Not rewriting history, just ‘filling up gaps’: Dharmendra Pradhan | India News


NEW DELHI: A heated argument in Parliament over the mandate of the Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR) and whether the premier institute is “rewriting” Indian history descended into a political slanging match between Union education minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Congress MP Manish Tewari on Monday.
In a Question Hour reference, Tewari pointed to ICHR’s public statements in which it had claimed it is rewriting history, and the contradictory remarks by the government in its response to a parliamentary question.
“I want to ask the minister about two concepts; one is updation of history, which is a respectable closure concept recognised the world over, the other is rewriting history by a very pernicious and a pretentious concept because this is a process of rediscovery of the current narrative by pinning it on certain historical moorings…. If ICHR is not rewriting history, then what precisely are they doing? …Why is there a contradiction between what you are telling this House and what the ICHR is publicly saying?” Tewari asked. In response, Pradhan retaliated by saying that the government was merely “filling in the gaps” that the previous regime had left open through its failure to acknowledge the great men and women of India. Pradhan cited the instances of Rajasthan’s Mangarh Dham, the sacrifice of Guru Govind Singh’s sons Zorawar and Fateh Singh, which the government began celebrating as ‘Veer Bal Diwas’, and the acknowledgement of Alluri Krishna Raju, to point out “gaps in history” which the previous government had left out.
“There is no plan in the government to rewrite any history…For about 1,100 to 1,200 years, India went through various periods of foreign rule. If we examine the contribution of various parts of the country from those periods, then from the North, South, East and West many regions have contributed to Indian culture and pride. These deserve to find mention in history. Therefore, ICHR does the job of filling the gaps. We are not rewriting history, but expanding the canvas and widening the expanse of history,” Pradhan said.


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