25 September, 2020

The Erect Hindu Spine

William Dalrymple and his cartel are not the custodians of communal harmony

Sandeep Adhwaryu
The Erect Hindu Spine
William Dalrymple has hit where it hurts the most: the unchronicled history of the Hindus, their amazing quality of forgetfulness and scourge of disunity. When V.S. Naipaul points to these areas of darkness, he speaks as one of us. But Dalrymple looks no different from other white Mughals or their munshis for whom India is no more than a mass of koi hai people and places to be enjoyed, ruled and to write memoirs about. As stinking and rude as Macaulay's pen, Dalrymple wants to convey two things—(a) Sir Vidia has fallen because he came to the bjp office; and (b) his lament on the fall of the great centre of Hindu civilisation Vijayanagara is meaningless, because, like Godhra, this too was either a case of self-destruction or an inconsequential mark in the long history of Hindu-Muslim brotherhood epitomised in the Islamicised clothing of the Vijayanagara kings. Then, he goes on to quote western scholars and juxtaposes the great peace missions of Ajmer Sharif and Nizamuddin Chishti, who to many noted historians were nothing more than 'scouts and guides'...


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