There are fault lines between the Hindu Muslim ecumenical harmony. No where are the fault lines sharper than in the discussion of the protagonists in Battle of Pratapgarh fought on November 30, 1659. The battle was fought between the Adil Shah’s forces (an ally of the Mughals) and the renegades who were against the state. To say the very least the controversial Shivaji is not considered a person of any high reputation by contemporary historians. Secular Indian consider it just a battle between two armies, however the Hinduvata consider is a battle between Muslims and Hindus.
The statue of Shivaji stands in Mumbai. This is ironic–because Bombay was built by the British after the Port of Surat had silted over. Surats merchants disliked having to bribe and pacify the warrior Shivaji, who looted Surat seven times beginning in 1664. These merchants were moved to Bombay by the British.
It is pedagogical to note that both armies had Hindus and Muslims.
Afzal Khan’s army had many Hindus, and the several able generals of Shivaji were Muslims (Siddi Halal, Siddi Wahwah,Nur Khan Baig, Qazi Haider, Shama Khan etc). This was not a battle between Hindus and Muslims, it is was battle for the integrity of the state–the same battle that raged between Delhi and the South (during the reign of Aurenzeb)–the same battle that rages between Delhi and the Naxals and Tamils today.
Both Aurenzeb and Shiva had both Hindus and Muslims in their army and administration. The battles were not about Muslim or Hindu–it was about power. Shivaji had many Muslims in his military and ministries, and his most trusted general in all his campaigns was Haider Ali Kohari; Darya Sarang was chief of armoury; Ibrahim Khan and Daulat Khan were prominent in the navy; and Siddi Ibrahim was chief of artillery.
Shiva’s son Sambhaji worked for the Mughals.Aurangzeb’s son Muhammad Akbar had joined forces with Sambhaji against the Mughals.
Verily, Islam and Hinduism are terms of contrast. They are used by the true Divine Painter for blending the colours and filling in the outlines. If it is a mosque, the call to prayer is chanted in remembrance of Him. If it is a temple, the bells are rung in yearning for Him alone
Shiva was no great champion of any religion, as he has been reconstructed.
The Kashmiris are waging a Shiva like guerrilla warfare as are the Naxalites, the Mizus, and the Assamese.
From a military strategy, surely Shiva’s harassing tactics cannot be described as “kicking butt”–in typical guerrilla warfare, he would run all over the country being chased by a mighty army. If escaping death is victory–then you need a lesson in history.
Shiva was a terrorist fighting the legitimate government–in the scheme of things, Shiva was an insignificant figure in Aurenzeb’s reign. In the end Shiva’s rule ended pretty dramatically, while Mughal rule lasted for another century and a half (1707-1857).
Shiva died a a total failure. According to Marhatta account he was killed by his second wife, Soyarabai, who had poisoned him so that his crown might pass to her 10-year old son Rajaram. Rajaram, his wife Janki Bai, and mother Soyrabai were imprisoned, and Soyrabai executed on charges of conspiracy
By eulogizing the local insurgent as a hero, the Hindu Mahasabah is in fact encouraging the Naxals to claim that Delhi’s rule is illegal and that it is OK to rebel against the central authority. If Shivijai’s struggle was against invaders, so the Dalit struggle against the Aryan armies of Arjun was also legitimate.
In a secular society the country the rights of the secularists, the minorities and Muslims are being trampled. Building a statue for a controversial figure who now represents opposition to all Muslims will surely exacerbate Hindu-Muslim relations not only in Bharat but on her bloody borders.
Let us look into the seeds of time and see what makes Shivaji such a controversial figure.
New versions of revisionist history are being propagated , but credible historians agree on these facts which are not in dispute.
- Facing a huge Army Shivaji sent a letter saying he was not eager to face Afzal Khan in battle, and he wanted a negotiated settlement.
- Facing imminent defeat by the overwhelming force Shivaji decided to meet Afzal Khan under the guise of diplomatic negotiations.
- Afzal Khan, after leaving Bijapur wanted agreed to meet Shivaji in an open ground without arms and under normal diplomatic norms of peace and honesty.
- Face to face diplomacy was considered a matter of integrity for the Mughals.
- A meeting was arranged between Afzal Khan and Shivaji at the foothills of Fort Pratapgad.
- A wanted criminal, Shivaji was was not greeted with a rainfall of arrows and was not attacked by 25 Adil Shah’s soldiers. He was accorded safe passage.
- Afzal Khan had a large physical stature leading a battle hardened veteran army. He considered this assignment as a small matter of stamping out a pesky regional chieftain who was physically weak and in to position to fight the mighty Adil Shahi Army.
- Shivaji prepared carefully and diligently for this encounter; he secretly armed himself with sharp metal razor weapon called wagh nakh (tiger claw), and chilkhat (armour) prior to the meeting.
- Afzal Khan embraced him before the commencement of supposed negotiations
- During the embrace Shivaji surreptitiously attacked AfzalKhan with the “wagh nakh” and “bich’hwa“, spilling his blood and entrails on the ground.
One of our esteemed Rupee News readers correctly points out the following:
His fight was not for hindu kingdom as painted by hindu fanatics. His most trusted general in all his campaigns was Haider Ali Kohari; Darya Sarang was chief of armory; Ibrahim Khan and Daulat Khan were prominent in the navy; and Siddi Ibrahim was chief of artillery.
One third of his supporter were MUSLIMS & he had pathans support as well after pashtun rebellion against mughal empire due to failed ECONOMIC policy.
Top officials with him include: 1) Siddi Halal, 2) Siddi Wahwah, 3) Nur Khan Baig, 4) Qazi Haider, 5) Shama Khan
The Mughal forces under Shaista Khan (January 1660) who took revenge of the murder of their ally Adil Shah were of course a huge conglomeration of Sikh, Marhatta, Rajput, Hindu, Muslim, and other forces. In fact one of Aurenzeb’s disowned sons who did not succeed in overthrowing the king was part of the Shivaji army.
Aurenzeb had an ecumenical household. He had at least two Hindu wives Nawab Bai, daughter of Kashmir’s Raja Raju, and Udaipuri Mahal.
Percentage of Hindu Nobles Under Shahjahan & Aurangzeb
|5000 and above||24.5%||19.6%||32.9%|
(Source: Athar Ali: Mughal Nobility Under Aurangzeb)–Cited in Chandra, Medieval India, 285.
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The Hinduvata define the incident as such: “Afzal Khan, the general from Bijapur who tried to murder Shivaji. But Shivaji’s wits ensured otherwise; and it was Afzal Khan who was slain by Shivaji Maharaj.”
Because of the RSS activity in the 1940s and as a result of the Hinduvata the lines between the Muslim heroes and the Hindu Heroes were defined not today but hundreds of years ago in the Subcontinent. Quaid e Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah defined it eloquently in the Two Nation Theory (originally defined by Lai and other RSS Hindus) in 40s. He says “your heroes are our enemies, and our enemies are your heroes“. Shivaji is reviled in the civilized world of the time, not because of his religious affiliations but because of his guerrilla tactics of asymmetric warfare which in the middle ages was considered unmanly. As our Indian readers have pointed out the Mughal forces included many Hindus and the forces of Shivaji included many Muslims.
While Shanghai is building skyscrapers, and creating a modern city the envy of the world, Mumbai is busy in creating rift among the Muslims and Hindus. Mumbai is to sport another new symbol of Islamphobia and bigotry–the statue of Shivaji, a guerrilla fighter from the South that harassed Mughal forces by hit and run attacks. Could Muslims return the favor this time?
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Secular India: Anti Muslim Shivaji statue to guard Bombay shores
Map of India showing the highest concentration of Brahmins and Hindu extremists known as Hinduvta who worship Shiviji as an icon of Islamphobic bigotry to promote communal violence in Bharat.
Mumbai to build statue taller than Lady Liberty MUMBAI: Mumbai plans to erect a statue of a Hindu warrior king off the city’s shore in the Arabian Sea that will be taller than the Statue of Liberty, government officials said on Tuesday. India’s financial capital has consciously modelled its development on that of Shanghai, but its leaders admit to sometimes coveting aspects of Western metropolises too. “It is true that the Statue of Liberty was perhaps an inspiration a little bit,” said Thanksy Thekkekara, the principal secretary of the government of Maharashtra, of which Mumbai is the capital. While almost equally massive, the two statues may prove different in their symbolism. Mumbai’s statue will depict Shivaji Bhosle, also known as Chhatrapati Shivaji, revered by many in western India as a warrior who fought the Mughal empire and annexed land from its Muslim rulers in the 17th century. The planned statue is about 309 feet (94m) tall, including its pedestal, Thekkekara said. The Statue of Liberty measures 305 feet (93m) from the ground to the tip of her torch.
We simply state that Shivaji was resisting the government in Hindustan with violent means. His rebellion waged against the Central Authority would be labeled as Terrorism.If he is not a terrorist, then there are no terrorists in Bharat–all of them are resisting the rule of law with bloody and illegal means.
The fact is that Shivaji was a terrorist. He killed a peace emissary with a dagger hidden in his hand–an abominable act of murder of the ambassador. Shivaji should have been unarmed like the Ambassador.
Dr. Khan adds:
Great review on “secular Mughal and secular shiva ji.
Drafting siva as icon of Hindu nationalism,was indeed needed as there was nothing to rally around;This was another British success story.
But unfortunately modern Hindus are radicalized by british created history with an agenda to create mutual hatred; they succeeded.
I am happy to note that you have very clearly showed that Hindu Muslim soldiers had served both sides; this even began when Prithvi raj joined hands with Ghaznavids to repell Ghouri ( 12th cent).Hindus in fact suffer a great ” inferiority complex “and cannot swallow 1000 yrs Muslim domination; writings of Dayanand and viveka nand etc reflects this vividly; Easiest thing for them is to caste out Muslims as foreigners and discover Siva ji, prithivi raj fictions.They get their high from the fabricated history.
Who knows that Mehmood Ghaznzvi’s generals were Hindus too, one was Tilak as elaborated by Nehru and included in my book as well.
Only one thing i will add to your main article; This is a collaboration between SHIA south,sivaji group shia iran and some brtish of surat plus a Rebellous son of
Aurangzeb, Akbar. The alliance finally lost to central govt; Akbar took refuge in Iran and fate of others is well known.Secular Auranzeb, destroyed masids and mandirs both part of army action. Auranzeb had created the largest ever India: Assam, Tibet, etc were annexed by him.
Some people single him out for killing his brothers.There are many such episodes in pre islamic history of India and also all over in all religion; This is lust of power, human issue.
Shiva ji is the only icon of Shiv Sena.he is the only hero they can feel proud.Thus they have their statue, nothing good or bad about it.
Interestingly many commentators still are hung up on 8th grade British created history—Muslims as foreigners even after 1000 yrs. They need to look at historical origin of indians from africa and Babylon and evolution of Hindu culture system from MIDEAST including skt from ancient Arabic (Akkadian). Dr Malati shingde (a Marhatta) elaborates on this besides my own book;” Urdu/hindi an artificial divide, African heritage”.
For history of Siva ji and Aurangzeb, best source is Jadav Nath Sarkar’s Aurangzeb in 5 vols. Indians and Pakistanis need to read some authentic history to get out of box;Your article is one good example that absolves you from India bashing.