Not on ‘Right’ Side of History? Why JNU Asking Romila Thapar to Submit Her CV is Making Noise – By Eram Agha
The Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) administration has sought the curriculum vitae (CV) of renowned historian Romila Thapar to review her status as professor emerita. The authorities have justified the move on the grounds of changes in rules and regulations of the university regarding the continuation of a professor emeritus after turning 75.
The move has stirred a controversy as a section of the academia feels that this is being done to “dishonour the acclaimed historian”, who has been critical of changes in the JNU and for not being on the ‘right’ side of history writing. Thapar’s run-ins with right-wing thinkers and politicians are not new. Some have in the past even called her and other historians of the genre as “the progeny of Macaulay, Marx and the madrassas.”…
In May 2019, Thapar wrote in NYT about the Narendra Modi government’s fascination for history and writing “make-believe-versions of the past.” While expressing her wonder at why was history so important to “Hindu nationalists”, she wrote, “Nationalists are known to construct an acceptable history to identify those they claim constitute the nation; extreme nationalists require their own particular version of the past to legitimise their actions in the present. Rewriting Indian history and teaching their version of it is crucial to justifying the ideology of Hindu nationalists.”…
- Reviewing emeritus status a bid to show regime’s muscle – Romila Thapar with Seema Chishti (Sep 8, 2019, Indian Express)
- This government is frankly anti-knowledge – Editorial (Sep 4, 2019, The Telegraph)
- Undue process – Editorial (Sep 3, 2019, Indian Express)
- Law of Sedition Needs to be Toned Down if Not Abolished – By Justice Deepak Gupta (Sep 8, 2019, The Wire)