JAUNPUR: Mughal emperors were not our ancestors but looters and the Uttar Pradesh government would change the syllabus accordingly to reflect this, said Deputy Chief Minister Dinesh Sharma today.
The minister, however, made an exception for the last Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar who he said was a “good ruler” as he had supported Mangal Pandey during the 1857 struggle for independence.
“Mughal rulers were not our ancestors but looters. We consider Mughal rulers who did wrong acts as looters. Those who have done good work, we praise. Babar and Aurangzeb were looters. We do not oppose Bahadur Shah Zafar as he extended support to Mangal Pandey,” Sharma told reporters in Jaunpur.
He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited his mausoleum in Yangon because he was a “good ruler”.
The deputy chief minister, who was on a private visit to Jaunpur, added, “We honour all religions. Apart from worshipping gods and goddesses, I also visit mazaars, gurudwaras and churches.”
He said the government planned to bring “necessary changes” in the school syllabus.
“If Akbar had done any good work, it will remain in pages of history. It will be historians who will decide what place Akbar gets,” he said.
“A culture where a son kills his father for the throne or the hands of Taj Mahal builder are chopped off cannot be our culture. Our culture honours artistes and scientists. Dr APJ Abdul Kalam is credited for the successful nuclear test, and we honoured him”, Sharma added.
Hindustan Times reported, “Till now Europeans, Turks, Moghuls, French, Chinese and Communists have written Indian history but now the things have changed. A panel of historians will be formed to rewrite history as most of the Indian greats have been shown in a poor light in the past”, the minister said.
Claiming that icons like Guru Teg Bahadur, Maharana Pratap, Guru Govind Singh and Shivaji, were shown as dacoits in textbooks, he said such things would be changed.
“We must learn to respect our ancestors. We do not carry the legacy of invaders but we carry the legacy of Lord Ram, Krishna, Guru Nanak, Mahavir, Gautam Buddha , Guru Govind Singh and Shivaji. We will have to study more about them, not about invaders,” he added.
This is not the first incident of rewriting the history, earlier Rajasthan University in June included in its syllabus a book claiming Maharana Pratap defeated emperor Akbar in the Battle of Haldighati.
Maharashtra State board has revised history textbooks for classes VII and IX, removing almost all traces of the rule of the Mughals and the monuments they built and reduced the Mughal emperor’s reign to just three lines, instead now focusing on the Maratha Empire founded by Shivaji.