By M Ghazali Khan
Inferiority complex is not just a psychological curse but is also a dangerous overall social and national disorder. Anyone suffering from it behaves in a strange, bizarre, and unpredictable manner. On individual level, some sufferers change their style of living if possible, and even try to change their identity as well, such as using a different surname. Some start claiming to be heirs of great dynasties and famous persons in history. Some, being paupers, pretend to be wealthy and start behaving as such without giving a serious thought that their lie will not hold for long. Some coming from a lowly background and being acutely aware of the same, if by chance achieve some status or earn such wealth, go as far as introducing their uneducated parents or brethren as their servants. But the collective inferiority complex of a group produces a coterie of senseless and mentally-imbalanced people. The living example of this affliction are the saffron fanatics of India today.
In a recent NDTV programme, ‘Big Fight’, an RSS ideologue claimed, much to the amusement of the audience, that not only Taj Mahal and Red Fort were built by Hindu kings but even the famous Jama Masjid of Delhi is, in fact, ‘Yamnuna Temple’. Just as a mentally-challenged person does not feel embarrassed in introducing his parents as his servants, the ‘ideologue’ in question kept making comical claims one after the other, making his audience burst into laughter. The programme host, a well-known journalist, too could not control his laughter and held his head down with both hands, uttering ‘Oh My God’.
In this regard, one may remember a much satirized, lowly, and timid animal known as the jackal for having an inferiority complex due to its heritage, hiding it as a superiority complex. The narration of some literary jokes about it will make the issue much easier to understand.
Jackals live in herds in holes dug away from human habitations. They venture out at night in herds in search of their prey. Being naturally timid, they prey on small animals like rodents or feed upon the corpses of dead animals or survive on crops of grain or fruits sowed by farmers. Each herd is led by a senior jackal who, after brief intervals, howls in high pitch and is responded to in unison by other jackals. Those from north India having lived in small towns near lowlands or jungles would understand this better. In Persian literature, this march of the jackals is used in a sarcastic manner for poor and ‘lowly’ people’s movement. This situation of a large number of jackals following one of them gives the senior jackal a sense of superiority. So, intoxicated by a feeling of grandeur, he howls: ‘My father was a king’. In response, the herd howls back: ‘There is no doubt, there is no doubt’.
However, if the readers are shocked at the claims made by the RSS ‘thinker’, they should then hold their breath. They should go through these masterpieces of research by the saffron historians:
Ancient Italy was a Hindu country and the Pope was a Hindu priest.
English is a dialect of Sanskrit.
Ancient England too was ‘a Hindu country.’
The term Christmas is actually Krishna-mas, i.e. the month of Krishna, the Hindu incarnation at the time of the Mahabharata era. The word “mas” in Sanskrit means “month”.
Westminster Abbey in London is known as a church all over the world, and a venue where English monarchs are crowned and where in the cemetery Englishmen of distinction are buried. But according to the RSS historian’s research but unknown to the British public, Westminster Abbey is also a very ancient Shiva temple, since it contains an ancient sacred Hindu stone emblem since 1296 A.D. What is of further and even greater importance is that a sacred Hindu stone continues to be Great Britain’s royal deity almost exactly as Lord Shiva has been the Hindu rulers’ deity in India since time immemorial.
All these ‘original’ findings were neatly researched and put together as long ago as 1973 by Prof. Amarnath, Member of Institute for Rewriting Indian History, Delhi in his seminal title, Some Missing Chapters of World History (Itihas Shodh Sansthan, History of the Pure and Chaste Land – Organisation for Purifying History, Mehrauli, New Delhi-30).
It is not the first time that a Hindutva scholar has made such a bizarre claim on Indian television. Before him another RSS scholar and Delhi University Professor Rakesh Sinha had made similar claim and had asked: if the Muslim rulers were so technologically advanced, how is it that did not build similar structures in the countries they came from? Would someone ask the learned professor which Hindu architecture looks like the Taj Mahal or other Muslim monuments? The interesting thing is that the saffron brigade remains divided whether to reject these Muslim monuments as unrepresentative of what they call Indian culture or appropriate them as Hindu monuments.
Migration of people from one country to another has been impacting and enriching cultures of all societies all over the world since time immemorial. Nowhere is the richness of cross-cultural pollination as visible as it is in India. From languages, dialects, cuisine, and dress to architecture, this is reflected in almost every walk of life. This cross-cultural pollination has given India a rare blend of cultural richness and rare architecture. Take, for example, the languages. So deep is the impact of languages upon each other that despite the saffron brigade’s hatred against anything that has to do with Muslims, they can’t help but utter Urdu words like, for example, the notorious ‘Jumla’, spoken by the BJP president, Amit Shah or ‘NojawanoN’, spoken by Narendra Modi. Even the kurta-pajama donned by the Prime Minister with great fondness is the product of cross-cultural pollination. If you talk of food, kebabs and pullao or kebab and pilau are found almost everywhere in the Muslim world. But the delicious biryani, kababs, nihari, and other mouthwatering dishes in India are the products of the marriage between Indian, Central Asian, Turkish, and Iranian cuisines.
In order to see the impact of this influence, you do not have to travel to Iran, Afghanistan or Central Asia. Just search ‘Indo-Iranian architecture’ in Google and you will be surprised to see the striking similarities between Muslim monuments in India and the mosques and tombs in Iran, Afghanistan, and Central Asia. Even today Agha Khan Foundation imports workers from Central Asia to repair monuments in Delhi like Humayun Tomb. Obviously, Indian builders/architects were also employed in the construction of Muslim monuments in India and the impact of Indian architecture on these buildings was inevitable. Using this reflection of Indian touch in these buildings, Hindutva elements are trying to prove that these monuments were originally either palaces of Hindu kings or Hindu temples appropriated by Muslims.
The founder of this crude school in Indian History was Purushottam Nagesh Oak, commonly known as P. N. Oak. In 1975, he told senior journalist and author Mihir Bose that he had joined the Indian Army in November 1941 and was posted to Singapore eight days before the Japanese attack. He then got involved in Netaji Subhash Bose’s efforts, with Japanese help, to free India, and became ADC to Major General J K Bhonsle of the Indian National Army. Bose says that British archives show that Bhonsle, who had defected from the British Army, was in fact a British spy. But at the time of the interview, these documents and this information were not available so he could not grill Oak on this issue. Oak later briefly worked with Hindustan Times and The Statesman as a reporter and also as a government publicist for the Five-Year Plans but was suddenly sacked. At this juncture, the United States Information Service (USIS) came to his help and appointed him as an editor at the United States Information Service, where he regularly sent telegrams back to Washington about what was being said in the Indian press. (From Midnight to Glorious Morning?: India Since Independence, Haus Publishing Limited).
According to Bose, Oak wrote under different names, all pseudonyms, vigorously praising each other. “After I had bought the book,” says Bose, “Oak wrote on the title page, next to Hansraj Bhatia’s name, “alias P N Oak.” Then crossing out Bhatia’s description of himself as a “member of Institute for Rewriting Indian History,” Oak wrote “President…” In another book, he was Professor Amarnath, who, like Bhatia, praised Oak and claimed to have been “an engrossed listener of many of his lectures.” This book, Some Missing Chapters of World History, which sought to prove that Hindus too had a world empire, was his seminal work.
For a long time in academic circles, Oak’s nonsense continued to be treated as a joke and was looked down upon with scorn. Yet, says Bose, “…even respected Indian newspapers had not banned his books, but actually reviewed it on their literary pages. Oak even spoke at the Indian History Conference, and for many people in India he remains the true historian.”
However, with the Sanghis having been successful in installing themselves in important posts during the Janata coalition, they made sure that Oak’s nonsense gained recognition and respectability. And for this the Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, Morarji Desai, in 1977, wrote a note to the Education Minister criticizing certain books for what he called ‘defaming’ Indian history. According to Bose, “The note was widely believed to have been inspired by Oak.”
The Janata Party government lasted only two years. Yet during this period, the Sanghis managed to sow the seeds of sectarian hatred with such a great success that the thorny and poisonous bushes have spread all over the country. But in their second reincarnation as the BJP, as soon as they came to power in 2014, they started displaying their fascism more vigorously in a variety of ways. While the foot-soldiers engaged in mob-lynching and sectarian riots, the so-called ‘intellectuals’ concentrated on ‘academic’ work. In 2016, the Minister of Culture formed a committee with the purpose of conducting a ‘Holistic Study of Origin and Evolution of Indian Cultures since 12,000 years before present and its Interface with other Cultures of the World.’
According to a report by Reuters: “The government of Hindu nationalist Prime Minister Narendra Modi had quietly appointed the committee of scholars about six months earlier…Minutes of the meeting, reviewed by Reuters, and interviews with committee members set out its aims: to use evidence such as archaeological finds and DNA to prove that today’s Hindus are directly descended from the land’s first inhabitants many thousands of years ago, and make the case that ancient Hindu scriptures are in fact not myth.” The report further adds, “Interviews with members of the 14-person committee and ministers in Modi’s government suggest the ambitions of Hindu nationalists to extend beyond holding political power in this nation of 1.3 billion people – a kaleidoscope of religions. They want ultimately to shape the national identity to match their religious views, that India is a nation of and for Hindus.”
Superiority complex is actually a reflex form of inferiority complex and an individual or a group of people suffering from both of these pose a great danger not only for those, who are around them but to the whole community and in our case the whole country. The bizarre and ridiculous claims and actions of Hindutvites are the results of these two dangerous psychological disorders. Let’s wait and see what lies ahead.
However, one wonders what to make of Prime Minister Modi’s speech at Delhi’s Vigayan Bhavan in the presence of King of Jordan and the presence of Islamic scholars, who praised him for his speech.
The article first appeared on Urdu Media Monitor.
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