Arun Gupta suvidya at WORLDNET.ATT.NET
Sun Oct 1 12:02:16 UTC 2000

Romila Thapar writes (Frontline) :

  In 1968, I had argued at a session of the Indian History Congress
  that invasion was untenable and that the language -- Indo-Aryan --
  had come with a series of migrations and therefore involving
  multiple avenues of acculturation of peoples.

Unfortunately that had not reached the textbooks 10 years later, when
I was in high school with an NCERT curriculum.  My understanding is
despite all the talk of BJP changing textbooks, it is still not in the

Most Indians have the Invasion view of history and not the Incursion view.

I think the interview of Gita Mehta by C.J.S Wallia in 1997 exemplifies this.

See http://www.indiastar.com/wallia4.htm

Gita Mehta is an author, daughter of a prominent Indian politician.
Of her and her husband (URL above):

    As quoted in a magazine article in Vanity Fair Richard Eyre,
    an old friend of the couple and currently the artistic director of
    London's Royal National, thought, "the couple were preternaturally
    well-read, politically, culturally, musically literate in the
    widest sense."


    The Mehtas are central figures in New York's literary-publishing world,
    where they hold frequent salons for the likes of Gabriel Garcia Marquez,
    V.S. Naipaul, and Norman Mailer.

Excerpt :

c.j.w.: In your book you have said that the Aryans and Dravidians are a
different race. I don't understand that.

Gita Mehta: Well, you are from the Punjab. You are of a different race from
someone from Kerala.

[c.j.w. dissents that there was an invasion.]

Gita Mehta: There wasn't an Aryan Invasion?! I could quote much chapter and
verse that there was.


So, here is this "literate in the widest sense" cosmopolitan person who does
not know better.  Average Indians with their state-dictated textbooks, till
recently dictated by an intellectual group dominated by the likes of Romila
Thapar, can hardly be expected to know better.

-arun gupta

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