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DU ropes in Sanskrit scholars to reconstruct India's history

Author: Shradha Chettri
Publication: Hindustan Times
Date: February 13, 2015
URL: http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/sanskrit-dept-set-to-rewrite-india-s-history/article1-1316319.aspx

Delhi University’s Sanskrit department will soon embark on an ambitious project to provide a “chronology” to ancient Indian historical text.

The project will be carried out by DU in collaboration with the Indian Council of Historical Research.

Part of the department’s larger ‘Aryan project’, it will attempt to prove through research that Aryans were not invaders who came from Central Asia but people indigenous to India.

Sources said the Sanskrit department will take up the project because it believed that Indian ancient history had so far been primarily read from the perspective provided by historians from outside India.

“If we look at Vedic literature, it has been dated as after 1500 BC, which is questionable and objectionable. This reference has been put as per the chronology given by Max Mueller and other scholars.  But if we refer to other tools like archaeological exhibitions, epigraphy, archaeoastronomical and now genetic mapping, it shows that there was a culture between 2800 BC and 1500 BC. So there has been a false chronology of Indian text,” Professor Ramesh Bhardwaj, head of DU’s Sanskrit department, told HT.

The project will aim to rope in Sanskrit scholars from different parts of the country. Each scholar will get 8-9 months and a literature text. The chronology will be based on examining textual evidence present, utilizing other tools and through elaborate discussion and debate.

The Indian Council of Historical Research will act as a funding agency and help in the compilation of the project.

Once completed, the project would be sent to the Union ministry of human resources development (MHRD) through Indian Council of Historical Research.

“It is just an attempt to make corrections and give history its actual due. It is important that the young generation be able to read history in its true form,” added Bhardwaj.

“In the last 70 years, there have been spectacular researches that have been carried out in this field. But the government is not taking this into account under the influence of the Leftist garb, as it is only the Marxist people who have been creating and writing history. Ancient history needs to be reconstructed,” added Bhardwaj.

Elaborating further, Bhardwaj added that “since the present political scenario was favourable, the ideal time to take up the project would be now.”“We are academics, so we are not going to bring in fundamentalism in the text books. In the present political scenario it is pertinent that we will be able to garner support from the government as well,” he said.
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