Between Facts and Fabrications
Of all the Muslim rulers who ruled vast territories of India from 712 to 1857 CE, probably no one received as much condemnation from Western and few of the Indian writers as Aurangzeb did. He has been castigated as a Muslim who was anti-Hindu, who taxed them, who tried to convert them, who discriminated against them in awarding high administrative positions, and who interfered in their religious matters. This view has been heavily promoted in the government approved textbooks in schools and colleges across India. These are fabrications against one of the best rulers of India who was good, learned, fair, open minded and visionary. Fortunately, in recent years few Hindu historians have come out in open disputes to those condemnations. For example, historian Babu Nagendranath Banerjee rejected the accusation of forced conversion of Hindus by Muslim rulers by stating that, if that was their intention then in India today there would not be nearly four times as many Hindus compared to Muslims, despite the fact that Muslims had ruled for a nearly thousand years. He further says by reasoning that if Aurangzeb was truly a bigotry or an anti-Hindu ruler, how could he appoint a Hindu as his military commander-in-chief? Surely, he could have rather, appointed a Muslim general in that position. Banerjee further stated: “No one should accuse Aurangzeb of being communal minded. In his administration, the state policy was formulated by Hindus. Two Hindus held the highest position in the State Treasury. Some prejudiced Muslims even questioned his decision to appoint non-Muslims to such high offices. The Emperor refuted that by stating that he had been following the dictates of the Shariah (Islamic Law) which demands appointing right persons in right positions.” During Aurangzeb’s long reign of fifty years, many Hindus, notably Jaswant Singh, Raja Rajrup, Kabir Singh, Arghanath Singh, Prem Dev Singh, Dilip Roy, and Rasik Lal Crory, held very high administrative positions. Two of the highest ranked generals in Aurangzeb’s administration, Jaswant Singh and Jaya Singh were Hindus”.