Hindu dharma is implicitly at odds with monotheistic intolerance. What is happening in India is a new historical awakening... Indian intellectuals, who want to be secure in their liberal beliefs, may not understand what is going on. But every other Indian knows precisely what is happening: deep down he knows that a larger response is emerging even if at times this response appears in his eyes to be threatening.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Historian claims Pak history a creation of successive establishments

Islamabad, July 9 : An eminent Pakistani historian has reportedly said that Pakistan history had been "dictated" by successive ruling establishments, and hence it represented their "willful perversion of facts".

He said the country's history was not independent or authentic.

"No authentic history has yet been written about Pakistan and its independence. There is a lot of confusion among the so-called pro-Establishment historians and educationists. Whatever has been written so far is distortion of history and entirely unbalanced," the Dawn quoted Dr Mubarak Ali as saying in an interview.

The nation could not hope to make any real progress unless the distortions were removed and facts told as they existed, he said and added: "This is the lesson history has taught us".

He said: "We project the deeds of our leaders out of proportion and ignore their crimes and blunders. Our modern history is also in a quagmire of confusion as our historians do not know the direction their work should take. They were unmindful of society's need for truth and confused whether Pakistan's history begins from the Indus civilization, or from Mohammad bin Qasim's attack on Sindh or from 1947 the year it was born."

He went to the extent of naming some of the previous historians who wrote history as per the then rulers' wishes. "Historians like Dr Ishtiaq Hussain Qureshi, S.M. Ikram and Moinul Haq wrote history, as dictated by dictators like Gen Ayub Khan, on two premises: the two-nation theory and greater national unity. There writings are more anti-Hindu than about British colonialism. Some historians negated our ancient Indian and South Asian roots and tried to establish our links with Central Asia or with the Middle East which was historical and intellectual dishonesty," said Dr Ali.

Gen Ayub in fact replaced the subject of history in school curriculum with social studies and the history departments of the universities in the country accordingly produced textbooks which contained articles by pro-Establishment writers who excluded the whole ancient South Asian history and blamed the downfall of the Muslim rule on Emperor Akbar, not Aurangzeb, he said.

Asked how the history of Pakistan could be rewritten, Dr Ali said an independent institute should research the regional and small nationalities' history and their role in the anti-colonial struggle "from the perspective of masses, not of rulers". "History is not just compiling and recording past events. Its real work lies in analysing the events," he said, stressing that objective interpretation of past societies and civilisations was important to correct past mistakes and move forward in the right direction.

--- ANI

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