New Delhi (India): Calling Mughal prince Dara Shikoh an epitome of Indianness, senior RSS functionary Krishna Gopal said on Wednesday that had he been the emperor in place of Aurangzeb, Islam could have flourished more in India.
Speaking at a symposium on ‘Dara Shikoh: A hero of the Indian syncretist traditions,’ Gopal also said that Dara Shikoh, the eldest son of Mughal emperor Shah Jahan, was a ‘real Hindustani’ who never compromised with Islam and always tried to unite the society.
The RSS leader also urged the Muslim community to follow Dara Shikoh’s legacy rather complaining that there was an atmosphere of fear in country.
“Dara was a prince, who translated Upnishads into Persian. He discussed and debated it with intellectuals. He knew the God was only one and there were different faiths to find him. Dara was never divisive. He understood the assimilative power of society and tried to establish compatibility while remaining a true Muslim,” he said.
Gopal said Shah Jahan had understood the capability of Dara Shikoh that it was he who could take the country ahead and prepared ground for him for succession but his only mistake was that he translated Upanishads to Persian, which the then fundamentalists didn’t accept.
“Not to hate anyone had been India’s tradition and Dara followed it. He was an epitome of Indianness,” he said.
Gopal said that Dara Shikoh was a man of the Indian syncretist tradition whom Aurangzeb saw as a threat to Islam.
“But I can tell you with confidence that had Dara been the Mughal emperor in place of Aurangzeb, the Islam could have flourished more in India,” he said.
Gopal, the Joint General Secretary of RSS, said Dara Shikoh wanted a society in which Hindus adopt good things from Islam and Muslims follow good things of Hinduism.
However, he added that divisive politics is continuing and urged the Muslim community to follow the legacy of Dara Shikoh.
Why Muslims live in fear?
“There are around 50,000 Parsis, some 45 lakh Jains and some 80 lakh Baudhs. They never said they are in fear. Muslims, who are around 16-17 crore, say they are living in an atmosphere of fear. Why this? They are in fear despite ruling the country for 600 years. Why don’t you come out from this fear,” he said.
Referring to the Parsi community, he said they are few in numbers but mingled with society the way sugar mingles in milk.
Gopal said after reading books of Dara Shikoh, he was very much impressed with him and urged the audience to read him.
“You will find him as a Muslim who was a true Hindustani. He always wanted to reduce the gaps in the society,” he said.
Union Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi hailed Dara Shikoh as an identity of nationalism and said he was a victim of the brutality of fanatics influenced by Aurangzeb’s thinking.
He also hit out at historians for not presenting Dara Shikoh in good light and said the Mughal prince was the victim of a planned conspiracy by some historians.
The event organised by Academics for Nation was attended by several leaders and academicians.
The event comes days after RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat met Jamiat leader Maulana Arshad Madani in Delhi. The one-and-a-half-hour long meeting discussed the Hindu-Muslim unity.