Ayodhya for dummies – the real ones
Mr Vir Sanghvi’s Q&A titled Ayodhya for Dummies is nothing short of a spectacle.
We wonder if this was to atone for his ‘Liberhan report is complete rubbish‘ comment. We would not be surprised if the Q&A took two passes to write. The first pass would have the right answers, and the second pass a varnish job to give it a secular shine.
2. Did Muslim invaders destroy Hindu temples?
Ans. The sad answer is yes, they did. Some of this was for the purposes of looting (temples were rich) but some of the destruction was religion-driven.
Why is this a sad answer ? If raiding of temples were only for looting, the invaders would have left the structures untouched. This was almost never the case. Looting was overlaid on what was primarily seen a religious duty. None of this of course rubs off on present day Muslims. So there is no need to get defensive about the true nature of Mughal rule.
Yes it was. There is no getting around that. Religious tolerance was not always a quality prized by medieval Muslim warriors.
But let’s keep in mind that those were different times. There was an era when Hinduism had been eclipsed in much of India by Buddhism. When Hinduism made a comeback some centuries later, Hindu kings destroyed Buddhist monasteries, more or less throwing Buddhism out of India.
I dont think people in India care about “medieval Muslim warrious” (see the dilution in action).Before the secular varnish, the sentence would have read, “…Mughal rulers of India“. Why attempt to “get around” anything either. People will then wonder if it was easy for the historians to “get around” Akbar or the Bahmanis ?
The Buddhism argument is a polemic. Also funny because it unwittingly does great disservice to the Indian Muslims and underhandedly supports the demolition. It pulls the rug from under the Muslims in the sense that it says that the actions of the kar sevaks could indeed be justified if they had rebuilt exactly one Buddhist site first. They could even take Mathura if they rebuild yet another Buddhist site. It is silly to bring Mr Abhishek Singhvi’s TV soundbits nonsense under the microscope.
Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism are all native religions to the area. Throughout history each of them have had their crests and troughs. Hinduism predates and embraces all – even giving Buddha a position in the Dasavataram.
6. Was this true?
Ans. Probably not. There are many controversies about the historical Ram, his very existence and the location of his Ayodhya. Some historians and archaeologists dispute that today’s Ayodhya is the same as the Ayodhya of the Ramayana.
Moreover, several other spots have also been claimed as birthplaces of Ram. So it is not clear that this one has any special claim. It is just one of many.
Besides, the overwhelming majority of Hindus had never heard of this spot till the controversy began. So if Ram was born here thousands of years ago, why did most of us only hear of the place in the mid-80s?
Look how he sets it up. It as he suggests there is a controversy about Ram’s very existance, then that surely overtakes all other controversies, does it not ? It Lord Ram did not even exist, then it means he was never born, which also means there can not possibly be a birthplace. This is a time tested technique. The Indian opinion makers forward this as their basic position and proceed to offer each argument as a concession from their stand. How clever ?
Well, King Dasharathan did not leave a GPS receiver as proof of where his son was born. History is funny in the sense that you can dispute everything. How do we know where the prophets were born ? This is the same logic that questions the Ram Sethu.
The overwhelming majority of Hindus (rather Indians) have not heard of this because the overwhelming majority spend all their time fetching drinking water or stepping over sewage thanks to the fake socialist state imposed on them.
Mr Jairam Ramesh of the Congress party himself admitted that under the Congress Party’s 50+ year watch India has been groomed to sweep the Nobel prizes for filth and garbage. Lets say the overwhelming majority had in fact “heard about this spot”, would it then make the razing of the mosque justifiable or atleast understandable ? If that is all you have, then the BJPs Ram Janmabhoomi movement was just an exercise to make the majority “hear about this spot” and let emotion guide events.
The question should be the following:
If there was ever a Ram temple commemorating his birthplace at Ayodhya, based on what we know about the Mughals, what are the chances that they pulled it down ?
Even the answer to that is not going to help us.
Like every other issue in front of us today, I first suspect the masked man behind the curtain who everyone else in the room is trained to ignore. The constitutional benefits that can accrue due to group identity and the role of the leadership in protecting these benefits. At first glance, the Muslims of today have little reason not to agree to a relocation in exchange for real harmony. We hear relocation of mosques in routine in Pakistan. However, I can understand why they would be loathe to do so. It would seriously weaken their group identity, signal a colossal failure of the protectors, and correspondingly strengthen the other side.
A complete separation of rigid identity from benefits is the only way we can hope to take on such big issues. This strikes at the heart of the entire political setup in the country today. Yet this is our ticket to freedom away from a guaranteed identity based showdown in the near future.