Akbar slays Hindu sannyasis

“Whichever side may be slain, Islam is the gainer”

Akbar slaughtering Hindu sannyasis. A miniature from Akbarnama complied c.1590

This miniature depicts Akbar and Mughal army slaying sannaysis who had come to bathe in the sacred place of kurukshetra near Thanesar

This incident happened c.1567 when a group of sannyasis(referred to as puri by Abdul Fazl) had come to bathe at what kurukshetra. Soon, a rival group of Sannyasis(kur) arrived and there was a brawl over the precedence in bathing at the holy tank.

Akbar took sides and soon the Mughal army indulged in massive slaughter of the other Sannyasis to death.

Western Indologist Bonnie C. Wade tries to pass this off as secular incident and praises the ‘authority’ of Akbar in his high handedness. He instead blames the sannyasis for greed1. He says2

This should not be a case of Muslim versus Hindu2

One wonders why  Akbar  engaged in massive slaughter, abdicating his function as guardian of public peace.

The assertions of our dear Indologist bite the dust when contemporary Mughal primary sources are examined. In Tabaqat-I-Akbari  and the reason of Akbar’s behaviour is expounded. He is reported to have said “har tarf shawwad kushta Sud-I-Islam ast” meaning “which ever side may be slain, Islam is the gainer3
In the beginning, Akbar and the Mughals watched the brawl from a distance. When one group began to prevail over other, he took the side of other group and slaughtered them enmasse. Thus, he ensured maximum blood was shed
 

References

1) Bonnie C. Wade, Imaging Sound – An Ethnomusicological Study of Music, Art, & Culture in Mughal India PP.33

2)Ibid pp.33

3) Khandan-i-Timuria 322a;  Khandan-I-Timuria  279; Sarkar, Jadunath History of Aurangzib pp.250

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8 thoughts on “Akbar slays Hindu sannyasis

  1. ..and we crammed for exam akbar was super emperor, so sympathetic. I think stories of Virbal was purposefully created to mask those atrocities of akbar.

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  2. Actually, what most of us know in the name of History is part of what was taught thru State Boards/NCERT books of class VI to VIII.. Rest all life we have been busy ib our own worlds.. So, most citizens today have very limited knowledge of history.. which was never impartially written…There is a need for further research and re-writing of Indian history in correct manner.. Otherwise, we will continue to remember thatTaj Mahal was built by Shah Jahan in love with his wife… Why doesnt Govt permit to open those parts in Taj, where real history has been buried ?

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  3. Akbar who has killed many, as many other stories also high light, for his inhuman nature he can not be called great, but unfortunately historians and politicians presented wrong picture of him to fulfill their greed.

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  4. Still our sanyasis create brawls over shahi snans at Kumbh. In the last kumbh there were tension because Shankaracharyas of four Dhama wanted a sepatate path for their snans. Still there are Congress managed sanyasis who create scenes at behest of Sonia by foyl mouthing Sai .

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  5. Akber the great… indeed! And we were taught in school that he was one of the most liberal ruler amongst Mugal.

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