Negationism usually means the denial of the Nazi genocide of the Jews and Gypsies in World War 2. Less well-known is that India has its own brand of negationism. A section of the Indian intelligentsia is still trying to erase from the Hindus' memory the history of their persecution by the swordsmen of Islam. The number of victims of this persecution surpasses that of the Nazi crimes. The Islamic campaign to wipe out Paganism could not be equally thorough, but it has continued for centuries without any moral doubts arising in the minds of the persecutors and their chroniclers. The Islamic reports on the massacres of Hindus, destruction of Hindu temples, the abduction of Hindu women and forced conversions, invariably express great glee and pride. They leave no doubt that the destruction of Paganism by every means, was considered the God-ordained duty of the Moslem community. Yet, today many Indian historians, journalists and politicians, deny that there ever was a Hindu-Moslem conflict. They shamelessly rewrite history and conjure up centuries of Hindu-Moslem amity; now a growing section of the public in India and the West only knows their negationist version of history. It is not a pleasant task to rudely shake people out of their delusions, especially if these have been wilfully created; but this essay does just that.

This essay was started as an expanded translation of a Dutch-language book review of Sitaram Goel's Hindu Temples: What Happened To Them, which could not be published in its original form due to pro-Islamic pressure; and of an article on Islamic negationism published in the Septemeber 1992 issue of the Flemish monthly Nucleus.

The author:

Koenraad Elst (Leuven, 1959) grew up in the Catholic community in Belgium. He was active for some years in what is known as the New Age movement, before studying at the famed Catholic University of Leuven (KUL). He graduated in Chinese Studies, Indo-Iranian Studies and Philosophy. He took courses in Indian philosophy at the Benares Hindu University (BHU) and interviewed many Indian leaders and thinkers during his stay in India between 1988 and 1992. He has published in Dutch about language policy issues, contemporary politics, history of science and Oriental Philosophies; in English about the Ayodhya Issue, and about the General Religio-political Situation in India.

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