of the world and the palace so majestic (imarat-e-alishan) and capped with a dome (wa gumbaje) was turned into a sky-high lofty mausoleum”. [7] 

Many historians try to convince that Shah Jahan purchased a piece of land from Raja Jai Singh and erected Taj Mahal on that land. But the lines 29 and 30 of page 403 of Vol-I of Badshahnama reads, “Pesh az ein Manzil-e-Rajah Mansingh bud wadari waqt ba Rajah Jaisingh (29) Nabirae taalluq dasht barae madfan e an bahisht muwattan bar guzeedand .. (30).” According to experts, the correct translation of the phrase “Manzil-e-Rajah Mansingh bud wadari waqt ba Rajah Jaisingh”is “.. the building known as the palace of Raja Man Singh, at present owned by Raja Jai asingh”. So, it is evident that it cannot be a transaction of land but of a magnificent palace. In line 37, further clarification has been made and said that it was a transaction of an imarat-e-alishan(i.e. a gigantic building) and not of land

In 1964, when Prof P N Oak started to disclose his doubts about Shah Jahan’s authorship of Taj Mahal and presented the document in Badshahnama as the proof, many of his opponents said that his translation ofBadshahnama was not correct. One of his bitter critiques was a Kashmiri Pandit. He was also a scholar of Persian language. To narrate the incident Dr Yogesh Saxena writes, “One of his opponents was a Kashmiri Pandit. Eventually they went to Government of India Archives. At the suggestion of the Librarian there the Pandit started to read Badshahnama, soon he came to Volume I, page 403. One line read – va pesh azin manzil-e-Raja Mansingh bood, vadari vakt ba Raja Jaisingh. He confessed that Shah Jahan took over Raja Mansingh’s palace for burial of Mumtaz. We owe so much to this honest opponent of Mr Oak. He gave word by word translation of pages 402 and 403 to Mr Oak who promptly published it in his book Taj Mahal is a Hindu Palace (1968). However, Mr Oak never stated that the translation was his. It was done for him by a Persian expert.” [6]

The name of the Queen, in whose memory the Taj Mahal is being said to have been erected, was Arjumand Banu. She was married to Shahjahan in 1612 A.D. and within 18 years of her married life she gave birth to 14 childrenand in fact she died in 1630 (or in 1631) while she was delivering her 14th child. According to Badshahnama she was buried temporarily at Burhanpur and in the same year her body was brought from Burhanpur to Agra and the next year her body was permanently buried at the majestic palace of Raja Man Singh.. From the Badshahnama it becomes evident the edifice, now known as Taj Mahal, was not authored by Emperor Shahjahan.

Who was The Author of Building called Taj Mahal:

So, according to the narrations of Badshanama and from other evidence, it becomes clear that the edifice, now known as Taj Mahal, was not authored by emperor Shah Jahan. The question, therefore, naturally arises – Who built that magnificent building?

A locality, nearly 4 km away from Taj Mahal, is called Bateswar and in 1900 A.D., General Alexander Cuningham, the then Director of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), conducted an excavation at Bateswar and discovered an edict, now known as the Munj Bateswar Edict and kept at the Lucknow Museum. The epigraph contains 34 verses written in Sanskrit, out of which 25th, 26th and 34th verses are important in the present context. The original Sankrit text and English translation of the above verses are given below –

Prasādo vaiṣṇavastena nirnimitotavahan hari /

Murdhn āspriśati yo nityaṃ  padamasaiva madhyamam // (25)

“He built a marble temple which is the abode of Lord Vishnu and the King bows down to touch His feet” (25).

Akāryacca sphatikāvadātamasāvidam mandiramindumauleḥ /

Na jātuyasminnibsnsadevah kailāsvasayacakara cetaḥ  //  (26)

“The King has built another marble temple which has been dedicated to the Lord Who has the moon as His ornament on His forehead and Who, getting such a beautiful abode, has forgotten to return to Kailash ” (26).

Pakṣa tryakṣamukhāditya saṃkhye vikramavatsare /

Aśvina śukla pañcmyāṃ  bāsare vāsave śitu //  (34)

“Today, the 5th day of the bright half in the month of Ashwin, the Sunday, in the year 1212 of the Vikram Samvat, the edict is being laid” (34).

Mr. D. J. Kale, a well known archaeologist, has mentioned the said Munj Bateswar Edict in his celebrated work Epigraphica India. On page 124 of the said work, Mr. Kale writes, “The sais Munj Bateswar Edict was laid by King Paramardidev of the Chandratreya dynasty on Sukla Panchami in the month of Ashwin, in the year 1212 Vikram Samvat (or A.D. 1156).  …  King Paramardidev built two magnificent temples with white marble , one for Lords Vishnu and the other for Lord Shiva and they were desecrated later on by the Muslim invaders. Perhaps a farsighted man took the edict to a safer place at Bateswar and buries it beneath the ground”.[8]Perhaps, after the said desecration, the temples were no longer used as religious places and due to this reason Abdul Hamid Lahori mentioned them as palaces, not as temples. According to the renowned historian Mr. R. C. Majumdar, the other name of the Chandratreya or Chandel King Paramardidev was Paramal and their kingdom was known as Bundelkhand, a.k.a.Jejakabhukti [9]

Today, there are two marble palaces in Agra, one is the Mausoleum of Idmat-ud-Daula, the father of Noorjahan and the other is Taj Mahal, and it is evident from the Munj Bateswar edict that, once upon a time, one of them was the temple of Lord Vishnu and the other was a temple of Lord Shiva. Experts believe that it is the temple of Lord Vishnu that has been made the mausoleum of Idmat-ud-Daula, and the temple of Lord Shiva has been converted into the mausoleum of the queen Arjumand Banu. There are so many evidence that support of this conclusion and we shall try to discuss them in future installments of this article.

 

(To be continued)

 

 

 

References:

 

[1] http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/581007/Taj-Mahal

[2] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taj_Mahal)

[3] R. C. Majumdar, H. C. Raychaudhury and K. Datta,  An Advanced History of India, MacMillan & Co (1980),586..

[4] R. C. Majumdar (Gen Ed), History & Culture of the Indian People (in 12 Volumes), Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Mumbai (1996), VII, 793.

  

 [5] Stephen Knapp,Taj Mahal: Was it a Vedic Temple ? The Photographic Evidence ( http://www.stephen-knapp.com/was_the_taj_mahal_a_vedic_temple.htm )

[6] Yogesh Saxena Taj Mahal – It is time to tell the truth, (http://agrasen.blogspot.com/2009/04/hidden- facts-in-indian-history.html )

  

[7] P N Oak, Tajmahal – The True Story, Published by A Ghosh, p 9-12.

  

[8] D J Kale, Epigraphica India , published by S D Kale & M D Kale, I, 270-274.

  

[9] R C Majumdar, ibid, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Vol-5, p-122

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July 25, 2009

Distortions of Indian history – Part 6

Original Source: Article by  Dr Radhasyam Brahmachari, the great historian who has done extensive research on Indian History.  Excerpts and additions to original source follow:

Akbar, The Great (?) Monarch:

It is really amazing and ridiculous that, not only the so called pseudo secular and the Marxist historians of India , but also the Western historians portray the Mughal emperor Akbar as a great monarch. But are there sufficient grounds to project him as a great man? The Indian historians, according to the guideline set by the ongoing politics of Muslim appeasement, have to glorify each and every Muslim ruler including Akbar as a compulsion. But it is really incomprehensible why the historians of the West are also in the race in glorifying Akbar, who, in reality, was a foreign invader and came to India to plunder this country.  Akbar  possessed three qualities – treachery, lechery and butchery. In several occasions, Akbar played vile treachery with the Hindu kings. Akbar was a cruel killer, who butchered innocent Hindus in millions. As a lecher, Akbar maintained a harem of 5000 women, most of whom were abducted Hindu housewives. So it is necessary to make a fresh estimate of Akbar to asses his greatness.Akbar, widely considered the greatest of the Mughal emperors, was only 14 when he ascended the throne in Delhi, by defeating the Hindu king Samrat Hem Raj Vikramaditya, also called Himu at the Second Battle of Panipat. He was descended from Turks, Mongols, and Iranians — the three peoples who predominated in the political elites of northern India in medieval times. He consolidated his power, during first two decades of his reign and bring parts of northern and central India into his realm. He also reduced external military threats from the Pashtun (Afghan), the descendants of Sher Shah, by waging wars against Afghan. He also solidified his rule in India by pursuing diplomacy with the powerful Rajput rulers of northern part of the country, and by admitting Rajput princesses in his harem. [1] Akbar was raised by his uncle Askari and his wife in the eastern country of Persia and Afghanistan.He spent his youth learning to hunt, run, and fight, but he never learned to read and write. The so called pseudo-secular and Marxist historians paint Akbar as a generous, kind hearted tolerant king free from religious bigotry, and a genius with refined tastes in the arts, architecture, music and literature. But it is to be seen, how far their portrayal is true.

In this article, we will look into Akbar’s encounter with Samrat Hem Raj Vikramaditya.

 

Picture of Samrat Hem Raj Vikramaditya

Picture of Samrat Hem Raj Vikramaditya

It has been mentioned earlier that Sher Shah Suri ascended the throne of Delhi on May 17, 1540, by defeating Humayun in a battle near Kannauj and he died in an accident in 1545 AD, in Kalinjar. After his death, anarchy appeared again. The nobles made Jalal Khan, the second son of Sher Shah, the Sultan of Delhi , depriving the eldest Adil Khan as the latter was incompetent, lazy, and ease-loving. After ascending the throne, Jalal Khan assumed the title of Islam Shah. Soon after, a group of nobles made a conspiracy to murder Islam Shah and put Adil Khan on the throne. But the plan divulged and Islam Shah put all the conspirators to the sword.

Chaos after the Death of Sher Shah:

 

On November 22, 1554, Islam Shah, after ruling for 9 years and 6 months, died and his nobles put his minor son Firuz on to the throne. But after a few months, Mubariz Khan, a cousin of Firuz, murdered him and ascended the throne assuming the new name of Muhammad Adil Shah. But he was unsuitable as a ruler. On the other hand, the news of Islam Shah’s death inspired Humayun to invade India and recover his lost territory. At this juncture, Bairam Khan came to Humayun’s help that enhanced his strength considerably and enabled him to re-conquer Kabul, News of these developments made Adil Shah very shaky and he gave up all the responsibilities to his most trusted employee Himu, a Hindu officer, and this incident facilitated Himu to raise himself as the most important man in North Indian politics.

This was the time when the star of Himu’s fortune shone brightest- Adil Shah appointed him the Wzir (Prime Minister) and the incident initiated his rapid rise. But most of the Muslim historians did not like an infidel to hold the highest post in the court of a Muslim king and hence they tried to blacken his character it at every opportunity.

Who this Himu was ? Historian R. C, Majumdar, in this regard, writes, “Himu was born in a poor family of Dhansar section of the Baniya caste, living in a town in the southern part of Alwar”.[2]  Muslim historian Badayuni has described him as a resident of a small town called Rewari in the taluk of Mewat, and according to him, Himu began his life as a green vendor.[2] Others believe that Himu was a hawker in the town of Mewat.[2]However, at a certain stage, he succeeded to draw the attention of Adil Shah, who appointed him the Superintendent of the Delhi market. But by dint of his sincerity and sense of responsibility, he became a favourite of Adil, who started to elevate him to more and more responsible posts. When Adil Shah died, Himu was the Chief of the Intelligence Department and, at the same time, the Head of the Postal Department (Daroga-i-Dak Chowki).

To introduce Himu, the Muslim historian Ahmmad Yadgar, in his Tarikh-I-Salatin-i-Afghana, writes,“There was a man named Himu, who was a weighman in the bazar, who found means to approach the King on different affairs, and in whom he daily reposed more and more confidence. By degrees he became very powerful and influential, so that he managed the business of the State”. [3]

At that time, Junaid Khan, the governor of Bayana, and his son, the phaujdar of Ajmir  rebelled. Adil Shah sent Jamal Khan against him with a large force. But in a severe battle at Kanulapur, Junaid became victorious. The incident made Adil Shah very depressed. Then Himu said, “O Lord of the World, if you will trust me with a small force, I will either overcome Junaid Khan, or perish in the attempt”. [4] The King yielded to his solicitations and sent Himu with 3000 or 4000 horsemen and four war-elephants. Junaid deputed his assistant Daulat Khan to defend Himu. A battle was fought and Daulat Khan was defeated and slain.

Then Junaid himself advanced with 8000 strong cavalry to confront Himu, while Himu had only 3000 horses. So he decided to attack the enemy in the darkness of night and Ahremad Yadgar, in his Tarikh-i-Salatin-i-Afghana, writes, “The enemy remained on the alert during the three watches of the night; but in the last watch they grew negligent and fell asleep, The soldiers of Adil Shah fell furiously on them on all sides. Himu did not give the time to put enemy their armour and the Afghans, sword in hand, passed through their enemy slaughtering all they met.”[5] Himu then went to the court of Adil Shah and Yadgar writes, “He (Himu) then stood with folded hands in front of the throne. Adil Shah honoured him with a purple khilat (garment), the coller and the skirt of which were covered with jewels”.[6]

At that time, Ibrahim Khan, a cousin of Adil Shah and the governor of Agra , rebelled. Adil Shah sent a detachment against him, but Ibrahim routed them. Then Ibrahim marched towards Delhi and ultimately occupied the city. Inspired by the success of Ibrahim, Ahmmad Khan Sur, the governor of Lahore and brother-in-law of Adil, assumed the name Sikandar Shah and rebelled. In the east, Muhammad Khan Sur, the governor of Bengal revolted and assumed the title of Shamsuddin Muhammad Ghazi. So the empire of Sher Shah Suri got divided into four parts, Delhi and Agra went to Ibrahim Khan, Punjab went to Sikandar Shah, Bengal to Shamsuddin Muhammad and the remaining part under the control of Adil Shah.

Meanwhile, in 1555, Sikandar Shah invaded Delhi , in a severe battle he defeated Ibrahim and thus Delhi went under the control of Sikandar. On the other hand, the rivalry among the Afghans provided a great opportunity for the Mughals to recover their lost empire. In November 1554, Humayun left Kabul , advanced towards Lahore , and in February 1555, gained control over the city almcst without any resistance. Then Sikandar Shah marched against Humayun with a 30,000 strong cavalry. A severe battle took place at Machhiara near Ludhiana and Sikandar Shah suffered a complete defeat. Sikandar then marched again against Humayun with 80,000 horsemen, but he was again defeated in a battle near Sirhind and fled to Sivallk Hills.

 

Ascendency of Himu:

In that hour of crises, Adil Shah Appointed Himu the Wazir, or the Prime Minister of his court and handed over civil, military, finance and, in fact, every other responsibility to him. It is really surprising that Adil Shah, a Muslim king, selected a Hindu kafir for the highest position of his government, and there is no doubt that had Adil could find Muslim candidate suitable for the post, he would certainly not have selected an infidel like Himu for the post. The incident shows that the competency of Himu, for the post, was beyond any dispute.

After assuming the new responsibility, Himu at once marched against Ibrahim and defeated him twice, first at Kalpi and then at Khanwa. To narrate Himu’s victory, Nizamuddin Ahmroad in his Tabakat-i-Akbari, writes,“Adil now sent, the bakkal, who was the Wazir, with a large force, and with 500 war-elephants and artillery, against Agra and Delhi . When Himu reached Kalpi, he resolved to dispose of Ibrahim first and hastened to meet him. A great battle followed, in which Himu was victorious, and Ibrahim fled to his father at Bayana, Himun followed and Invested Bayana, which he besieged for three months”.[7] Himu then marched against Muhammad Shah and a battle was fought at Chhapparghatta , a place 20 miles away from Kalpi. Muhammad Shah was defeated and Himu gained control over Bengal.[8]

 

Following the chaos over the succession of Islam Shah (Sher Khan Suri’s son), as mentioned above,Humayun reconquered Delhi in 1555, with the help of an army partly provided by his Persian ally Shah Tahmasp.But a few months later, on January 26, 1556, Humayun died and Bairam Khan, the guardian of Akbar, cleverly concealed the report of Humayun’s death in order to prepare for Akbar’s accession to the throne. On February 24, 1556, Akabar, a 13 year-old boy, was proclaimed Shahanshah (Persian for “King of Kings”) of Hindustan . by Bairam Khan at Kalanaur (GurdaspurPunjab).

 

At that time, Himu sought permission of Adil to attack Delhi . Ahmmad Yadgar narrates, “Himun went in front of the throne and said, “O King, the case is this; he (Akbar) is now a child of ten years old, who has lost his father, and the Mughal army is not yet firmly established. It is easy to root up a small plant”. Adil Shah derived confidence from his speech and prepared a powerful force. He sent 7000 horsemen and 20 war-elephants with Himun, who went march by march to Gwalior”.[9] From Gwallor, Himu advanced towards Agra and Adil Shah, on the other hand, went to the safe place at the fort of Chunar.

 

As Himu got closer to Agra , frightened Iskandar Khan, the Mughal governor of the city, fled to Delhi . So Himu occupied Agra practically without resistance and then the victorious Wazir marched towards Delhi . Alikuli Khan, the Mughal governor of Delhi , also prepared a strong force to confront Himu and a fierce battle followed. Ahmmad Yadgar, to narrate the incident, writes, “When Himu saw that the Mughals were in good spirit and the Afghans disheartened, he advanced with his own division and routed them. They (Mughals) were unable to rally, and as they were utterly defeated, they took to flight. Himu pursued them and slaughtered many, … So much plunder of Mughal army fell into Himun’s hands that it was impossible to take an account of it -160 elephants, l000 horses of Arab breed and an immense quantity of property and valuables”. [10]

 

Then victorious Himu entered Delhi and Nizamuddin Ahmmad, in his Tarikh -i-Akbari , writes,”Himun had greatly vaunted his achievements at Delhi and had taken to himself the title of Raja Bikrsmjit”.[11] To narrate the same victory, Ahmmad Yadgar, in his Tarikh-i-Salatin-i-Afghana, writes, “Himun rejoiced this victory, sent an account of his success, together with the Spoils captured from the Mughals, to Adll Shah, who was exceedingly pleased when he received it,…He (Adil Shah) gave a great festival and sent Himun a dress of honour, adorned with jewels and worked with gold threads”[12] Ahmmad Yadgar continues to write,” … he (Himu) entered Delhi, raised the Imperial Canopy over him and ordered coins to be struck in his name. He appointed a governor (of Delhi) of his own and brought the Delhi territory and the neighbouring parganas under his control and in order to console the King, he sent an account of the victory in these words,”Your slave, by the royal fortune, has routed the Mughal army, … but I hear that Humayun’s son commands a numerous force and advancing against Delhi”.[13]

 

Himu’s Misfortune:

 

The news of defeat of the Mughal governor of Delhi and the skill and braveiy of Himu reached the Mughal prince Akber in time. Nearly 10 months later, Akbar, with a great force of 26,000 horsemen under the command of Bairam Khan marched towards Delhi . So Ahmmad Yadgar, in his Tarikh-i-Salatin-i-Afghana,writes, “He (Akbar) marched without halting, with Bairam Khan. …When they reached Thanesar, a census was taken of the army, which was found to consist of 26,000 horsemen”. [14] And to describe Himu’s army, Nizamuddin Ahmmad in his Tarikh-i-Akbari, writes, “He (Himu) had gathered under his command a mighty force and had 1600 war-elephants. With those, he hastened to meet the Imperial (Mughal) army”. [15]

 

The battle began in the morning on 5th November, 1556, at Panipat and to describe the same, Nizamuddim Ahmmad writes, “Himun then advanced with his elephants, and made such a determined charge on the Imperial army that the left wing was shaken…. Himu then drew off his forces, and made an assault upon the centre, which was under the command of Khan-Zaman. He led all his elephants against the Khan’s men, who received him with shower of Arrows. An arrow pierced the eye of Hemun, and came out at the back of his head. When those who were fighting under him saw his condition, their hands were paralyzed, and they broke. The Imperial forces pursued them, and cut many of then, to pieces.” [16] According to Abul Fazl, Himu had divided his army into three divisions and he himself was leading the central division with 500 elephants and 20,000 Afghan and Rajput horsemen. [17] So, many believe, when Himu was on the verge of winning the this battle, the accident occured, leading to his defeat.

 

Ahmad Yadgar had tried to invent a reason for Himu’s defeat, which is extremely incredible. He writes,“The evening preceding the day on which he (Himu) expected the battle, he went to the sanctified mausoleum Kutub-ul-Aktab of His Highness Kutb-ul-Hakk, (the pole-star of religion of Islam), ……and placing the head of entreaty on the august threshold, vowed that, if he were destined to conquer Delhi, if the throne of Delhi were granted to him, he would become a Musulman on his return to Delhi, and diffuse the religion of Muhammad”[18] Yadgar continues, “The Almighty (Allah) gave them (Mughals) victory. But he (Himu) perjured himself, and did not become a Musulman, or forsake his heathen prejudices; nay, he even persecuted the Musulmans. But at last he saw, what he did see”. [18]

Yadgar also writes that, on the previous night, Himu became extremely disheartened after a dream of bad omen. He writes, ”.. he (Himu) beheld in a dream, a torrent come down and carry away the elephant on which he was mounted. When he was nearly drowned, a Mughal came and cast a chain round his neck, and drew him out”. On the next day, an interpreter said, “The torrent which you saw is the Mughal army,..and the chain signifies; the blood which will flow from your body when you are wounded.” [18] This made Himu much frightened, but he said, “The very reverse of the dream will happen”. [18]

But, in fact, it was Akbar who got frightened by observing the valour of Himu and his mighty force, and Bairam Khan, to inspire him, said, “This is the commencement of His Majesty’s reign. This infidel has routed the whole Mughal army, and is now making preparations against us. If you do your best in this business, with one heart and soul, Hindustan is yours. I place my trust in Allah. If we fail in this, you, whose homes are at a distance of 500 kos (1000 miles), will not be able to find an sylum”. [19]

 

However, the military skill and bravery that Himu displayed in the battle field on November 5, could not have been ignored by even the Muslim historians. So Ahmmad Yadgar writes, “Himu, having made himself ready for action came out into the plain, and seated himself in a howda on an elephant in order the that he might be able to overlook and superintend his troops, …. Bairan Khan also drew up the people of Chaghatai to the right and left in battle array,.. Bairam Khan placed Akbar Mirza’s own private tent in an elevated position, and left 3000 horse to guard him, … Himu was excessively arrogant on account of his troops and elephants. He advanced, fought, and routed the Mughals, whose heads lay in heaps, and whose blood flowed in streams. He thus at first vanquished the Mughals……” [20]

 

But fortune was not with Himu and his victory turned into a defeat due to an accident and Ahmmad Yadgar writes, “… by the decree of the Almighty, an arrow struck Himu in the forehead. He told his elephant driver to take the elephant out of the field of battle, then the Afghans saw that the animal was retreating, they believed that Himun was flying. … as no benefit is ever derived from disloyalty, he Sustained a complete defeat”. [20]

 

To narrate the same incident, Vincent Smith writes, “On November 5, Himu succeeded in throwing both the right and the left wings of his opponents into confusion, and sought to make his victory decisive by bringing all his mountain-like elephants to bear on the centre of the enemy, commanded by Khan Zaman. Probably he would have won but for the accident that he was struck in the eye by an arrow which pierced his brain and rendered him unconscious” [21]

 

Akbar’s Display of Greatness:

After the battle was ended, in accordance with the ghastly custom of the times, a tower was built with the heads of the slain. This “tower of heads” tradition and ceremony was religiously observed by the “magnanimous” Akbar, like his ancestors.

According to Yadgar, Alikuli Khan could trace the elephant of Himu in the forest, brought it back and placed Himu before Bairam Khan, and writes, “Bairam Khan … caused Himu to descend from the elephant, after which he bound his hands, and took him before the young and fortunate Prince, and said, “As this is our first success, let your Highness’s own august hand smite this infidel with the sword”. The Prince, accordingly, struck him, and divided his head from his unclean body”. [22]

 

Nizamuddin Ahmmad, to describe the incident, writes, “Shah Kuli Khan,… drove the elephant , along with several others which had been captured in the field, to the presence of the Emperor. Bairam Khan Khan Kanan then put Himu to death with his own hand.” [23] So, according to Nizamuddln Ahmmad, Bairam Khan executed himu with his own hand. And similar was the view maintained by Badayuni, Abul Fazl and Faizi. So, Badayuni writes, “Bairam Khan said, “This is your first war (ghazd), prove your sword on this infidel, for it will be a meritorious deed”, Akbar replied, “He is now no better than a dead man, how can I strike him? If he had sense and strength, I would try my sword”. Then, in the presence of them all, the Khan, the warrior of the faith, cut him down with his sword. Himun’s head was sent to Kabul, and his body to Delhi, to be exposed over the gates”.[23]

 

But according to Vincent Smith, Akbar himself struck Himu with his sword to earn the title of Ghazi , and writes, “Bairam Khan desired Akbar to earm the title of Ghazi, or slayer of the infidel, by fleshing his sword on the captive. The boy naturally obeyed his guardian and smote Hemu on the neck with his scimitar. The bystanders also plunged their swords into the bleeding corpse. Hemu’s head was sent to Kabul to be exposed, and his trunk gibbeted at one of the gates of Delhi “. [24]

He also writes, “Akbar, a boy of fourteen cannot be justly blamed for complying with the instructions of Bairam Khan. … The official story, that a magnanimous sentiment of unwillingness to strike a helpless priso ner already half dead compelled him (Akbar) to refuse to obey his guardian’s instructions, seems to be the late invention of courtly flatterers, and is opposed to the clear statement of Ahmed Yadgar and the Dutch writer, van der Broecke, as well as to the probabilities of the case”. [24] That was the pathetic end of the saga of a great son of Mother India, who tried his best to restore independence of this ancient country, our beloved motherland, by defeating the Muslim invaders and occupiers, but did not succeed only due to a mere accident. Furthermore, it is a matter of great regret that the people of this country have forgotten that great Hindu hero and the fascinating story of his life, achievements and sacrifice.

Akbar’s Subsequent Display of Greatness:

But the tale of Himu did not end with his death. Intelligence came to Akbar that Himu’s father, his widow and other members of his family were living in Alwar, with their properties and wealth, and, on the pretext of a possible revolt by Haji Khan, the governor of Alwar, he sent a detachment to Alwar, under the command of Nasir-ul-mulk, a.k.a, Pir Muhammad. The Mughal has brought the Mewat region under the rule of Delhi and Pir Muhammad executed Himu’s father. To narrate the incident, Abul Fazl, in his Akbamama, writes, “Himu’s father was taken alive, and brought before Nasir-ul-mulk, who tried to convert him to the faith (of Islam); but the old man said, “For eighty years, I have worshipped God in way of my own religion; how can I forsake my faith? Shall I, through fear of death, embrace your religion without understanding it?” Maulana Pir Muhammad treated his question as unheard, but gave an answer with the tongue of the sword”. [25] Immense treasures were taken with the family of Hemu whose aged father was executed.” This “tower of heads” tradition and ceremony was religuously preserved by the “magnanimous” Akbar.

Historian R. C, Majumdar, while offering his respect to Himu, writes, “Such was the noble end of the family of a great Hindu who was born in a humble life, but made his way to the throne of Delhi by dint of sheer ability and military skill – a unique episode in the history of India during the Muslim rule” [26]

Almost all the Muslim chroniclers have tried to paint Himu a traitor and disloyal, because he ascended the throne of Delhi , instead of offering the same to his master Adil Shah. But, in this context, R. C. Majumdar writes“No one today can reasonably claim to know the thoughts in Himu’s mind. But a little reflection will show that there was nothing unreasonable or immoral in the aspiration of Himu. No doubt, personal ambition played a great part, but it may not be altogether wrong to think that he was also inspired by the idea of founding a Hindu Raj. This is supported by his assumption to the title of Vikramaditya”. [27] And, perhaps, most shameful as well as most deplorable is the role of the so called secular and the Marxist historians, the most despicable group of people of independent India who, like the Muslim historians, are continuing their efforts to blacken Himu’s character by portraying him a betrayer to his Muslim Master.

So, the historian R. C. Majumdar, in this context, writes, “Unfortunately, Himu’s history has been written almost wholly by his enemies who dreaded him most, and, far from doing justice to his greatness, they have tarnished his name with unmerited odium. It is time to resuscitate the memory and give a true account of the life of Hemchandra, a really great hero, whose dreams and achievements have been forgotten by his countrymen”.[26]

So, it is really unfortunate that our so called secular historians, following their sinister political guideline of Muslim appeasement, are glorifying the foreign Muslim invaders, including Akbar, by concealing their demonic activities, while projecting a real patriotic fighter, like Himu, as a villain. These people, guided by the said policy of Muslim appeasement and motivated by allurement, are going on writing distorted history of this country and thus depriving the people and their posterity from getting acquainted with their real history.

 

The Muslim rulers who massacred hundreds of thousands of innocent Hindus within a single day in umpteen occasions, these historians are projecting those killers as honest and benevolent rulers. Those blood-thirsty Muslim rulers who, by coercion and torture, converted hundreds of millions of Hindus to Islam at the point of sword, these despicable sub-humans called secular historians are portraying those Muslim despots as noble hearted magnanimous kings. The foreign Muslim invaders who demolished hundreds of thousands of Hindu temples or converted them into mosques, these historians are describing them as generous people liberal in the matter of religion. The abominable and lecherous Muslim invaders, who carried hundreds of thousands of Hindu women and children as captives to the Middle East to be sold as slaves, these wicked historians are painting them as kind and soft-hearted rulers. Those foreign Muslim invaders, who forcibly occupied the forts and palaces of Hindu kings and did not lay a single brick, these historians are highlighting them as great admirers of architecture or great architects, and we fools are cramming those narrations years after years,without assessing the realities of those narrations.

But we, the citizens of free India , have every right to know their true history. They have every right to know, who this Himu was and what were his achievements. We have the right to know the spectacular life of this great son of India , a great patriot who sacrificed his life to defend the foreign occupier Akbar. And, had not by an accident, an arrow pierced Himu’s eye and rendered him unconscious on November 5, 1556, the day on which the Second Battle of Panipat was fought, the people of India would have a different history to read- the chapter of Mughal Dynasty would have been replaced by the Hindu Dynasty of Vikramaditya Heraraj. And at same the time, the hour has arrived to decide who was really Great, Akbar or the Emperor Vikramaditya Hemraj, who now being slighted as Himu.

References:

[1] http://www.culturalindia.net/indian-history/akbar.html,http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tomb_of_Akbar_the_Great , http://www.boloji.com/history/011.htm

[2] R. C, Majumdar, The History and Cultures of the Indian People, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan (in 12 Vols) , VII ,97
[3] H. M.Elliot and J, Dowson, History of India ; As Told by Its Own Historians, Low Price Publications , Delhi , (in 8 Vols) , V, 48,
[4] H. M. Ellict and J. Dowson, ibid, V, 48.
[5] H. M, Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V, 50.
[6] H. M. Hllict and J. Dowson , ibid, V, 51.
[7] H. M. Elliot and J, Dowson, ibid, V, 244
[8] H. M., Elliot and J- Dcwson, ibid, V, 490.
[9] H. M. Elliot and J, Dowson, ibid, V, 59.
[10] H. M. Elliot and J, Dowson, ibid, V, 61
[11] H. M, Elliot and J. Dowson , ibid, V, 252.
[12] H. M- Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V, 60,
[13] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V,61-62,
[14] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V,62,
[15] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V, 252.
[16] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson , ibid, V, 252.
[17] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V, 252-53.
[18] H. M, Elliot and J. Dcwson, ibid, V, 63.
[19] H. M, Elliot and J, Dowscn, ibid, V, 64.
[20] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V, 65.
[21] V. A. Smith, Akbar the Great Mogul, Oxford Clarendon Press, 38.
[22] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V, 66.
[23] H. m. Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, V, 253.
[24] V. A. Smith, ibid, 39.
[25] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, ibid, VI, 21.
[26] R.C. Majumdar, ibid, Bharatiya Vidya Bnavan , VII ,100.
[27] R. C. Majumdar, ibid, Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, VII, 101.

Note:- 1st PU History book mentions two lines of Hemu, while devotes 10 pages to Akbar.

Also read the Part 1  , Part 2 , Part 3 , Part 4 and Part 5 of this series. Next article is here:- Part 7.

July 24, 2009

Distortion of Indian history – Part 5

Who built the Grand Trunk Road in India, running from West Bengal in India to Peshawar in Pakistan?

GrandTrunkRoad

If this was a question in general knowledge quiz in India, Sher Shah Khan Suri , the Mughal ruler would come to be answer from anyone who has mugged up the history textbooks.

What is the fact behind this? Who was Sher Shah Khan Suri? How did he rise in power during Mughal encroachments? 

A very interesting description of this all is found in this article by Dr Radhasyam Brahmachari, a renowned Indian Historian.

Sherkhan is often credited for the Grand Trunk Road, along with the water, shelter and trees plantation along the road. However, to quote Dr. Radhasyam Brahmachari, who has done an extensive research on history records and current texts, Sherkhan could hardly have built this HUGE road ranging 6240km, Read on (Original, complete article is here):-

~~~~~~~~~~~~~

“It has been mentioned above that the history books also tell that Sher Shah ascended the throne of Delhi on May 17, 1540, by defeating Humayun in a battle near Kannauj and in the same year organised a military campaign to suppress the revolt of the Gakkars in Punjab . He moved east, the next year, to suppress a similar revolt in Bengal in March, 1541 AD. The next year, he moved against the Rajput kings in central India and conquered Malwa. The very next year (i.e. in 1543 AD), he organised a campaign against the Hindu king Puran Mal and took control of the fort at Raisin and then moved against the Rajput king of Marwar. In 1544 he subdued the Rathore king, Maldev and in the subsequent year, he died in an accident in 1545 AD, in Kalinjar.

So, the rule of Sher Shah lasted only for five years and out of these five years, he spent nearly one year to gain control over the fort of Kalinjore.[6] During the rest of his reign, he was on hectic movement from east to west and north to south for suppressing revolts or conquering new forts. It should be mentioned here that the period under consideration was a period of political chaos and lawlessness and to restore order, Sher Shah had to fight many battles and that too with partial success. Thus the question naturally arises-Was it possible for Sher Shah (or any other ruler of that time) to build such long roads within such a short span of time? Furthermore, is it possible to make roads, nearly 6,240 Km long, today using modern technology, within a period of 4 or 5 years? The real story is that, Abbas Khana court-chronicler of Sher Shah had written some lies to please and glorify his master and our historians took those narrations at their face value, without applying their common sense to estimate the credibility of those blatant lies.

A close scrutiny of events, during the time of Sher Shah, also reveals that, despite his vast efforts, he did not succeed in bringing the vast stretch of land, from Dhaka in Bengal and River Indus in Punjab , under his control. So, how could Sher Shah carry out such a gigantic project like making a road from Bengal to Punjab , when the territory in question was not under his supreme control? 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From this discussion, it is clear that Sher Shah is mis-credited for road construction north India, by historians who un-necessarily want to glorify the period of Mughal rulership in India. 

As for the original question of who built the GT Road, well, Dr. Radhasyam Brahmachari rightly suggested that the trade and many war affairs between Indian Kings that have centuries of history much before the Mughal invasions, could not have been possible without the good network of roads, wide enough to carry chariots, elephants and armies used for the combats. Mughal only used the existing network and some of them renamed it or took credit for building them, as per their chroniclers. The current generation of historians need to become aware of the true history facts and revise their knowledge.

In fact the road seems to have a very old usage, and was called Uttarapatha meaning Northern Way, as mentioned here.

Today, the Grand Trunk Road remains a continuum that covers a distance of over 2,500 km. From its origin at Sonargaon in theNarayanganj District of central Bangladesh, it reaches India, passing  through Kolkata, Bardhaman, Durgapur, Asansol, Dhanbad, Aurangabad, Varanasi, Allahabad, Kanpur, Aligarh, Delhi, Karnal, Ambala, Ludhiana,Jalandhar, Amritsar. Within India, the major portion of the road – the stretch between Kanpur and Kolkata – is known as NH 2 (National Highway – 2), the stretch between Kanpur and Delhi is called NH-91 (National Highway – 91), and that between Delhi and Wagah, at the border with Pakistan, is known as NH-1. From the Pakistan border the Grand Trunk Road (part of the N-5) continues north through Lahore via Gujranwala, Gujrat, Jhelum, Rawalpindi, Attock District and Nowshera before it finally reaches Peshawar. (Route source from Wikipedia.)

Also read the Part 1  , Part 2 , Part 3 , and Part 4 of this series. Next article is here:- Part 6.

July 23, 2009

Aurangzeb as per Mughal records

Source: http://www.aurangzeb.info/

Aurangzeb as per Mughal records is a fantastic exhibition that was being shown in many parts of the country, New Delhi, Bangalore and Pune. Video of its inauguration in Bangalore is here. It contains factual history of Aurangzeb as per Mughal records, in form of paintings. When it went to Chennai, the local Muslim groups protested against it being open to exhibition. The Police took quick action of vandalism, destroyed the paintings and arrested women who conducted the exhibit. Isn’t it a barbaric action on the freedom of expression? Is history a toy in hands of rulers to modify, censor it? History has to be presented as it is, the meaning of the word Itihas in Samskrit for the History is “This is how it happened”. The exhibit is set of paintings based on Aurangzeb’s own court cronicles. What objection can you have for such an authentic source of information? If there is objection, it needs to be filed as a court suit and not destroyed forcefully.

The exhibit is available for view online, at this website. The exhibition is put up by FACT India, Foundation Against Continuing Terrorism. FACT India has filed an online petition for compensation for damage and apology.

Some snapshots:-

SomnathDemolition

Demolition of Somnath Temple

Shivaji Maharaj walking away in court of Aurangzeb

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj walking away in court of Aurangzeb

July 18, 2009

Distortion of Indian history – Part 3

Qutb Minar      Qutb Minar

 

Dr Radhasyam Brahmachari

Distorted History of Qutb Minar:

The Qutb Minar (also spelled Qutab or Qutub), a tower in Delhi, India, is the world’s tallest minaret, made of red sandstone. It is 72.5 metres (238 ft) tall with 379 steps leading to the top. The diameter of the base is 14.3 meters wide while the top floor measures 2.75 meters in diameter. The authorship of this magnificent piece of architecture is attributed to the Muslim invader Qutb-ud-din Aibok and the Indian as well as the Western historians write, “Inspired by the Minaret of Jam in Afghanistan and wishing to surpass it, Qutb-ud-din Aibak, the first Muslim ruler of Delhi, commenced construction of the Qutb Minar in 1193, but could only complete its base. His successor, Iltutmish, added three more stories and, in 1386, Firuz Shah Tughluq constructed the fifth and the last story.

According to another version, Qutb-ud-din Aibak came to India in 1193 AD, as the ruler of Delhi and laid the foundation of the Qutb Minar in 1206 AD. Before his death in 1210 AD, he could complete the construction of only the first storey of the monument. Later on his son in law Iltutmish (or Altamash) took up the job and added three more stories, and the topmost storey of the minaret was completed in 1386 by Firuz Shah Tughluq. But, after going through all these narrations, following suspicions crops up in an inquisitive mind. 

Firstly, all the barbaric Muslims invaders, like Muhammaf Ghori, Qutb-ud-din Aibak, Firuz Shah Tughluq and their lot, came to India to plunder its wealth and not to erect a minaret, like the Qutb Minar, by spending money. Though the so called secular historians are projecting these barbaric invaders as great builders and great admirers of art, sculpture and architecture, it becomes hard to believe that those cruel killers and lecherous vandals had any affinity for art and culture.

Real History Minaret, Now called Qutb Minar:

Qutb Minar

According to Hindu records, the place now known as the Qutb Complex, which has now been declared a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO, was a seat of learning or a university, where students used to come from far away places to learn and do research on mathematics, astronomy and astrology. There were several residential buildings for the students and the teachers and 27 temples dedicated to 27 asterisms. In Indian astronomy there was a practice of dividing the ecliptic into 27 equal parts with the help of these 27 asterisms and each part covering 13 degrees and 20 minutes of the ecliptic (the practice is still being used today by Indian astrologers).

The pillar or the minaret, now called Qutb Minar, was used by the researchers as the astronomical observation tower and at that time, it was known as Meru (pole) Stambha (pillar). According to another group of scholars, the other name of this pillar was Vishnu Dhwaj (Banner of Lord Vishnu) and the scholars agree that it was authored by the great astronomer Varaha Mihira. Confusion may arise in the reader’s mind – How such a tall pillar did serve the purpose of an astronomical observatory? So, it needs some explanation. Suppose one wants to know the exact altitude of the sun in the sky. He has to measure the length of the shadow of the pillar and dividing it by the height of the pillar, one obtains the tangent of the altitude of the sun. One should notice that, taller the pillar, more accurate would be the results of his measurements.

The reader should notice that this could be done for any heavenly body. In that case, the observer is to move away from the pillar until the tip of the pillar and heavenly body is on a straight line. One should also notice that by measuring the length of the shadow of pillar under midday sun, it is possible to ascertain into which Zodiacal Sign the sun happens to be and thus to ascertain the beginning of a solar month which coincides, according to Hindu system, with the entry of the sun into a new Zodiacal Sign. It has been pointed out above that accuracy of such measurements would increase with the height of the pillar. The reader should also notice that by measuring the length of the shadow, the other parameters of the annual motion of the sun, like ascertaining the days of summer and winter solstice, and vernal and autumnal equinoxes, could also be accurately done.

For example, on 22nd June, or the day of Summer Solstice, when the sun rests on the Tropic of Cancer, it will be inclined by 5.0 degrees to the south in Delhi, as the latitude of Delhi is 28.5 degrees North and that of the Tropic of Cancer is 23.5 degrees North. So, on that day, the length of the shadow of the Qutb Minar at midday would be 19.7 ft. While on 22nd December, or on the day of Winter Solstice, the sun will be inclined by 52 degrees towards north in Delhi and the length of the shadow of Qutb Minar, at midday, would be nearly 288. 0 ft. Hence the difference between the longest (on 22nd December) and the shortest (on 22nd June) shadows would be 268.3 ft. and this facilitates the observer to determine comfortably in which Zodiac the sun is lying.

It should be mentioned here that, like the Meru Stambha in Delhi , Varaha Mihir built a similar pillar in Ghazni , Afghanistan , but with bricks, in stead of sandstone. So, it becomes evident that both the Qutb Minar and the minaret at Ghazni were built nearly seven centuries before the arrival of the Muslim invaders and hence they were superb examples of Hindu architecture. But the renowned historian John Marshall, in his Monuments of Muslim India, wrote, “The whole conception of the minar and almost every detail of its construction and ornamentations is essentially Islamic. Towers of this kind were unknown to the Indians, but to the Muhammadans they had long been familiar, whether as mazinas attached to mosques or as free standing towers like those at Ghazni.” [7] It should be mentioned here that the said comment of John Marshall is now being profusely used by the so called secular historians of India to attribute the authorship of the Qutb Minar to Qutb-ud-din Aibak.

It should be mentioned here that, Sir Syed Ahmed, the founder of the Aligarh Muslim University, used to believe that Qutb Minar had been authored by the Hindus and not by the Muslim rulers. In this context, it should also be noted that General Cunningham, the first Director of Archaeological Survey of India, used to hold the same view.

Read the full article here.

Also read the Part 1  & Part 2  of this series. Next article is here:- Part 4.

July 16, 2009

Distortion of Indian history – Part 2

By Dr Radhasyam Brahmachari 

**** Excerpts from Faith Freedom ****

What is the utility of studying history? From history, one learns the achievements of his ancestoes and their successes and failures. It enables him to analyse the reasons that brought the said successes and failures and hence helps him taking correct steps in present crises. So, if that history is erroneous or distorted, one fails to take proper steps to confront the national problems.

 But in India today, this right is being pitiably denied. They are permitted to know the history which is horribly distorted due to political reasons. Particularly the history of Muslim conquest and the period of Muslim rule, that lasted for nearly eight centuries, has been so distorted that it is almost impossible for an individual to salvage the true history from those garbage of lies and deceits.

Agra Fort

Agra Fort

The Fort at Agra:

Like the Red Fort in Delhi, the fortress at Agra also suffers similar misrepresentation. The invincible fort at Agra, as we see it today, was not built by any foreign Muslim invader and its authorship is falsely atributed to Akbar.. This marvellous exhibit of Hindu architecture, was also built by the Hindu kings well before the arrival of the barbaric Muslim invaders in India. Like the Red Fort in Delhi, the Muslim invaders forcefully occupied it and used it as their royal court and residence. During the time of Mahabharata, Agra belonged to the kingdom of Mathura ruled by the oppressive king Kansa, who used the prison at Agra to incarcerate his political rivals. In this regard, the Muslim chronicler Abdulla in his Tarikh-i-Daudi writes, “He (Sultan Sikandar Lodi) generally resided at Agra; it is said by some that Agra became a city in his time, before which it had been a mere village , but one of the old standing. The Hindus, indeed, Assert that Agra was a strong place in the days of Raja Kansa, ruled in Mathura, and who confined everyone who displeased him, in the fort at that place, so that in course of time it had become the established state prison”.

But in the same work, chronicler Abdulla says that Muhammad of Ghazni captured Agra and reduced it to a heap of ruins and writes, “In the year when the army of Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni invaded Hindustan, he so ruined Agra that it became one of the most insignificant villges of the land and  after that it improved from the times of Sultan Sikandar, and at length, in Akbar’s time, became the seat of the government of Delhi, and one of the chief cities of Hindustan”. It is important to note here that the above description admits that before the invasion of Mahmud of Ghazni, Agra was  city and not a village. 

It is important to note here that there are other evidence that suggest that the fort of Agra was there during the time of Babur. Babur set his foot at the fort of Agra for the first time on May 4, 1526, and before that his son Humayun had taken control of the fort. Thereafter, Babur left Agra on February 11, 1527, and proceeded to face Maharana Sangram Singh in the battle of Khanua, leaving the fort in the care of his son Humayun. So, the rational conclusion is that, there was a massive fort, made of stone, at Agra under the control of a Rajput King Jaipal and Muhammad Ghori occupied it by defeating Jaipal in the year 1192. Thereafter, when the fort came under the control of the Mughals, Akbar might have undertaken some repair and renovation work of the then existing fort.
Above all, there is no dispute among our historians that, whether it is the Red Fort in Delhi or the invincible fortress at Agra, Hindu style, particularly the Gujarati and Rajasthani style, is very prominent in the construction of the interior palaces, courts, halls and so on.

So, a group of historins, having more rational views, believe that all the historical monuments of Delhi and Agra, the authorship of which is at present being wrongly atributed to the Muslim rulers, were, in fact, built by the Hindu kings well before the arrival of the foreign Muslim invders. They also believe that in their endeavour to give these monuments an Islamic face, the Muslim rulers, in the name of repair and renovation, removed almost all the Hindu symbols from these monuments and buried them somewhere within the peripfery of those monuments. So a thorough scientific and archaeological investigations is urgently called for revealing the truth and settling all such contrary views.

Read the full article here.

References:

[1]  H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, The History of India, as told by its own historians

(in 8 Volumes), Low Price Publications,  New Delhi (1996) IV, 450.

[2]  H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson (ibid)  V, 295.

[3]  H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson (ibid) IV, 522.

[4]  V. A. Smith, Akbar the Great Mogul, Oxford Clarendon Press (1982), 76.

[5]  H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson (ibid) IV, 263-64.

[6]  R. C. Majumdar, H. C. Raychaudhury and K. Datta, An Advanced History of India, MacMillan & Co (1980), 579.

Also read Distortion of Indian history – Part 1

July 15, 2009

Distortion of Indian History – Part 1

This is a series of posts on Indian History.

                                                             ****Excerpts from Faith Freedom ****

 

Red Fort

Red Fort

 

By  Dr. Radhasyam Brahmachari

The Red Fort in Delhi:

Whenever we visit the historical monuments of Delhi and Agra, the guides tell us – this is the fort built by Emperor Akbar, or that is the palace built by Emperor Shah Jahan, or here is the minar made by Sultan Qutb-ud-din and so on and so forth. They try to convince us that all the forts, palaces and other monuments of excellent architecture in Delhi and Agra were authored by the Muslim invaders. We also give them a patient hearing and believe  in what they say, as our history books also give similar accounts. Above all, by going through such history books from our childhood, the claim of Muslim authorship of all these edifices has penetrated our mind so deeply that we never apply simple common sense to estimate the credibility of the said claim.

Our history books also tell us that Delhi fell to the Muslim invaders, for the first time in history, in 1192 AD, when Muhammad Ghori defeated Emperor Prithviraj Chauhan in the Second Battle of Tarain. So, it becomes evident that before this incident, Delhi was ruled by the Rajput kings and common sense tells us that Emperor Prithviraj  Chauhan and his ancestors also had forts and palaces as dwelling places as well as the seat of their governments. Definitely they did not live in mud houses or thatched cottages. So the question is – What happened to those forts and palaces and where they have gone?

Our historians also tell us that after capturing Delhi, Muhammad Ghori conquered the fort at Ajmer (Sanskrit: Ajeya Meru) in the same year and thereafter, he entrusted to his slave Qutb-ud-din the conquered territory and left India for Ghazni. Later on, Qutb-ud-din captured the forts at Gwalior, Meeut, Ranathombhor, Benares and so on and all these forts belonged to Hindu kings. Again the question arises- In pre-Islamic India, the Hindu kings had so many forts and palaces at so many places, how come then they had none in Delhi? Hence a group of historians believe that the Muslim invaders did not build a single fort or a palace, or any other mansion eiher in Delhi or in Agra and that all the existing forts and palaces, as we see them today, were originally built by he Hindu kings well before the arrival of the barbaric Muslim invaders. These Muslim aggressors only occupied those forts and palaces by force and utilised them as their dwelling places and as royal courts.

Qutb-ud-din’s court chronicler Hasan Nizami in his Taj-ul-Masir writes, “When he (Muhammad Ghori) arrived at Delhi, he saw a fortress which in height and strength had no equal nor second throught the length and breadth of seven climes”. The question is – Which was the fort Muhammad Ghori saw? Had he seen the Red Fort? There was no other fort that could match the description of Hasan Nizami. But our historians say that Shah Jahan, after ascending the throne of Delhi, decided to set up a new capital to be called Shahjahanabad in Delhi and as a part of that plan he built the Red Fort. Hence they write, “In 1638, Shah Jahan began in Delhi the construction of a new capital, that of Shahjahanbad, to contain within its perimeter a sumptuous palace-fortress fot the accommodation of the imperial household and the court.   The palce-fortress, the Red Fort as it is known because of the red sandstone fabric of its rampart walls, has been designed on an unprecedented scale with all the amenities of the busy and luxurious life of an imperial house and court provided for within its walls in a regular and systematic order”.

Our historians tell us that it took ten years to build the fort and write, “The fortress with its halls, palaces, pavalions and gardens was completed in 1648 when on an auspicious day the Emperor entered it ceremonially and formally inaugurated the capital city”. Surprisingly, the same historian writes in another place, “The Diwan-i-am in the Delhi fort, it has to be noted, is also in red sandstone, and it is definitely known to have been the work of Shah Jahan. Behind Diwan-i-am and separated from it by Machchhi Bhavan, stands the Diwan-i-Khas that was erected by, according to the inscription it bears, in 1636-37″. The question therefore arises- How could Shah Jahan complete the construction of Diwan-i-Am and Diwan-i-Khas, which were the integral parts of the Red Fort, nearly two years before the commencement of the construction of the Red Fort itself in 1638 AD?

At he same time, our historians say that while the construction of the Red Fort was in progress, Shah Jahan undertook a massive renovation and repair work of the older palaces and write, “Shah Jahan’s alteration and replacements in the earlier palace-fortress were carried out on a grandiose scale and apparently inspired by the desire to impart to the palaces nnd other appurtenances an appearence to suit the prevailing character of the court”. They also say that, as a part of that reconstruction work, Shah Jahan  built a Naubat Khana near the Diwan-i-Am and had a Persian couplet inscribed- “If there is paradise on the face of the earth, it is this, it is this, it is this”, on Diwan-i-Khas.These descriptions make one wonder about Shah Jahan’s authorship of the Red Fort. Had the Red Fort, with all its appurtenances, been a new creation of Shah Jahan, how could the need for reconstruction and remodelling of those newly built mansions and palaces arise? Furthermore, where were the older palaces mentioned above and what was their origin?

So, if we piece together all the information mentioned above, it becomes evident that there was an existing fortress in Delhi, built probably many years before the time of Shah Jahan, and Shah Jahan undertook a massive reconstruction and renovation work, mainly to remove all stone carvings bearing Hindu symbols and possible Sanskrit inscriptions and to convert all Hindu temples inside the fortress into mosques, with a view to giving the entire  edifice a Muslim face which our historians describe as an attempt to give the fortress “an appearence  to suit the prevailing (i.e. Muslim) character of the court”.

Shah Jahan’s authorship of the Red Fort becomes all the more suspect when one finds that there is an indirect mention of the Diwan-i-Khas in the Tabaquat-i-Nasisri by the Muslim chronicler Minhas-us-Siraj. He writes that nearly 400 years before the time of Shah Jahan, Bukhtiar Khilji, the then chief warlord of Bihar, came from Bihar to Delhi to meet Sultan Qutb-ud-din. During this visit Bukhtiar Khilji fought a duel with an elephant which took place in a white marble palace in Delhi. The question is – What other marble place, big enough for holding a duel with an elephant, could be than the Diwan-i-Khas in the Red Fort? The incident conclusively proves that the Red Fort in Delhi, with Diwan-i-Khas as its integral part, existed more that 400 yers before the time of Shah Jahan.

Moreover, another Muslim chronicler Zia-ud-din Barni in his Tarikh-i-Firozshahi writes, “Towards the end of the year 695H (1296 AD), Alauddin (Khilji) entered Delhi in great pomp and with a large force. He took his seat upon the throne in the Daulat khana-i-Julus and proceeded to the Kushk-e-Lal (red palace), where he took his abode”.To describe the sme incident, our historians write, “Ala-ud-din then made his triumphal entry into the capital on October 22, 1296, and took up his residence in the Red Palace of Balban, where he was enthroned”. Who was this Balban?He was no other than Ghias-ud-din Balban, whose original name was Ulugh Khan and became a commander under Sultana Razia. Ulugh Khan belonged to the Khakan tribe of Albari in Turkestan, who was captured by the Mongols as a slave and later on sold to Khwaja Jamaluddin in Ghazni, who brought him to Delhi. Ulugh Khan definitely did not bring a red palace from Turkestan and our history books nowhere mention that he built a red palace in Delhi. So, what could that Red Palace (Kushk-i-Lal) be if not the Red Fort?

It has been stated earlier that the fortress, now known as the Red Fort, fell to the foreign invader Muhammad Ghori, for the first time in history, in 1192 AD. Later, several Muslim dynasties used that fortress, built by the Rajput kings, as their royl court and residence. Quite naturally, for some time it went to Ghias-ud-din Balban, alias Ulugh Khan. But it is a pity that despite all such infallible evidences, our historians persist in writing that the sais Red Fort was built by Shah Jahan.

Today, there are two forts in Delhi, the Red Fort and the Purana Quila and our historins believe that the Purana Quila was built by Sher Shah. So, according to their version of history, Delhi did not have a fort before the time of Sher Shah. Again the question is – Which fort Muhammad Ghori had seen, nearly 350 years before the time of Sher Shah, after setting his feet in Delhi? And which fort did the Muslim rulers of Delhi, before the time of Sher Shah, use as their royal court and residence? Above all, how could Delhi play the role of the capital of Delhi Sultanate without hving a fortress?

From the above discussions, it becomes evident that the real authors of today’s Red Fort were the Hindu kings of India, perhaps several centuries before the times of Shah Jahan. But after the defeat of Emperor Prithwiraj Chauhan, it fell into the hands of the Muslim invader Muhammad Ghori. Later on, Shah Jahan undertook a massive repairing and renovation work, mainly to remove all stone carvings bearing Hindu symbols and possible Sanskrit inscriptions and to convert all Hindu temples inside the fortress into mosques, with a view to giving the entire  edifice a Muslim face, as we see it today.

To settle all the above mentioned disputes, it is urgently necessary for the Government to ask the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) to ascertain the age of the edifice, now known as the Red Fort, through scientific methods. Only such a step can help the truth come out.

References:

[1] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson, The History of India, as told by its own historians

(in 8 Volumes), Low Price Publications,  New Delhi (1996) II,216.

[2] R. C. Majumdar (Gen Ed), History & Culture of the Indian People (in 12

Volumes), Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Mumbai (1996), VII, 787.

[3] R. C. Majumdar (ibid) Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, VII, 784-85.

[4] R. C. Majumdar (ibid) Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, VII, 783.

[5] R. C. Majumdar (ibid), Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, VII,789.

[6] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson (ibid) II, 306.

[7] R. C. Majumdar (ibid), Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, VII, 790.

[8] H. M. Elliot and J. Dowson (ibid) III, 160.

[9] R. C. Majumdar (ibid), Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, VI,18.

[10] R. C. Majumdar, H. C. Raychaudhury and K. Datta,  An Advanced History of India, MacMillan & Co (1980),578

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