"For Modi colonisation began with Muslim rule, not British"
For Prime Minister Narendra Modi, colonisation of India did not begin with the British, but with the Muslim rulers, Congress lawmaker Shashi Tharoor said. He was speaking at the Mountain Echoes Literary Festival in Bhutan's capital Thimpu.
"History has become contestant territory in our country. We have seen this starting with the Ram Janmabhoomi movement which was the first major nationwide effort to essentially take revenge upon history. You can't undo what was done centuries ago and simply create new wrongs and injustices against people who are innocent of the old wrong doings," Tharoor said.
Today battles are about the present and history is being used as a battle axe. When I speak of 200 hundred years of foreign rule, our prime minister speaks of 1,200 years of foreign rule," the lawmaker from Kerala also said.
He further said, "I am talking about the British who came and ruled us for the benefit of a country far away. For the Prime Minister, Muslim rulers who originally came to India to rule but stayed in India, assimilated and intermarried are also considered foreigners. To me they are not foreigners. If they stole and looted, they spent their loot here. They did not send it back to another country like the British."
He said such a hostile political atmosphere in India has made bipartisan efforts practically impossible, citing a personal experience of stitching a bipartisan effort.