MODHERA TEMPLE ROW: Rajputs Turn Heat on Gujarat Govt

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Earlier, the Gujjars had declared erstwhile emperor Prithviraj Chauhan as the hero from their lineage and had even warned that the film’s release will be stalled if he is referred to as Rajput in the movie…reports Archana Sharma

The controversy that started surrounding the upcoming Bollywood movie ‘Prithviraj’ starring Akshay Kumar refuses to die in Rajasthan.

Taking forward the row over the lineage and caste of Prithviraj Chauhan, Rajput leaders have now targeted the Gujarat government for giving credit to Gujjar leaders for building the Modhera Sun Temple, which as per them, was built by Rajput royals.

Earlier, the Gujjars had declared erstwhile emperor Prithviraj Chauhan as the hero from their lineage and had even warned that the film’s release will be stalled if he is referred to as Rajput in the movie.

Meanwhile, the Rajputs rejected the claims and declared that Gujjars are trying to twist history.

At a press conference organised in Jaipur on Sunday, Mahavir Singh Sarwadi, the convener of Shri Pratap Foundation and the patron of Shri Kshatra Purusharth Foundation, said that a conspiracy is going on to declare national heroes like Mihirbhoj, Prithviraj Chauhan, Maharaja Anangpal etc. as Gujjars by connecting the Gurjar region with the Gujjar caste.

“The Gujarat government’s tourism department, which earlier said that the Modhera Temple was built by Solanki Rajputs two years ago, today tweets saying it was built by Gujjars and then deletes it.

“In Gujarat, the state government on its website has declared the state as the land of Gujjars and termed Kshatriya clans like Parmar, Pratihar, Solanki, Chauhan etc as Gujjars, whereas the fact is that even today the population of Gujjars in Gujarat is negligible and the Gujjar caste is not even mentioned among the notified castes. We have written a letter to the Chief Minister of Gujarat in this regard,” he added.

“Before Independence, the British tried to distort our history to prove their superiority and after Independence, the then political leadership also tried to distort our history. Myths were fabricated and they were proved and propagated with the help of power.

“The entire society has been suffering for decades. Over the years, this communal appeasement has turned into caste appeasement and our history is being targeted by the present political leadership to nurture it. Rajputs have made inconceivable sacrifices for this nation and since time immemorial, they have fought with the terrorists. History is our most valuable asset and every Rajput is susceptible to it. Those who encourage attempts to dispute the identities of our ancestors for their petty political ambitions, society considers this act as not only unfortunate, but a conspiracy against our society as a whole. We oppose every such conspiracy,” Sarwadi said.

Meanwhile, Mihir Army chief Himmat Singh Gurjar, replying to Sarwadi’s claims, said, “Whenever the society has been educated, it has seen its history getting rectified wherever it has gone wrong. This is also a reformation. Mihir Bhoj and Prithviraj Chauhan belonged to the Gujjar community. Rana Poonja was and will remain Bhil. People who came into existence after 13th century should not give history information.

The term Rajput, according to him, gained credence after the 13th century. Earlier, they were called as Kshatriyas, he said.

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