Magh Krishna 11, Vik. Samvat 2071. Yugabda 5116: January 16, 205

5. ARVIND PANAGARIYA IS NITI VICE-CHIEF 6. READY FOR TAKE-OFF - 2015 can be the year when India begins to break out and realise its potential
17. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Pravaas & Visitors   FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Bhagwad Geeta

EXPLORING BRAND NRI (By Prof Guna Magesan)


1. FESTIVALS: Rathasapthami is a festival that falls on the Magh Shukla Saptami (January 26 this year) It marks the seventh day following the Sun’s northerly movement (Uttarayana) of vernal equinox starting from Capricorn (Makara). It is symbolically represented in the form of the Sun God Surya turning his Ratha (Chariot) drawn by seven horses (representing seven colours) towards the northern hemisphere, in a north-easterly direction. The seven horses are also said to represent the seven days of a week starting with Sunday, the day of Sun god Surya.  It also marks the birth of Surya and hence celebrated as Surya Jayanti (the Sun-god’s birthday).

Ratha Saptami is symbolic of the change of season to spring and the start of the harvesting season. For most Bharatiya farmers, it is an auspicious beginning of the New Year. The festival is observed by all Hindus in their houses and also fervently celebrated at Surya temples all across Bharat viz Modhera in Gujrat, Arasavalli in Andhra Pradesh ad Konark Sun temple in Odisha. -goTop


2. THREE-DAY KARYAKARTA SHIVIR IN KARNAVATI: Gujarat unit of the RSS organised a three-day Karyakarta Shivir in Kathwada area of Ahmedabad. The Shivir was inaugurated by the RSS Sahsarkaryavah Shri Suresh Soni on January 2. Around 25,000 swayamsevaks attended the Shivir.

Speaking at the concluding ceremony on January 4 Sarsanghachalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat stressed the need for unity among Hindus. "In India, if the Hindu society gets weak, the entire country would get weak. The country being a Hindu nation it is the responsibility of Hindus to protect it,” he said. He said equal respect has to be accorded to all in the society. If all Hindus get united, there is no power that can stop the country from progressing. He further said that the Sangh is an organisation for nation-building and infusing nationalist spirit among the people. "The Sangh has embarked upon this holy task and we will continue till it is complete," he said. Many sangh adhikaris and veteran laryakatas , those who worked full time in Gujrat attended the shivir. -goTop


3. OPPORTUNITIES NOW PLENTY IN BHARAT, MODI TELLS NRIS: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 8th January lionized Bharat  as a land of opportunities as he reached out to the Bharatiya Diaspora of 25 million, while inaugurating the 13th Pravasi Bharatiya Divas (PBD) in Gandhinagar.

"Our ancestors went to distant lands to explore new possibilities," Modi said while speaking at the PBD venue, the swank Mahatma Mandir which is spread across 60,000 sq m. "Now opportunities await you in India. Times have changed; the world is looking at India with optimism."

Nearly 4,000 delegates attended the PBD - the world's largest annual gathering of people of Bharatiya origin that seeks to enhance networking opportunities and reinforce commercial linkages between Bharat and expats.

President of Guyana Donald R Ramotar; minister of international relations of South Africa, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane; and vice-president of Mauritius Monique Ohsan Bellepeau were the chief guests at the event.

Listing several initiatives like merging of OCI and PIO cards, Modi said that the visa-on-arrival facility has begun for 43 countries. Electronic travel authorization has been activated as well, and NRIs can apply online. He urged the NRI’s to extend their support to the Namami Ganga fund in terms of funds, knowledge, technology & volunteer work." -goTop


4. SPECIAL VISHNU PUJA PERFORMED FOR FIRST TIME IN REUNION ISLAND: While most of the islanders are preparing to celebrate the New Year with family and friends this December 31, the devotees of Narassingua Peroumal temple of Saint-Pierre had organized a special celebration from 29 December 2014 to 1 January 2015, in honor of Bhagwan Vishnu.

By coincidence, the last day of the calendar year coincided with the "Vaikuntha Ekadasi,".  Symbolically, the temple took advantage of this coincidence to invite the faithful from all over the island to cross the threshold of the New Year in prayer. The festivities, from Sunday, December 28, took place over four days with the highlight on the night of December 31. Five priests traveled from Bharat for this special ritual that is a first in the history of this temple. Reunion is an island in Indian ocean east of Madagaskar and South West of Mauritius, where the indentured labourerers from Bharat, mostly from Tamilnadu migrated during the British rule on Bharat. -goTop


5. ARVIND PANAGARIYA IS NITI VICE-CHIEF: The Government on 6th January appointed well-known Bharatiya-American economist Arvind Panagariya as the vice-chairman of National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog. Another economist Bibek Debroy and scientist Dr VK Saraswat have been appointed as the full-time members of the restructured Planning Commission.

The Governing Council of NITI Aayog will include all the Chief Ministers and Lt Governors of States and Union Territories.

NITI Aayog will serve as a think tank of the Government and will provide the Governments at the Centre and in States with strategic and technical advice on key policy matters, including economic issues of national and international importance. The NITI Aayog will also provide a national agenda for the Prime Minister and Chief Ministers, and interact with other national and international think tanks. -goTop


6. READY FOR TAKE-OFF: 2015 can be the year when India begins to break out and realise its potential

To ring in the new year on a note of good cheer, consider this: crude oil prices have plunged 45% relative to where they were this time last year. It’s not just that there’s a glut of oil in the market; commodity prices, in general, are falling — which should benefit a net commodity importer like India. That contributes to the other bit of good news: in January last year, the India story had gone completely off the rails. Let alone foreigners, even Indian businessmen were fleeing India and pursuing greener pastures abroad. But India is grabbing global attention again and could eclipse China in terms of growth rates if it plays its cards right in terms of productivity-enhancing reforms this year.

And many are willing to bet it will. In momentous Lok Sabha elections held in April and May last year India elected, at long last, a stable single-party majority government not dependent on volatile coalition partners and therefore having the capability, at least, to generate consensus on critical issues that’s needed to move forward. We may not have seen much of that on the ground so far despite the pro-growth and pro-business intent expressed by the NDA government. But Prime Minister Narendra Modi has transformed at least the field of foreign policy with whirlwind tours and out-of-the-box initiatives.

This has served the purpose of raising India’s global profile as well as mobilising India’s diaspora on its behalf, strategies similar to those successfully followed by China. Also inflation is trending downwards at long last, which should give RBI room to cut rates. All of this should help break the low-growth rut in which the economy has been stuck for a long time.

Declining oil prices have other beneficial effects easing India’s international environment. For example, they will take the edge off confrontation between Russia and the West over Ukraine. Since Russia depends on oil, President Putin will be forced to negotiate. The Cold War not returning is good news for India, as it doesn’t want to be in a situation where it has to choose between friends. The political class, which likes to wallow in negative sentiment, should realise that tailwinds are behind us and learn habits of greater cooperation. 2015 can be India’s year when it begins to break out and realise its true potential. (Editorial, Times of India January 1, 2015) -goTop


7. CELEBRATING 100 YEARS OF A VEDANTIC CAUSE: Ramakrishna Math celebrated a century of the publication of ‘The Vedanta Kesari’, the monthly of the Ramakrishna Order. This century-old magazine, launched in Chennai has kept its date with subscribers every month without a break.

In its long journey, it has had 16 editors who have overseen 1,179 issues running to 54,853 pages, with 15,246 articles written by 2,351 authors. All the articles are in English, with select ones translated and published in other languages.

The Vedanta Kesari’s 101 digitised archives in DVD format has also been released.

Swami Atmashraddhananda, editor, The Vedanta Kesari, said that Brahmavadin, the monthly started in 1895 in Madras, was the predecessor of The Vedanta Kesari. Swami Vivekananda conceived and founded Brahmavadin (‘the messenger of highest truth’) in September 1895, and it was discontinued in April 1914. The very next month, The Vedanta Kesari (‘lion of vedanta’) was launched. -goTop


8.  ONLINE FACILITY A HIT: 22,000 VISAS ISSUED IN A MONTH: The government's initiative to provide online visas has started with a bang. Bharat had introduced visa on arrival enabled by electronic travel authorization (ETA) on November 27. Since its launch till December 31, the government has processed 22,000 visas indicating a significant boost to tourism. It's at par with the visa on arrival (VoA) issued by Bharat between January-November 2014 which totaled 24,963. This is a 41.9% increase from last year when 17,594 VoAs were issued during the same period in 2013.

Online visa facility is applicable for visitors traveling to Bharat for recreation, short duration medical treatment and casual business visit for a short stay of 30 days.

Opening of the visa regime is expected to be a game changer for the tourism industry. Bharat  was ranked 76th in the visa restrictions index compiled by global residence and citizenship planning firm Henley and Partners earlier this year.

The government has introduced the facility in 43 countries and is available at nine airports.

The other major initiative is developing five tourist circuits: Ganga circuit, Krishna circuit, Buddha circuit, North East circuit and Kerala circuit. The tourism ministry plans to spend Rs 500 crore for developing the areas based on specific themes. The ministry also plans to funnel Rs 100 crore for national mission on pilgrimage rejuvenation and spiritual augmentation drive (PRASAD). -goTop


9. A NEW COIN FOR A NEW BHARAT, FINALLY FEATURING A BUSINESS ICON: The first new coin of the year was released this in first week of January week, by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. It is unique, being the first ever Bharatiya coin commemorating an industrialist. It marks the 175th birth anniversary of Jamsetji Tata, founder of the Tata Group. At a broader level, the coin is an acknowledgment of the role of industry in building our nation.

In modern Bharat , our coins have depicted figures such as Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Sardar Patel, Mother Teresa and Rabindranath Tagore. Yet before this launch, we have never had a coin featuring an icon of business.

Tata was more than just an entrepreneur. He was a nationalist who believed in the overall development of Bharat. The coin highlights what doyens of industry can achieve, if driven by a burning sense of patriotism. The coin also reminds us of Jamsetji Tata’s unwavering commitment to the industrialisation of Bharat. The new coin re-emphasises the need for renewed industrialisation of Bharat, which is today an imperative for future growth. -goTop


10. IN A FIRST, WOMEN OF ARMED FORCES TO MARCH ON R-DAY: The armed forces for the first time will have all-women marching contingents, apart from their regular ones, in the Republic Day parade on the majestic Rajpath this year, which will have US President Barack Obama as the chief guest.

It has been quite a scramble for the Army, Navy and IAF to look for 148 women each - one contingent commander, three platoon commanders and 144 in the marching block - since they still constitute a miniscule minority in the predominantly male environs of the over 13-lakh strong armed forces.

Unlike paramilitary and police forces, the armed forces cannot draw women from other ranks for the parade since they induct them only as officers. Moreover, though women have been allowed to join the armed forces since the early-1990s, they currently number just about 3,000 of the 59,400 officers. The Army has around 1,300 women officers, IAF 1,350 and Navy 350. -goTop


11. EKNATHJI WAS ROLE MODEL FOR THE COUNTRY—MOHAN BHAGWAT:“The late Eknath Ranade with sheer dint of his industriousness, determination, courage, intellect, strength and all inclusive attitude presented the best role model for the countrymen to emulate and follow”, said RSS Sarsanghachalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat.

He was delivering Eknath Ranade Centenary Memorial lecture organised by New English High School Association at Nagpur on December 30 on the topic, “Late Eknathji Ranade—Personality and Work”.

RSS Sarkaryavah Shri Bhaiyaji Joshi, Association President Dr A W Vyavahare and Vivekananda Kendra Regional Coordinatior Shri Vishwas Lapalkar also shared the dais.

Shri Bhagwat said the qualities in Eknath Ranade’s personality were further sharpened and honed properly under the guidance of RSS founder Dr Keshav Baliram Hedgewar and his immediate successor the late MS Golwalkar. Emulating his example and following them in our life would be the best tribute to him, the RSS chief said.

Shri Bhagwat dwelt at length on various aspects of Eknath Ranade’s life as a student at Hislop College, as a swayamsevak, as a Pracarak and as a Sarkaryvah of RSS till he was entrusted with the responsibility of the Memorial in 1962 to highlight the best of his qualities and principles of life.

Eknath ji Ranade was a student of this School and the lecture was organized as a tribute to this founder of Swami Vivekananda Rock Memorial, Kanyakumari and Vivekananda Kendra. -goTop


12. JANAM TV - KOCHI BASED PRODUCTION CENTRE & STUDIO INAUGURATED: The Kochi based studio and production centre of Janam TV has begun functioning officially. The new regional studio has been set up in Aluva. RSS Kerala Prantha Sanghchalak PEB Menon, inaugurated the studio on 11th January by lighting the sacred lamp.

The function was attended by Managing Director of Janam TV P Viswaroopan, COO Rajesh Pillai and other Directors. The regional studio and production centre has embarked on its venture with the most modern technology.

Janam TV, a news based channel with entertainment programmes as well, will be launched shortly. -goTop


13. OVER 40,000 ATTEND RSS DEVGIRI MAHASANGAM: Over 40,000 swayamsevaks in uniform attended a one day conclave, Devgiri Mahasanagam, organized by Devgiri prant of RSS (regions of Marathwada and Khandesh in Maharashtra ) on 12th January at Sambhajinagar – Aurangabad. Sarsanghachalak Dr.Mohan Bhagwat addressed the gathering.  -goTop


14. WORLD RECORD OF LARGEST ASSEMBLY OF JANJATI ARCHERS: The Three-day National Archery Competition organised by the Akhil Bharatiya Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram for Vanvasi youth concluded in Bengaluru on December 28. The meet created world record of ‘largest assembly of tribal archers’.

Speaking at the venue of competition on December 28 Union Minister of State for Sports Sarbanda Sonowal said the tribal youth have to work hard to excel in sports. He welcomed the initiative of the Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram in Vanvasi sports at national level. He assured all out support for the Vanvasi sports.

Rahul Banarjee, Olympian archer said archery is in blood of Vanvasis. The competition was inaugurated on December 26 by Union Minister for Tribal Affairs Shri Jual Oram. Shri Suhas Gopinath, the youngest CEO and entrepreneur of Bengaluru graced the session as Chief Guest. He suggested the youths to realize a dream through sincerity and honesty. A total of 231 archers from 22 State units of Kalyan Ashram participated in the competition.  -goTop


15. NEW EXECUTIVE OF VHP: The Board of Trustees and Management Committee of Vishwa Hindu Parishad met in Hyderabad from December 28 to 29. RSS Sarkaryavah Shri Bhaiyaji Joshi was also present.

The new executive of VHP was declared by Shri Raghav Reddy ( who was also elected as new President ) includes Dr Pravin Togadia as working president, Shri Ashokrao Chaugule as working president (abroad), Shri Champat Rai as general secretary, Shri Dineshchandra as general secretary (organisation) and Shri Vinayak Rao Deshpande as joint general secretary (organisation). Shri Champat Rai then declared Dr Surendra Jain, Swami Vigyanananda, Shri Shyam Gupt and Shri Y Raghavalu as joint general  secretaries. -goTop


16. ‘HAMARE RAJJU BHAIYA’ RELEASED IN DELHI: RSS Sarsanghachalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat released a book on fourth Sarsanghachalak late Prof. Rajendra Singh who was affectionately called Rajju Bhaiyaji, in New Delhi on December 24. The book, ‘Hamare Rajju Bhaiya’, has been published by Prabhat Prakashan, New Delhi. It has been edited jointly by Shri Devendra Swarup Agrawal and Shri Brijkishore Sharma. Former Deputy Prime Minister Shri LK Advani and VHP patron Shri Ashok Singhal were also present. Shri Bhagwat said Rajju Bhaiya was ideal example of simplicity and he knew the art of reading the mind of an individual. VHP patron Shri Ashok Singhal described Rajju Bhaiya as an ideal teacher who had the ability to explain his subject to the students in simplest form. -goTop


17. SHRI VISHWA NIKETAN: Pravaas: Shri Saumitra Gokhale samyojak Vishwa Vibhag reached Bharat to attend ICCS conference and other programs. Dr.Ram Vaidya, sah samyojak would reach Bharat on 27th Jan. Visitors: Ma. Dr. Ved Nanda, Lakshmi Rao and Sunayana – USA, Rishi Kumar – Malaysia -goTop


FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Pleasures conceived in the world of the senses have a beginning and an end and give birth to misery, Arjuna. The wise do not look for happiness in them. But those who overcome the impulses of lust and anger which arise in the body are made whole and live in joy. They find their joy, their rest, and their light completely within themselves. United with the Lord, they attain nirvana in Brahman. – Bhagwad Geeta  -goTop





Prof Guna Magesan

 More than twenty-five million Indians who live outside India. They have spread right across the globe and live in almost all countries of the world. In recent decades, many intelligent and qualified Indians have migrated to western countries for higher education, jobs, and business or to live in comfort.

Overseas Indians are generally well educated, and well settled in spite of innumerable hardships in their early stages. Individually, they have excelled in their chosen field due to their enterprising spirit. Indeed, they have made their mark in every walk of life – trade, industry, politics, academia and arts. As an example, some of the achievers include: Har Gobind Khorana, Subramanyan Chandra-sekhar, Venkatraman Ramakrishnan (Noble Prize winners of Indian origin in overseas countries), Dr Balamurali Ambati (medical doctor), Bhikhu Parikh (political thinker), Gururaj Deshpande (Technologist and Entrepreneur), Prof Jagdish Bhagwati (Economist), Dr Deepak Chopra (prolific writer of New Age books), Jhumpa Lahiri, Anita Desai (Writers), M Night Shyamalan, Mira Nair, Gurinder Chadha (Filmmakers), Sonal Shah, Rajiv Shah, Preet Bharara, Vikram Singh (Advisors to Barrack Obama Administration), Sunita Williams (Astronaut) and many more.

Global Indians have also played an important role in elevating India’s image in the world. They are making enormous contributions to the various communities where they live in. They are the cultural ambassadors of India and have promoted the right perspective of our cultural heritage, inter-cultural understanding, and youth development. Indeed, in many cases, their impact has transcended national boundaries and has been truly global.

Hindus in general, are highly educated, qualified, accomplished community, deeply rooted in their traditional values. They contribute in economy, education, health, science and technology, and culture. Hindus are peace loving, law abiding, co-existing and contributing community throughout the world and they don’t depend on welfare of the Government. But the question is, if our Indians are and have been so successful outside India, why have they not performed equally well in their own country? There may be many reasons of which some are mentioned here:

For many, it is a matter of survival. When someone moves into a new place or country, they have limited resources—finances, friends, community support, etc. To make a mark and also to survive, they tend to work hard and excel in whatever they do be at securing a job, doing business etc. Naturally, they perform better than others in that situation and become successful. Challenges as well as opportunities are plenty outside India, and less visible in India. In overseas countries, business, entrepreneurship are well encouraged and are rewarded from grassroots to Government level. Even if the initial steps are unsuccessful, back-up opportunities to develop further are given with constructive criticism. Government laws and policies also help in being successful creating more business and generating wealth.

Upbringing and pride

When someone grows up in a particular ecosystem, say somewhere in India, with the same education system, with the same people, their thinking is very limited, but when the same person goes to a new place or country, the diversity of the people's thinking cause them to broaden their own thinking allowing them to overcome many obstacles.

Due to high population and high competition in India, parents generally enforce their children to do extremely well in studies either in school or university. From young age, Indian children are trained and emphasised that they can live comfortably only if they have great achievements in life.

They are trained to be competitive. So by default compared to other communities Indians achieve well and become successful. When Indians leave their villages or towns to reach overseas, they want to return successfully after achieving something to show to their people. They do not want to go back unsuccessful or empty handed. The aim of achieving high is itself a driving force. Also there is societal pressure.

Creating good working conditions in India and reversing the brain drain

Many intelligent, successful people are leaving India, because it is easier to be successful elsewhere. Such achievement is possible in India provided there are transparent working rules/laws so that there is no hindrance to development, growth and investment. Working conditions should be friendly and conducive. Similarly there should be fair hours for work with fair pay. Infrastructure to make efficient work happen is also a need. Corruption/ bribery is common in India and for any approval, there is a common complain that the files do not move unless the people are bribed in offices.

Indians were highly successful in the past in whatever they did. That success needs to be analysed. Many Indians from outside India want to return and live provided conditions and environment is conducive for contribution in terms of education, living, work, business etc.

Can we realise Make in India without making India a Man Making Nation?

With the support of Sangh Parivar organisations and other Hindu organisations, children born and brought up in overseas countries, spend reasonable time in understanding our traditions, cultural heritage, and our Hindu way of life. Public educational programmes such as conferences, seminars and workshops are organised to benefit young Indians. Similarly, such programmes need to be organised in India. Sangh-inspired organisations need form alliances with other like-minded Hindu organisations to develop a strong, vibrant and assertive

Hindu society. Param Poojaneeya Guruji had correctly said “Our brethren abroad will have to bring about a total transformation in the thoughts and life styles if they have to lead a happier, richer and more honoured life abroad and also make the image of India shine brighter in those countries”. Once that happens outside India, it will be followed in India. (The writer is the CEO of World Hindu Economic Forum, Organizer January 5, 2015) -goTop



Michel Danino

The Indian History Congress (IHC) recently held at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi passed a unanimous resolution condemning “historical distortions” promoted by the ruling party at the Centre or its associates. Several articles that appeared online and in the print media (for instance, The Hindu of December 31) have reported criticism of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent mention of Ganesha’s head transplant as proof of advanced surgical expertise in ancient India.

It is hard to decide whether Mr. Modi expected his listeners to take his pronouncement literally or as a metaphor, but it remains true that a number of publications and websites abound in grotesque claims: ancient Indians manufactured advanced aircraft, while Vedic rishis went about in automobiles and knew all about the heliocentric system, nuclear weapons and the Theory of Relativity.

But is our job done when we have righteously condemned such childish daydreaming and conflated all “historical distortions” with it? I take the view that the kind of historiography that the authors of the IHC resolution represent is, partly at least, responsible for this situation. Most mainstream history books on classical India, such as D.N. Jha’s Ancient India (revised edition 1998) or Romila Thapar’sPenguin History of Early India: From the Origins to AD 1300 (2003), are almost completely silent on Indian scientific achievements. Professor Jha does briefly mention Aryabhata (whom he has clearly not read, as all his statements about him are factually wrong) and Varahamihira, but not once Brahmagupta or Bhaskaracharya, classical India’s finest mathematicians, or their many peers from Bhaskara I to Sridhara, Mahavira or Narayana Pandita. Curiously, Professor Thapar also limits her discussion of Indian science to a couple of paragraphs on Aryabhata and Varahamihira, conveying little of the former’s real breakthroughs. Examples could easily be multiplied. A recent exception is Upinder Singh’s History of Ancient and Early Medieval India (2009), which devotes over five pages to a more substantial treatment of scientific and medical advances, including Sushruta’s surgical techniques to reconstruct a severed nose or ear lobe and remove a cataract or bladder stones — admittedly better examples of surgical skills than Ganesha’s head transplant. That is indeed the whole point: if our history books did justice to genuine, well-documented and well-studied scientific and technological accomplishments, there would be no room left for the fantasisers. And it is not just mathematics, astronomy or medicine that have been blanked out by mainstream Indian historiography: chemistry, metallurgy, agricultural and veterinary science, water management and irrigation techniques, textile manufacture and dyeing, construction and transport technologies, perfumery and cosmetics, numerous crafts, and a few intriguing technologies from ice- making to weather prediction and water divining, are all equally worthy of study. They are part of India’s considerable heritage of indigenous knowledge systems, beside an equally extensive intellectual field ranging from grammar, prosody, philosophy and logic to literature, plastic and performing arts.

Any study of classical Egypt, Greece or China would naturally include accomplishments in all those fields, so why are most of our Indian historians so shy of dealing with them? I believe plain ignorance of India’s traditional knowledge systems is one factor; this attitude is largely a subconscious relic of the colonial era, which had decreed that India’s literatures were vehicles of superstition rather than of any genuine knowledge. As a result, most scholars prefer to confine themselves to an overview of literature and the arts. Yet scientific and technological advances are of equal importance; ironically, we owe the first studies of them to a few fine European scholars of the 18th and 19th centuries, such as Jean-Sylvain Bailly, Henry Thomas Colebrooke, G. Thibaut or Léon Rodet.

Indian scholars followed with major contributions, but Independent India did little to promote the field: no Indian university has a department of history of science. Search the Internet for a substantial resource on past Indian mathematicians and you will soon reach the website of Scotland’s University of St. Andrews. Indeed, scholars from the U.S., France, Japan or New Zealand have in recent years contributed important studies to the field. On the other hand, most of their Indian colleagues — thankfully there have been quite a few and of a very high order — have worked with little or no institutional support. It is hard to understand why our educational system and intellectual circles have failed to realise the importance of history of science as a full-fledged academic discipline. And a very enriching one, too, for it deals not just with the evolution of scientific ideas but with the interface between many civilisations and cultures.

This lacuna is what needs to be addressed. The historians behind the recent IHC petition should realise that some of the blame for the distortions they object to lies at their own door. Their resolution is titled “In Defence of Scientific Method in History,” but what is “scientific” about suppressing the genuine achievements of Indian science? If our students had substantial exposure to them, they would feel no need to let their imagination run wild. (Michel Danino, author of books on ancient India, is guest professor at Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar. The Hindu, January 4, 2015 -goTop

No comments: