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Somnath Temple Reconstruction - Lessons for the Present Generation

Gist of the address by Dr Tripuraneni Hanuman Chowdary, Chairman, Pragna Bharathi at the public meeting organized by the Pragna Bharathi on the 5th of Dec 2009 in the Badruka College Auditorium, Kacheguda, Hyderabad

1. General Dwyer had a few score Indians gunned down in the Jallianwala Bagh, Amritsar, assembled to peacefully protest the Simon Commission. Suppose the British built a statue of his for putting down what they called the Indian insurgency. Would independent India allow Gen Dwyer's statue to remain in place or pull it down?

2. Spain was conquered by Arab Muslims in the 8th century and ruled for nearly 700 years. They pulled down every church and converted them into mosques. In the 15th century, a number of European kings together mounted an assault on the Muslim rulers of Spain and drove them out. They pulled down the mosques and restored the churches. More surprisingly, they gave the people a choice either to convert to Christianity or get out of Spain. Most converted back to Christianity.

3. I am recalling this to get a perspective of what happened in Indian history. Persons like Al Beruni who recorded the exploits of Mohammed Ghazni and several other Muslims and writers that came along with the invaders into India, have recorded the exploits of Muslim rulers like Ghazni, who took it upon themselves as decisively ordained by Islam/Prophet Mohammed (PBH) duty to put an end to idol worship. Therefore pulled down many temples. According to their histories, 30,000 Hindu temples were pulled down between 1126 AD and the death of Aurangazeb in 1760 AD. On 3,000 of the very temple sites, there still are mosques! One of them is the Babri "mosque". Other infamous ones are just on a portion of the sites of Krishna's temple in Mathura, and Siva's temple in Varanasi. These mosques were not required as there were hardly any Muslims living in those towns when the temples were destroyed. The conversion of temples into mosques or the construction of mosque on a portion of the temple sites was to demonstrate to Hindus their shame, their helplessness and their impotency against Muslim invaders, conquerors and to permanently impress upon Hindus, the defeated peoples, of the supremacy of an Islamist conquerors.

4. Somnath was the first great Hindu temple that was first destroyed in 1126 AD by Mohammed of Ghazni. In all, it was destroyed four times. Every destruction was followed by reconstruction by Hindus. The last time, it was not only destroyed but also converted into a mosque by Aurangazeb's orders.

5. As soon as India gained independence, the Nawab of Junagadh in whose territory Prabhasa and Dwaraka lay and whose population was 85% Hindu acceded to Pakistan. There was a revolt. The Nawab fled to Pakistan. Then by a referendum, the people of Junagadh ratified the accession of the province to India. Sardar Patel, N.V.Gadgil and K.M.Munshi were Ministers in the Nehru cabinet. They visited Prabhasa and Somnath in October, 1947 and declared that the Government of India has decided to restore and reconstruct the Somnath to its former glory. The Cabinet presided over by Nerhu ratified this decision. Mahatma Gandhi approved this action but instructed that the expenses must be borne by contributions from the public. Sardar Patel died in December, 1950. Thereafter responsibility was completely taken over by Munshi and Gadgil. According to the government's decision, the mosque that was built by Aurangzeb's order on the temple site was removed and relocated a little distance away at government expense. Somnath was rebuilt. The pranaprathista of the Siva linga was done by the president of India Dr Rajendra Prasad. The reconstruction of the Somnath temple, the 5th time, was held and hailed as historic justice to the people of India who had been wronged repeatedly by intolerant invaders and rulers.

6. There was no opposition from any quarter at that time. Why is it that there is so much obstruction and opposition and breast-beating about the pulling down of the Babri structure now? One worthy Muslim intellectual (Tahir Mohammed, former Chairman of the Minorities Commission) called the Babri structure a historic mosque! (Indian Express 30-11-09). What is that history? The history is that an invader, Babur, from Central Asia, conquered a part of India. His General Mir Baqui pulled down the Ram Mandir at Ramjanmasthan in Ayodhya and converted it into a mosque. Can this be called a "historic" mosque? Is it historic because it was built by a foreign conquerer? What for was it built? There could not have been many Muslims in Ayodhya in 1528. Even now there are not many Muslims in Ayodhya; they are many in the nearby town, Fiazabad, 30 km away. Why in 1528 the invading General Baqui build a mosque assuming that it was a new structure in Ayodhya? And that too on a site where a temple existed by pulling down a temple? Assuming for a moment that there was no temple, why was the mosque built adjacent to the place which, for thousands of years, was believed to Ram's Janmasthan? What do parts of the structure show? They are having Hindu motives indicating that something was pulled down and the super-structure only was built as a mosque.

7. More than 60 years ago, this ceased to be a place of worship for Muslims in Ayodhya because a Ram idol came up in that very so called mosque and in order to avoid bloodshed, the idol was not removed. It was locked up for some time and reopened during Rajiv Gandhi's time for worship to Ram. Recent history is familiar to everyone. Every attempt to arrive at a settlement is frustrated by some Muslims and communists and their fellow -travelers and "secularists", raising all sorts of questions like: Did Rama exist ? Was he born in the place called Ram Janmabhoomi ? Was there a temple here? What is the evidence that it was pulled down and so on?

8. The question now is why there was no opposition to the relocation of the mosque and reconstruction of the Somnath temple, during the first few years of our independence? And why is there a strident opposition for restoration of any temple in India, now? Dr Tripuraneni Hanuman Chowdary said that in the initial years of our independence, patriotic spirit and swabhiman were stridently evident. There were no elections in 1947-51 for political parties and leaders to pander to everybody's demands. Since then, we have been having elections in 1947 and years thereafter the Muslim population felt guilty for 98.5% of them voting for the Muslim League and for partition of India in the 1940s. So they did not raise any objection to the restoration of Somnath. Now, their population has increased from 9% to over 15% as a proportion of India's population. The oldest nationalist party is reduced to being one of the parties. It is contested by many regional parties almost all over the country. And almost all parties are competing with one another to get the votes of minorities and therefore the minority has become king-makers deciding the fortunes of the parties. So, every party is appeasing every sentiment of Muslims (and the other minority) now.

9. In the 1940s, communists in India were insurgents. They took to arms to overthrow the Nehru government which they characterized as a running dog of Anglo-American imperialism. India was waging war against them in Telangana, in Malabar, in Bengal and a few other places. So the communists and the fellow-traveling intellectuals had no voice. Indeed, there was a Preventive Detention Act under which they were shut up in jails. But now they have become the allies of Congress, very often holding it to ransom. Indian communists are unique and have an unenviable record of being anti-India always. They supported the Muslim League in their two-nation theory and the partition of India; they opposed the Quit India movement; they waged war against independent India to overthrow Nehru government; one wing of the party said that China was not an aggressor in 1962 on India; one Communist party supported the Emergency declared (in 1975) by Indira Gandhi.

10. No nation which has become independent and has self-respect suffers the impositions by the invaders. Gold Coast became Ghana; Rhodesia became Zimbabwe; Madagascar became Malagasy; Ceylon became Sri Lanka; Burma became Myanmar; Siam became Thailand; Peking became Beijing; Canton became Guanzhou; Stalingrand got its earlier name Volgograd; Leningrad regot its name St. Petersburg. When Poland got independence from Russia, they pulled down the Russian Orthodox church in Warsa and constructed the Polish Catholic church on the very site. All these actions are in the nature of historic justice for the native national people. It is in this light that we have to understand the reconstruction of the Ram temple at the Janmasthan. The belief and faith of Hindus cannot be less valuable less sacrosanct than that of any faith or belief. The opposition and obstruction to construction of Ram temple is reassertion of religious imperialism. Hindus are not asking the reconstruction of the 30,000 temples destroyed; they are not asking for the removal of the 3000 mosques on the very temple structures; they are asking for the restoration of three temples to their three most important divinities, Rama, Siva and Krishna in Ayodhya, Varanasi and Mathura. Just as Duryodhana refuse to part with even a needle-point-sized land for his cousins, Pandavas, the minorities, supported by the vote-begging "secularists" and Marxists, are refusing to respect the sentiments of Hindus for these three places out of 30,000 and are asking for proofs and they are indulging in negationism and falsification of history. As long as this negationism and falsification hold sway, Hindus' heart and mind cannot have peace. In South Africa, in order to bring peace and solace to the wronged black native majority, who all converted to Christianity by the untouchability-imposing minority rule of the whites, after gaining Independence in 1994, Nelson Mandela established a Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) so that the atrocities committed by whichever party are owned up and forgiven by the victims so that a new chapter could be started - after the native majority gained Power. Peru (South America) also established Truth and Reconciliation Commission after the native majority came to power. Nigeria also established one such in an attempt to overcome the Muslim–Christian division in that country. As long as the truths are falsified and history is written in a negationist fashion, there would be strife and the fires of division and differences and riots would be coming up. Wisdom requires that vote bank politics and appeasement should be given up and Truth and Reconciliation Commission must be set up.

11. The meeting was also addressed by Smt. Nandamuri Lakshmi Parvathi, who very vehemently pleaded for the reconstruction of all the temples that have been desecrated, destroyed or converted into mosques. This is historic justice. All political parties must give up appeasement of minority or any other sections of voters. The security, integrity and unity of the people should be uppermost. India with its culture of dharma and universal brotherhood with hatred to none but regard for all must live. Temples should once again become the centers of dissemination of dharma and culture and unity of the land.

12. Sri Pitratla Venkateswarlu, Editor of Krishna Pathrika, recalled the great national spirit and patriotism that characterised our freedom struggle. It was Bharatiya Samskruti, heritage, dharma that inspired people to undergo any amounts of privations. Unfortunately, now there is degeneration because of the hunting for votes. The majority is being divided on the basis of caste, minorities are united by religion. This must stop. There is historic evidence of destruction of mandirs as a policy of Islamist invaders and rulers. He strongly pleaded for the constitution of Truth and Reconciliation Commission as suggested by Dr Tripuraneni Hanuman Chowdary.

Author: Pragna Bharathi, Hyderabad

Source: Secularism Combat 2010 January

Original Title of this Article:

SOMANATHA TEMPLE RECONSTRUCTION - LESSONS FOR THE PRESENT GENERATION

Gist of the address by Dr T.H.Chowdary, Chairman, Pragna Bharathi

at the public meeting organized by the Pragna Bharathi on the 5th of Dec 2009 in the Badruka College Auditorium


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Dr. Tripuraneni Hanuman Chowdary is the editor of two monthly magazines on Indian politics. They are (1) Secularism Combat and (2) Bharatiya Pragna. These magazines are published from Hyderabad, India. Secularism Combat magazine aims to combat the evils of pseudo-secularism, minority appeasement and vote bank politics.

Srimathi Pailla Parijata is the Associate Editor of Secularism Combat magazine.

Visit http://www.drthchowdary.net - the website of Dr. Tripuraneni Hanuman Chowdary.
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Download PDF files of old issues of Secularism Combat and Bharatiya Pragna.

Secularism Combat and Bharatiya Pragna are two monthly magazines on Indian politics, published from Hyderabad, India, whose editor is Dr. Tripuraneni Hanuman Chowdary.

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