[INDOLOGY] Malhotra and plagiarism

Robert Zydenbos zydenbos at uni-muenchen.de
Fri Jul 24 10:03:23 UTC 2015

Dominik Wujastyk wrote [in response to Artur Karp]:

> “Do we need to talk to them?” you ask. I don't think so, either.
> Not because there isn't an issue here. But because we're
> unqualified. [...]

But we are far more qualified to talk back than they are to talk about us.

It seems that most persons on this list are engaged in the study of
classical Sanskrit texts, ancient Indian history and other fine things.
One crucial point of the Malhotra plagiarism issue, which affects us
directly, seems to elude some of the readers. For that reason, it may be
useful to point out what is happening here from a not entirely
classicist perspective –

Mr Malhotra is neither a traditionalist nor a conservative. What he is
promoting is a political fantasy about the Indian nation that was
concocted mainly in the first half of the twentieth century. (H.-J.
Klimkeit’s 1981 book Der politische Hinduismusgives a step-by-step
overview of this development.) This was a time when some people also in
certain Western nations created new fantasies about themselves: about
their origins, their greatness, how they were wronged by other nations
and needed revenge, etc.

Now comes that crucial point. It is a matter of intellectual integrity
and the search for academically defensible truth on the one hand vs.
propagandistic falsehood on the other – and how Malhotra fits us in.
What Mr Malhotra does in his pamphleteering is evidence (was this still
necessary?) that he respects neither our work nor any of us. People such
as he want to silence or shout down academic researchers in India and
abroad if and when the findings of scholarly and scientific research
contradict the fantasy.

Mr Malhotra writes plainly abusively about scholars of Indian culture
(with whose views other scholars may disagree: that is a different
matter and is a valid part of the academic process) and disregards
scholarly standards, whether ‘Indian’ or ‘non-Indian’, whatever he
claims. If he plagiarizes (i.e., steals) something from one of our
colleagues (regardless of who, or where that person is) and tinkers with
it to make it fit his political program, it seems clear that he needs
academia for his program and will also attempt to corrupt it if that
suits his purpose./

/Mr Malhotrashouts that Indians must take back the study of Indian
culture? What nonsense. Real traditional studies were never taken away
from them. Or did all the pāṭhaśālās, the gurukulas, the Sanskrit
Colleges disappear? And I know of a fact that what is taught in Indian
universities is not (and cannot be) a mindless copy of what is taught in
Western universities. /No: we must take back our own work, in a most
concrete way, and fight plagiarism, distortion//and deliberate


So it is not only about steya, the wrong of stealing something from
Nicholson and others. It is also about satya. If we take our work and
ourselves seriously, we have no choice but to condemn such doings of Mr
Malhotra in very clear terms.

This also goes for Dr. Elst, who earlier supported the now notorious
forger-tinkerer N.S. Rajaram (dear Koenraad: you ought to know better by
now and not support such causes).

Probably Malhotra will again call me an “especially nasty anti-Hindu
(http://beingdifferentforum.blogspot.de/2014_11_01_archive.html). To
criticize him apparently means that you’re “anti-Hindu” (and nasty). I
see no other possible explanation. And the gods know that he is
misrepresenting me too.


P.S. Sorry, but Dr. Collins’ defending Malhotra looks like a rather bad
joke: “cryptomnesia” expressing itself in rather lengthy literally
copied, but also tinkered, passages? Is that supposed to be psychology?
And stylizing him as a “public intellectual”, comparing him to Sri
Aurobindo, Tagore and Sudhir Kakar – no, plainly no, irrespective of how
friendly the California Institute of Integral Studies and Malhotra’s
Infinity Foundation are or how much or little money flowed:



-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <https://list.indology.info/pipermail/indology/attachments/20150724/85e302a2/attachment.htm>

More information about the INDOLOGY mailing list