In Canadian actor Akshay Kumar’s crossword model of Indian historical past, ‘Mughal’ is a four-letter phrase. The emergent hatred in direction of India’s most outstanding Muslim rulers is a field workplace assure. However Kumar’s database ends on the Vindhyas. South India got here underneath Islamic rule, ranging from the plundering mass assassin Allauddin Khilji in 1310 to Aurangzeb in 1636.
The Delhi Sultanate conquered the Kakatiyas of Warangal, Yadavas of Devagiri, Hoysalas of Halebidu and the Pandyas of Madurai. No person in Telangana appears indignant sufficient about Tughlaq’s rule to vote for Hindutva. Possibly as a result of Southern wars had been largely internecine, between Muslim rulers themselves, and towards Mughals who coveted rich Deccan. The Mughals briefly bested Shivaji, who was betrayed by Aurangzeb’s Hindu Rajput basic Jai Singh, who humiliated him with the Treaty of Purandar in 1665.
There’s an invisible cultural and geographical polarisation cleaving India’s historic narrative—between the North and the South. India’s rookie cultural commandos like Kumar, Kangana Ranaut and Vivek Agnihotri, pushed by political avarice or ignorance, haven’t made a single movie on ‘South Indian rulers who created empires bigger than, or as giant as King Vikramaditya. True, Prithviraj Chauhan was a brave warrior who finally misplaced his kingdom and his life; no Rajput has ever defeated the Mughals decisively.
Both they perished in battle, or, like rajas Jaswant Singh and Man Singh, grew to become generals, vassals and officers in Islamic imperial administrations. Shivaji had each Hindu mates and foes in Aurangzeb’s courtroom: Kunwar Ram Singh and his father Jai Singh as backers and Maharaja Jaswant Singh as an insecure enemy. Bollywood, missing the brains to unravel India’s advanced previous, is selling Northern cultural adventurism. However the nice Southern heroes, who’re denied a lead function by knowledge-challenged Bollywood, have performed higher roles in navy historical past than any Rajasthani king.
However why is there no Hindi film on the Southern Samurais, the Nairs, whose chaver pada actually means military dedicated to loss of life? Don’t wager on Kumar or Ajay Devgn to star as Rajendra Chola or Jatavarman or Rajaraja Chola whose Tamil imperiums prolonged to overseas lands. The film Padmaavat glorifies sati, with Adityanath competitor Shivraj Singh Chauhan even calling her “India’s mom”; however why is there no Hindi film on the ferocious Tulu queen Rani Abbakka who tormented the Portuguese?
Or on Naiki Devi, Gujarat’s Chalukya queen who defeated Muhammad Ghori—the identical gent whom Prithviraj Chauhan defeated within the first Battle of Tarain? For one Rani Lakshmi Bai, there are Rani Rudrama Devi of Warangal and Rani Chennamma of Kittur. No script has been written on Ahmednagar’s African ruler Malik Ambar whose guerilla techniques towards the Mughals impressed Shivaji. Why is Bollywood disinterested within the nice Marthanda Varma, the nemesis of the Dutch in Malabar? Or in Pazhassi Raja of Travancore who despatched Tipu Sultan’s garrisons packing to Mysore and was finally killed by the British within the Cotiote Warfare?
Martyrdom and glory don’t take pleasure in geographical copyright within the story of liberation. The idli dosa madrasi model of historical past maybe nonetheless prevails in Bollywood regardless of Santosh Sivan and AR Rahman. Bestowing tragic glory on Rajputs, whereas being disdainful of Southern lieges who didn’t compromise their dignity, is a disservice to nationwide pleasure. The hagiography of resistance in textbooks was written lengthy earlier than the BJP got here to energy. Our ruling cultural commissars might wish to appropriate this impartially. Fairness in braveness is not only a North Indian portfolio.