'INDIA ABROAD' on new textbooks

H.B.Dave hbd at DDIT.ERNET.IN
Tue Feb 29 10:58:20 UTC 2000

Vishal Agarwal wrote:
> ----Original Message Follows----
> From: Shrisha Rao <shrao at IA.NET>
> Subject: Re: 'INDIA ABROAD' on new textbooks
> Date: Mon, 28 Feb 2000 11:56:44 -0600
> However, I must add that Praful Bidwai isn't the most credible person one
> could find to write a proper rebuttal.  He has no credentials as a
> historian, and his bilious comments might actually have the opposite
> effect
> VA: Praful Bidwai is a hardcore self professed Marxist political commentator
> who has appeared in TV discussions and wrote profusely in the Times of India
> and communist publications like the Frontline magazine as a 'secular
> Intellectual' and a 'historian'. He has an inveterate hatred for BJP etc.,
> and has opposed the Nuclear Program of India with vengeance, which is not
> surprising because he lives off a hefty grant from a European green
> organization. I used to cut his articles regularly and save them. Some gems
> from him in TOI: (paraphrasing from memory)
> 1. The Sangh Parivar patronised the Ram temple agitation but left out the
> Krishma Janmabhoomi and Kashi Visvanath shrines because Rama was a high
> caste Kshatriya while Krishna is an OBC and Shiva an ST (kirata)
> 2. The Bharata Ekatma yatra of Murli Manohar Joshi left a bloodbath in
> Kerala and has strained the communal atmosphere there. (The TOI published
> his article containing these words on its editorial page A DAY BEFORE the
> yatra actually ENTERED Kerala)
> 3. In another article in the TOI, he chastized Mulayam Singh for being
> lenient despite the fact that his police killed a score (official figure, I
> have seen 55 obituaries with addresses and photographs of victims) of
> 'Karsewaks' at Ayodhya. An irate reader wrote to the TOI asking if Bidwai
> wanted more people to be killed to satisfy his 'secular' beliefs.
> 4. In another article, he suggested that OBC's, SC/ST, Muslims and
> Christians and other minorities should form a 'Secular Brigade' to resist,
> even with violence, the 'communal, hindutva' brigade of Upper Caste Hindus.
> Others, who write in the same vein, are: Amulya Ganguli, Anikendra Nath Sen,
> Seema Mustafa, Achin Vachnaik, Shabana Azmi, Anil Dharker, Badri Raina, D N
> Jha......As for their credentials as historians, please read 'Eminent
> Historians'by Arun Shourie.
> It is a pity that ill informed Western Academicians are so easily mislead!
> This is my last post on this topic.
> Vishal
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Prof. H.B. Dave
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