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Thursday, Nov 14, 2019

Need to write history from Indian point of view: Shah

cities Updated: Oct 17, 2019 18:47 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent

Union home minister Amit Shah on Thursday laid emphasis on the need to write history from the Indian point of view.

He also said the First War of Independence in 1857 would have been regarded as a revolt had it not been for Veer Savarkar, who called it the first freedom struggle.

The BJP leader’s remarks about the Hindutva icon came two days after the Maharashtra BJP unit said in its election manifesto that the party would ask the Centre to confer the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, on Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, popularly known as Veer Savarkar.

“Had it not been for Veer Savarkar, the 1857 ‘kranti’ (revolt) would not have become history and we would have been seeing it from the British point of view,” the home minister said.

“It was Savarkar who gave the name First War of Independence to the 1857 ‘kranti’, otherwise, our children would have known it as a revolt,” he said, inaugurating a two-day international seminar on ‘Guptvanshak-Veer: Skandgupta Vikramaditya’ at Banaras Hindu University (BHU) in Varanasi. Bharat Adhyayan Kendra of BHU organised the event.

Shah appealed to Indian academics to stop blaming British historians and Leftists for writing the ‘wrong history of India’.

“How long you will keep criticising the British and the Leftists for injustice to Indian history? Who stopped you from writing history based on truth,” Shah said, adding that there was a need to write India’s glorious history, which had suffered injustice, based on facts and truth.

He asked the historians to write the history of 25 such kingdoms and 200 such great personalities who were overlooked by historians.

“Forget who wrote what. Don’t get into controversy. Write history from the Indian point of view,” Shah said.

Discussing the Maurya and Gupta dynasties, Shah said both took Indian culture to the great heights across the world. He said the Indian boundary extended up to Afghanistan during the reign of Skandagupta, which he described as a golden era. There were world class facilities in various fields, including military, literature and history, in the Gupta ruler’s time, the home minister said.

Shah also said Skandagupta defeated the Huns when they attacked India. He also said it was believed that the Gupta ruler stayed at Ghazipur in the Purvanchal region (present-day eastern UP) and worked from here. An inscription of Skandgupta was found during an excavation Ghazipur a few years ago, he said.

While dwelling at length on the role and relevance of the Gupta ruler, he spoke on the political future of the nation and praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for making India “regain” its respect in the world.

“Respect for the country has increased under him. The world pays attention to our point of view. The world listens when our PM speaks on international developments,” Shah said.

He also remembered Madan Mohan Malviya and thanked him for setting up the BHU.

Whatever might have been on the mind of Madan Mohan Malviyaji at the time of the establishment of the BHU, this university had played a key role in propagating the Hindu culture and stood tall to protect it, Shah said.

Chief minister Yogi Adityanath said it was a matter of great joy that Skandgupta was being remembered in BHU.

He said great men were overlooked in history by some people due to a conspiracy. But under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India was getting great honour across the world and great men were being remembered now, he said.

He also said nullifying Article 370 was a great and historic decision. Shah released a book based on the life of Skandagupta on the occasion. Union minister Mahendra Nath Pandey was also present.