What an archaeologist's memoir reveals about Ram temple and Babri Masjid

Balbir Punj
Balbir PunjJan 23, 2016 | 19:21

What an archaeologist's memoir reveals about Ram temple and Babri Masjid

Fresh light on the events before the demolition of the old mosque built over the Ram Janmabhumi temple has surfaced in the then superintendent archaeologist KK Mohammad’s recent memoirs, Me, the Bharatiyan, written in Malayalam. I have only seen the news report of the release of the book brought out by a prestigious Kerala newspaper. An English rendering of the book, one hopes, will soon be out.



Mohammad, who was in charge of the excavations in Ayodhya, has revealed two important things: one, the Left historians of the day led by Prof Irfan Habib ensured that the proposal to hand over the site to the Hindu community did not succeed. They encouraged the extremist view among Muslims against any peaceful transfer. Such an agreed transfer was one of the solutions being considered between 1989 and 1991.

The second revelation is the conclusion of the excavation team of the Archeological Survey of India that the disputed mosque in Ayodhya was indeed built over — and with the parts of — the temple that existed prior to being destroyed by Mughal emperor Babar’s commander, Mir Baqi.

The conclusion was based on the evidence of, among other things, basalt stone pillars with the Hindu symbol of Poorna Kalasha in the construction of the mosque structure and underneath it. This matter has been discussed so often and in so detail that we need not go into it. What is evident in Mohammad’s revelation is his intense devotion to truth, a trait alien to most of the secularists.

It is the Left historians’ role in distorting truth that should be a matter of public concern. Under the successive Congress governments at the Centre, distortion of Indian history through the ancient technique of suppressio vary, suggestio falsy, has been turned into a fine art by the so-called secularists. The Left historians have done much damage to Indian history in many other ways. They have invented apologies for Aurangzeb’s anti-Hindu and anti-Sikh measures by picking up a few donations the emperor made for some temples. They have sought to obfuscate the terrible pain inflicted by successive Muslim invaders on the majority population of the country and the choice these invaders placed before the people: convert or be killed.



Nobody in his senses would suggest that the present day followers of the religion should pay for the sins of their ancestors. But at least a seeker of truth would agree that what academicians should present is the fact and leave the interpretation to others. One readily agrees that the present values should not be applied to the past generation.

For the left movement, ideology is supreme, while truth and facts are secondary. Interpretation of ideology is obviously the prerogative of the leadership. Needless to say, the caucus of the day controlling the organisation constitutes the leadership. Understanding of history, economics, human relations, international affairs, in short all aspects of life, becomes subordinate to the whims of those at the helm.

As a result, there is usually an ocean of difference between what the Left preaches and practises. Communists claim to be fighters against imperialism. But during the 1942 Quit India movement, they abused national leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi and Subhas Chandra Bose and worked as spies for the British. After India got Independence, they launched an armed rebellion against the state.

However, the worst sin Communists committed was to work for the vivisection of the country and join hands with Mohammed Ali Jinnah and the British for the creation of a theocratic Pakistan. And now they claim to be the flagbearers of secularism! As for the second trend, of Islamists’ running amok, the phenomenon isn’t confined to India alone, as seen in the emergence of terrorist outfits like the Islamic State. The global response is not apt either.



US President Barack Obama, for instance, in his State of the Union message to the US Congress mentioned the need for the religious community to look inward and find out why the call for violence and the appeal of forcing their religion over the whole world through brutality are finding response within the community. He wanted an internal movement to scotch such beliefs. This is a wishful thinking.

Also, it’s ironical that Saudi Arabia has joined other nations in an international effort to eradicate organisations like ISIS and Al Qaeda. After all, the same royalty funds a vast network of religious schools among Muslims that exclusively plant and promote the militant Wahaabism across the world. Same is true for Pakistan. Both the nations are close allies of the US in its fight against terror! The world can hardly hope to vanquish terror with such double-standards.

As for KK Mohammad, he is a practising Muslim who proudly calls himself a “Bharatiya” in his memoir. He is a shining example of academic honesty, a trait anathema to the Left. One hopes others follow the suit.

Last updated: January 27, 2016 | 18:17
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