Why Pakistan textbooks should include Ranjit Singh

Discussion in 'Pakistan' started by Galaxy, Oct 15, 2011.

  1. Galaxy

    Galaxy Elite Member Elite Member

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    Why Pakistan textbooks should include Ranjit Singh

    Senator Raza Rabbani’s recent assertion that teaching students about Ranjit or Bhagat Singh would not harm Pakistan should be warmly welcomed. Altering a country’s history to serve its interests is a common practice in the world. But in our case, we have taken it to a whole new level. Our history books, which are meant to shape the worldview and mindset of future generations, are currently only a tool to indoctrinate the impressionable minds of the younger generation.

    The history of Pakistan, as told in these textbooks, is nothing more than a history of Muslims in the Indian subcontinent. The books exalt Muslim rulers of the subcontinent, depicting them to be epitome of righteousness with the sole agenda to spread Islam, even though all of them were invaders with an expansionist agenda. They vilify all local non-Muslim rulers as having an inherent hatred towards Islam, even though they might have been simply fighting an oppressor or invader. The names of the non-Muslim rulers are never mentioned. That’s why the books are replete with the names of the Ghaznavis, Tughlaqs and Mughals, even though they were invaders, but the likes of Ranjit Singh fail to earn a mention even though they were sons of the soil.

    May I ask our writers of history that if Mehmud Ghaznavi was such a great preacher of religion, as most textbooks portray him to be, why did he go on killing and destructive sprees against, for example, the Muslim rulers of Multan? And what should one make of the fact that he killed his own brother to capture the throne? Or that why did he have to attack the subcontinent 17 times? What was the motive for him invading places like Mathura, Kannauj and Kalinjar, known primarily for the treasures found in their Hindu temples? Was it not to ransack them and take away their riches?

    The Ghaznavids were succeeded by Shahabuddin Ghauri. Ghauri is famous for challenging the Hindu king Prithvi Raj Chauhan, at the start of the Battle of Tarain in 1192, to either convert to Islam or be crushed. If spreading Islam was his agenda, one wonders what about the war he waged against the last Ghaznavid king, Malik Khusro? Why are our history books silent on this?

    Such textbooks have contributed to a skewed and prejudiced understanding of history, and created a sense of fear in many of us of all that is non-Islamic. This fear then creates a mindset of the average Pakistan, steeped in paranoia and a sharply anti-West worldview. This also creates a superiority complex among many of us, in that we consider ourselves and our faith the best, and denigrate that of others.

    We forget that our land has given birth to and helped nurture major world religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Sikhism, so it’s about time we embrace our history in its entirety and learn from it. Maybe that will help induce much required tolerance in us.

    In the end, I would narrate a story that I have grown up hearing as a member of Lahore’s historical Fakir family. The rulers of Afghanistan never reconciled with the fact that Peshawar had slipped out of their hands and went to Ranjit Singh. When Dost Mohammed Khan attacked Peshawar in 1834 to regain it, Ranjit Singh sent Fakir Azizuddin, his prime minister, for negotiations. When the Fakir reached his camp and talks started, the courtiers gave it a religious bend and he was taunted severely for his allegiance to a non-Muslim. Shrewd that the Fakir was, he asked all present that being a good Muslim, wasn’t it his moral duty to loyally serve his king? The aggressors who were in no mood to let go, cleverly started alluding to the massive bloodshed of Muslims on both sides if the war ensued. The Fakir took a pause and asked Dost Khan that if he convinced Ranjit Singh to give Peshawar back to him, would he return peacefully? The answer was a resounding ‘yes’. And then the Fakir retorted: “Don’t brand your campaign Islamic, it’s a fight for a piece of land.”

    Published in The Express Tribune, October 15th, 2011.
     
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  3. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    ‘Teaching students about Ranjeet or Bhagat Singh would not harm Pakistan’



    Teaching students about Ranjeet or Bhagat Singh would not harm Pakistan in any way. A distorted version of history is no longer relevant in the post 18th amendment era.

    This was said by Senator Raza Rabbani, the architect of the 18th constitutional amendment, on Friday at the roundtable workshop titled “Education in Federally Organised Countries”. The workshop was organised by the Centre for Civic Education Pakistan (CCEP) and the Forum of Federations in collaboration with German Foreign Office.

    He blamed the establishment and “some elements within the ruling elite” of trying to circumvent the devolution process.

    In an hour-long speech, the senator spoke out his heart, saying the implementation commission faced a strong opposition from several quarters in the second phase of the devolution of ministries to the provinces.

    Senator Rabbani spoke of a “dangerous trend” that may rollback spirit of the 18th constitutional amendment, which, he warned, would be detrimental to Pakistan.

    Referring to a recently-held national conference on syllabi and curriculum, he said the federal government or the Planning Commission had no constitutional or legal authority to organise such a conference after the 18th amendment that empowered provinces to exclusively deal with the issue of syllabi and curriculum.

    “We must ensure the rollback is stopped. You have the political history of state suppression, state disappearances, state murder and torture. You have the history where the provinces were denied the rights to promote their languages,” Senator Rabbani said.

    He deplored the fact that several people with centrist mindset strongly opposed the process of devolution and provincial autonomy which is a blatant attempt to violate the constitution. “Don’t forget there was a huge trust-deficit between the provinces and the centre which still persists.”

    “Pakistan was created to become a welfare state, but the purpose was changed and the country became a garrison and national security state,” he said.

    Eminent educationalists, senior education officers, chairmen textbook boards, vice-chancellors of major universities from the four federating units and Islamabad, and research scholars attended the conference.
    In favour of a decentralised setup

    Earlier on Thursday, Supreme Court Bar Association President Asma Jahangir, speaking at a CCEP conference on world democracy day, said political parties are national assets. “I don’t say the political parties are perfect. There are a lot of faults. [But] it doesn’t mean we eliminate them. We must raise our voice for the reforms of political parties.”

    Dr Jaffar Ahmed of Karachi University talked about the post 18th amendment scenario and rejected the arguments that the decentralisation would undermine Pakistan’s sovereignty.

    “Why do we think that provinces would act against the country? Why we consider the provinces are anti-Pakistan? Pakistan was created by the provinces,” he argued.

    Renowned journalist Iftikhar Ahmed said the military dictators always claimed to get rid of corrupt politicians, but instead promoted moral and financial corruption.

    Dr Khadim Hussain, Managing Director of Baacha Khan Trust Education Foundation, said the 1973 Constitution reflects the aspirations of the people and a “collective will” is required to uphold its supremacy.

    Eminent analyst and journalist Raza Rumi said it was important to cultivate the relations between citizens and the Constitution in order to progress as a democracy.


    ‘Teaching students about Ranjeet or Bhagat Singh would not harm Pakistan’ – The Express Tribune
     
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  4. A chauhan

    A chauhan "अहिंसा परमो धर्मः धर्म हिंसा तथैव च: l" Senior Member

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    Interesting ! do such people exist in Pakistan who have read the real genuine un-forged History :nod:, And what about the religious persecutions they did on Hindus ? and what about Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj who brought back the Hindu rule just before the arrival of British ? !!

    If properly taught Pakistan may rise as a good country but it is highly impossible because they can't accept that Hindus were innocent and Muslims were invaders who looted, raped, killed Hindus; even if they accept it they will take it as their duty to spread Islam by love or by war :pound: in other words that country will always remain Islamic state full of extremist idiots.
     
  5. Rahul Singh

    Rahul Singh Senior Member Senior Member

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    If added, then what will happen to foundation of Islamic Republic of Pakistan?
     
  6. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    I agree. Very good article. Yes, many in Pakistan want to ignore Hindu Kings and their contributions. My question is, don't some amongst us think the same way? Look at the quote below:


     
  7. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    Let's first include Ranjit Singh in Indian history books, most of Sikh history is missing
     
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  8. Tronic

    Tronic Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    pmaitra, these folks exist on both sides of the border, only difference is, in Pakistan these deluded chaps took power soon after independence where else India managed to keep them out of power and engrave a socialist mindset.
     
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  9. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    I think this is a blow back due to the over glorification of Mughal Empire and making the Sikhs and Marathas as mere footnotes
     
  10. Galaxy

    Galaxy Elite Member Elite Member

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    I think people have missed the irony of the title. It's about Pakistan ignorance of Kings/ruler of Indian religions. Title is not exactly what writer want to convey.

    In India, everyone knows about Ranjit Singh and appreciate him. We do read about him and aware of him. No one has any smallest issue with that. I like Shivaji, Ranjit Singh and Ashoka but I hate Akbar.

    Only thing is Ranjit Singh era is most recent around early 18th Century also when British came also located to Punjab only. Still, everyone give equal due respect across the country. Many people know about Ranjit singh and may not know many Kings/rulers like Cholas. So, Saying that Ranjit Singh is ignored is highly absurd.

    Issue is with people like Akbar, Tipu Sultan. Many people hate them because of Invasion and Killing and mass conversation in Millions. Many people consider that age as Dark age and they will continue to do so. If that didn't happened many things would not be same today. It's as simple as this. It's been long debated in another thread.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2011
  11. Illusive

    Illusive Senior Member Senior Member

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    I think that depends on the region or state you live. Maharashtra state board history taught us lot about Shivaji, depends on textbooks too. I think it was sixth std where we had a lot about Shivaji maharaj and then mughals too. Then as we progress to different class, British rule in India. Then by 10th it was about European History and world wars.
     
  12. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    CBSE, I only studied CBSE board.
     
  13. agentperry

    agentperry Senior Member Senior Member

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    pakistani textbooks??? so they weren't comics!!! gosh......
     
  14. SpArK

    SpArK SORCERER Senior Member

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    Well ...they will change the name of Ranjit Singh to Rashid syed or something similar and move on ..:cb:
     
  15. Adux

    Adux Senior Member Senior Member

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    I cant believe people are trying to reason with a population and culture affected with Stockholm syndrome.
     
  16. Tronic

    Tronic Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Even Rashid Syed would be fine, because the Pakistanis are so much subserviant to foreign invaders that they don't even give recognition to brave Muslim Punjabi warriors like Abdullah Bhatti just because he fought against the Mughals.
     
  17. civfanatic

    civfanatic Retired Moderator

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    They don't talk about the greatest of Mughals either. Akbar is degraded as a 'munafiq' just because he respected other beliefs.

    Pakis have such a severe identity crisis it's not even funny.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2011

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