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Hidden History: Hindutva Sangha Parivar’s false propaganda on Tipu Sultan

The blatantly false propaganda being spread by the Hindutva Sangha Parivar over Tipu Sultan is reaching outlandish proportions.

A Hindutva troll is trying to teach me my own family history with regard to Tipu Sultans patronage of Hindu temples. She has been posting all kinds of nonsense on my timeline, disputing what I know about my own ancestors, and I have blocked her. Almost all the wars in medieval Deccan India were over territory, power, riches, gold. Almost none were over religion.

Every Muslim king had Hindu ministers and Hindu generals.

Every Hindu king had Muslim generals and Muslim ministers.

Temples were looted because that is where gold and diamonds were kept. Many Hindu kings looted Hindu temples in the lands they conquered, such as the Hindu Marathas looting my family shrine of Sringeri Shree Sharada Peetham in 1791 AD. Indian history is far more complex and nuanced than the simplistic version being propagated by the Hindutva Sangha Parivar of “Cruel Muslims massacring and raping innocent Hindus and destroying their temples”.

My fathers family served in very senior positions in Tipu Sultans court.

Several of the Shankaracharyas of Sringeri have come from my fathers family. In 1791 AD, the Hindu Marathas looted our family shrine of Sringeri Shree Sharada Peetham, and killed several priests.

Tipu Sultan sent his army to expel the Maratha invaders, and helped rebuild the shrines at Sringeri Shree Sharada Peetham. Tipu Sultan also gave several expensive gifts to the Sreekantha temple at Nanjangud, where my fathers family members were priests. This Hindutva troll disputed all these on my timeline, saying that this was false propaganda spread by ” sickulars”.

True that Tipu Sultan carried out brutal military conquests of Coorg, Mangalore, North Karnataka, Kerala, etc., with cruel massacres.

But within his own kingdom of Mysore, Tipu Sultan was revered as a just, benevolent, enlightened, and SECULAR king who ushered in an era of prosperity, and introduced modern agriculture, technology, and administration.

True that Tipu massacred Christians and Hindus in his invasions of Kerala. Has anyone noted how many Kerala Muslims too were massacred by Tipu during his invasions of Kerala?

A more telling example from my maternal family’s history of the Vijayanagaram empire.

My maternal family were the Tatacharyas, who were the hereditary ministers in the court of the Vijayanagaram empire. They were mostly massacred after the battle of Talikota in 1565 AD, when Vijayanagaram was conquered by an alliance of the kingdoms of Bahmani, Bidar, Berar, Bijapur, Golconda, Ahmednagar, all of which were ruled by Muslim dynasties.

But after 450 years, I am objective enough not to claim that my maternal family was massacred by Muslims.

Although the Bahmani, Bidar, Berar, Bijapur, Golconda, Ahmednagar kingdoms were all ruled by Muslim dynasties, all their armies were led by Hindu generals, and they all had Hindu dewans and hindu ministers.

And while the Vijayanagaram emperors were devout Hindus, they had Muslim generals and Muslim administrators in senior positions.

True that Aurangzeb beheaded the revered Sikh Guru Tegh Bahadur when Guru Tegh Bahadur protested against Aurangzeb’s cruel treatment of Kashmiris.

But how many recall that a few years earlier, the very same Guru Tegh Bahadur was the deputy commander in chief of Aurangzeb’s military campaign to conquer Assam?

In fact, 148 of Aurangzeb’s top military generals were Hindus.

Jaswant Singh, Jaya Singh, Raja Rajrup, Kabir Singh, Arghanath Singh, Prem Dev Singh, Dilip Roy, Rasik Lal Crory, Raja Vim Singh, Indra Singh, Achalaji, Arjuji were some of Aurangzeb’s top ministers, advisors, and generals.

True that Aurangzeb demolished many Hindu Temples. But Aurangzeb also built a Balaji temple near Chitrakoot.

Indian history is much more complex and nuanced than the simplistic version being propagated by the Hindutva Sangha Parivar of “Evil Muslims massacring and raping innocent Hindus and destroying Hindu temples”.

 

Ravi Visvesvaraya Sharada Prasad

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