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Debate about supremacy

Few days back, while inaugurating a statue of the Mewar king Maharana Pratap the Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said that Indian textbooks haven’t been able to fully recognize Maharana Pratap’s contribution and significance in India’s history. “If Akbar can be called ‘Akbar the Great’ for his contribution, then why can’t Maharana Pratap be recognised as ‘Maharana Pratap the Great?”

Mr. Singh appreciated the Rajasthan government’s decision to include a chapter on historical figure Maharana Pratap in school textbooks and said he would urge the HRD minister to consider such inclusion in CBSE syllabus so that his patriotism could be introduced in CBSE syllabus too. He said the Centre has decided to celebrate the 475th birth anniversary of Maharana Pratap, the 16th century Rajput ruler of Mewar, all over the country in a big way and a committee has been formed for the same at the central level.

He said Maharana Pratap was a true national hero who bravely and fearlessly fought to defend his motherland. Not only did the Rajput ruler inspire Indians but his name also became a source of inspiration for people in other countries like Vietnam. Maharana Pratap became an icon for freedom fighters because his name evoked a strong feeling of love and sacrifice for his motherland. Even the Vietnamese people were inspired by him and it helped them in defeating a powerful country United States during US-Vietnam war. This fact was shared by the Vietnam president and its former foreign minister had also visited Udaipur to pay homage to Maharana Pratap.

Before the Partition of India in 1947, 562 of Princely States, also called Native States, existed which were not part of British India. These were the parts of the Indian Subcontinent which had not been conquered or annexed by the British but were subject to subsidiary alliances. By the end of 1949, all of the states except Sikkim had chosen to accede to one of the newly independent states of India or Pakistan (East and West) or else had been conquered and annexed.

Alone in Rajputana there were 22 states and Mewar was one of them. Maharana Pratap was the king and ruler of Mewar kingdom and he never fought for “India” then how can we put him and Akbar on the same page? It was Mughals who conquered and annexed such princely states and formed ‘United India’ and fought and died for India. Mughals gave the title of “Mallika-i-Hindostan” to their wife. Before Mughal reign such award and recognization for King’s wife is not available in the Indian history. Before British regime Mughals ruled over India and before Mughals Indian subcontinent was divided into number of states. They fought against each other to show their strength and superiority for their own state and not for India.

Naiyar Imam

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