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Ayodhya: A Book claims Ram Temple was Destroyed by Aurangzeb not Babur

The book has given a new dimension to the history of Ayodhya and provides a new perspective that is contrary to the common belief

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Babri Masjid Demolition. Image source: newsworldindia.in
  • A book claimed that Ayodhya was under the reign of Aurangzeb, when the Ram temple was demolished
  • The author has tried to establish that a temple did exist at the site in question at Ayodhya by quoting many Sanskrit, English and French scholars
  • Kunal served as an Officer on Special Duty in Ayodhya from 1990 to 1992

NEW DELHI: With Uttar Pradesh polls ahead, once again, the Ayodhya issue is back in spotlight. A new book titled ‘Ayodhya Revisited’ gives a new perspective to the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid controversy. Penned by Kishore Kunal, a former Gujarat cadre IPS officer of 1972 batch, the book claimed that it was under the reign of Aurangzeb not Babur, when the Ram temple was demolished.

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Kunal, who hails from Bihar was the President of Bihar Board of Religious Trusts, said the TOI report. He served as an Officer on Special Duty in Ayodhya from 1990 to 1992 to the then Union home minister and had an insider’s view of the goings-on in the dispute. After retirement, he became the Vice Chancellor of KSD Sanskrit University at Darbhanga.

Kunal said, the book is based on facts and immense research. With references to original sources and after thorough scientific investigation, it propounds a new thesis, which demolishes many popular perceptions like it was Babur who built the mosque in 1528 AD.

Babri Mosque prior to its destruction in 1992. Image Source:soundvision.com

According to the TOI report, Kunal argued that Mughal rulers with the exception of Aurangzeb who was a fanatic, were quite liberal and extended patronage to all religions. “All the Mughal emperors from Babur to Shahjahan were magnanimous and liberal rulers and the Bairagis of Ayodhya enjoyed patronage of the first four nawabs of Awadh.”

Kunal stated that Babar had not visited Ayodhya or ordered demolition of the Ram Janmabhoomi Temple there but rather it was Aurangzeb who did it.

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In another report by HT, Kunal has accused Francis Buchanan, who surveyed Ayodhya in 1813-14, of erroneously crediting the mosque to Babar by drawing upon a ‘spurious inscription’ that contained a ‘fabricated portion’, which read that it was built by Mir Baqi at the command of Babar.

Image Source: ndtv.com
Ayodhya Revisited. A book by Kishore Kunal. Image Source: ndtv.com

Through his book, Kunal has tried to establish that a temple did exist at the site in question at Ayodhya by quoting many Sanskrit, English and French scholars. He has heavily relied upon literary sources of foreign travel accounts and archaeological excavation reports.

G B Patnaik , former Chief Justice of India has written the foreword of the book. He said, the author has given a “new dimension to the history of Ayodhya” that challenges the present view and provides a new perspective that is contrary to the common belief.

Kunal believes that the book will provide an insight to the true history of the issue that has created so much tension in the past and transform the thinking of the people on the matter.

-prepared by Ajay Krishna, an intern at NewsGram. Twitter: @ajkrish14

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Chinese Authorities Put “Separatism” Charges on Mongolian Writer

Chinese government policies, the group said, are "based on deep-seateddiscrimination that characterizes Mongolian pastoralism as 'backward,archaic, unscientific and uncivilized' way of life and advertises the Chinese way of life as 'advanced, civilized and scientific'.

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Ethnic Mongolian historian and author Lhamjab A. Borjigin, 74, who is facing for prosecution for "separatism" and "sabotaging national unity," in undated photo. RFA

Chinese authorities in the northern region of Inner Mongolia have tried an ethnic Mongolian writer in secret on “separatism” charges, a rights group said on Friday.

Lhamjab A. Borjigin, 75, stood trial on April 4 on charges of “separatism” and “sabotaging national unity,” the New York-based Southern Mongolian Human Rights Information Center (SMHRIC) reported.

“The trial started at 9:00 a.m. on April 4 and ended around 12:00 p.m. at the Shiliinhot Municipal People’s Court,” the group quoted a recorded audio message from Lhamjab as saying.

“None of my family members were allowed to attend,” he said. “I was denied the right to bring my lawyer to defend myself.”

A native of Heshigten Banner, a county-like division in Inner Mongolia, and a member of the state-backed Shiliingol League Literary Association, Lhamjab has been a prominent voice in ethnic Mongolian culture in China, as well as documenting the region’s oral history.

He specializes in survivor testimonies of the political violence and social chaos of the Cultural Revolution, publishing his book “China’s Cultural Revolution” in 2006.

Lhamjab said he had refused to speak Chinese during the courtproceedings, and had “reluctantly” been allowed to bring an interpreter into the courtroom.

“It was a typical closed-door trial,” Lhamjab said. “Only eight people, namely three judges, three procurators, myself and my interpreter were present in the small courtroom with the door tightly closed.”

Lhamjab has rejected the charges pending against him, saying that he only wrote the historical truth.

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The authorities began confiscating copies of the book and placed Lhamjab under house arrest on July 11, 2018.
Pixabay

Case directly ordered by regional government

The court has yet to announce its verdict in the case, which was brought under direct orders from the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Regiongovernment, according to Lhamjab.

“When the [prosecutors] accused me of engaging in ‘national separatism,’ ‘sabotaging national unity’ and ‘illegal publication and illegal distribution,’ I defended myself by asking whether those who committed the genocide in [Inner] Mongolia or the ones like myself who talked about this genocide should be considered [to be] ‘sabotaging national unity’,” he said.

“The [prosecutors] candidly told me that it is not up to them,” Lhamjab said. “It was because the Autonomous Region Public Security Bureau and State Security Bureau are pressuring them to prosecute me on these charges.”

Lhamjab said he had maintained his innocence throughout the trial, andrefused to plead guilty to any of the charges.

“I am determined to appeal to the highest court because this is an unjust trial not only against me but also against our entire Southern Mongolians who have been subjected to a series of mass killing and political persecution but are not even allowed to speak of these atrocities.”

For his book, Lhamjab gathered oral testimonies of survivors of violence against ethnic Mongolians during the Cultural Revolution, a task that took him 20 years.

The book accuses the ruling Chinese Communist Party of state-sponsoredgenocide in the region, detailing torture techniques and detentions in a brutal campaign that claimed the lives of at least 27,900 people andimprisoned and tortured 346,000.

Lhamjab published the book unofficially, at his own expense, after state-run Chinese publishing houses refused to publish it.

“The book became popular among Mongolians not only in [Inner]Mongolia, but also in the [neighboring] independent country of Mongolia,” SMHRIC said.

Destroying nomadic civilization

Last year, an abridged audio version of the book went viral among ethnic Mongolians on Chinese social media platforms, especially WeChat, the group said.

The authorities began confiscating copies of the book and placed Lhamjab under house arrest on July 11, 2018.

The writers’ group PEN America has called on Beijing to drop the charges and release Lhamjab.

Ethnic Mongolians in exile have repeatedly also called on Chineseauthorities to end human rights violations, systematic andinstitutionalized discrimination against ethnic Mongolians within China’s borders, as well as longstanding policies aimed at ending their traditional, nomadic way of life.

In a submission to the International Convention on the Elimination ofRacial Discrimination (CERD), which is currently reviewing Beijing’s record, SMHRIC called on the Chinese government to release all ethnic Mongolian prisoners of conscience, including members of herding communities who have been “arbitrarily arrested, detained, and imprisoned for defending their grazing land from illegal appropriation.”

The group is calling for the immediate withdrawal of all “extractiveindustries, tourist companies and power plants that not only occupy and appropriate large tracts of Mongolian grazing lands, but also devastate the ecosystem, deplete the underground water and pollute the air and water.”

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“None of my family members were allowed to attend,” he said. “I was denied the right to bring my lawyer to defend myself.” Pixabay

It is also campaigning against the Chinese authorities’ “massivepropaganda campaign to justify their destruction of nomadic civilization and … the natural environment.”

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Chinese government policies, the group said, are “based on deep-seateddiscrimination that characterizes Mongolian pastoralism as ‘backward,archaic, unscientific and uncivilized’ way of life and advertises the Chinese way of life as ‘advanced, civilized and scientific’.”

The authorities should also prosecute “hate crimes and hate speech byChinese individuals, private or public entities and government bodiesagainst Mongolian language, customs, tradition, way of life and identity,” it said. (RFA)