Friday, 31 March 2017

Wiping Mughals From History

Last year there was a campaign in India to wipe the shame of the Muslim conquest from their history books. It was run under the hashtag 'Remove Mughals From Books'.

Mughal Conquest Legacy Is Controversial ...

The Mughal Empire as their rule was called, not only consolidated the religion of Islam in South Asia (often by force), it also spread Islamic (Arab) arts as well. This heritage remains visible in Indian architecture, literature and cuisine to this day.

But in the increasingly nationalistic Hindu India of today, many are saying that the Mughals used the sword to kill Hindus, destroyed Hindu temples, and forced many hundreds of thousands of them to convert to Islam. These claims are promoted by many websites like this one, and undoubtedly has some historical fact as well. India's Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani, complained about a primary school history book, claiming that it misrepresented religious tensions in the country when the Mughals invaded, and also that it insulted Shivaji (the Hindu warrior king who many in the BJP party view as a national hero). 

This whole issue is a cause for simmering resentment amongst people on both sides of the religious divide, with debate about the legacy of the Mughal empire as virulent, if not more so, than the debate about the legacy of the British Raj, which supplanted the weakened Mughal Empire in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. India is 79.8% Hindu and 14.2% Islamic, which still makes it the third largest Muslim population in the world - many Muslims are descendants of the forced conversions of Hindus and others to the self proclaimed religion of peace. 


  1. Hindú nationalism is on the rise in India. It is hard to distinguish from fascism and here we have the fact that our democracy is based on feudalism and patronage.

    In the recent row about racism after Africans in India being attacked, in which a government minister claimed his remarks about India having its own blacks living in the south, where misread and that he meant to say that it was the British who were the racists.

    This gives you a clue as to how things are moving in today's India.

    1. I am not really familiar with current Indian local politics, so the racism row only made it as a smaller story on the BBC. Therefore his blaming the British for some reason is a bit I don't really understand? Thanks for the comment M Khan


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