India’s history has been deliberately distorted, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday as he paid tribute to Lachit Barphukan, the 17th-century general of the Ahom Kingdom who defeated the Mughals, amid celebrations of his 400th birth anniversary across the country. Lasik was instrumental in stopping the expanding ranks of Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Recalling his heroism, Prime Minister Modi emphasized, “The people of Assam faced the invaders and defeated them many times. The Mughals took over Guwahati, but heroes like Lachit Borphukan freed them from the oppressors.”
Our ancestors bore the oppression of terror from foreigners. Heroes like Lachit Barphukan have shown that terror will not be tolerated. India has the capacity to give a befitting reply to those who practice atrocities,” he asserted, suggesting that the country’s history – post-independence – has not done justice to heroes like him. “India’s history is a history of warriors, a history of victory, a history of sacrifice, selflessness and bravery. But we were learning history that was part of the colonial agenda. Doesn’t the bravery of heroes like him matter?” the prime minister asked in a speech at the event.
“After independence, there was a need to fight against the agenda of those who rule us. But that did not happen. Today India has broken the shackles of colonialism and is moving forward, celebrating our heritage and remembering our heroes with pride. Today India not only celebrates its colorful heritage but also remembers its brave unsung heroes,” he added. “The history of Assam is a matter of great pride for the journey of India. We believe in uniting the diverse ideas, beliefs and cultures of India. India has always cherished its rich and cultural heritage; we have always protected our spiritual and cultural principles. That’s what a wonderful civilization we are.”
On Thursday, Amit Shah – while addressing another event associated with Lachit Barphuka – also said that no one can stop India from rewriting its history with pride to remove the distortions of the past. “I have heard many times that our history has been distorted… it has been twisted. There is a possibility that what was written was correct, but who can stop us from rewriting our history with pride now? We will have to adjust it and present our history to the world with pride,” he said.
“Lachit Barphukan inspired the Assamese soldiers in the Battle of Saraighat fought in 1671 and inflicted a crushing and humiliating defeat on the Mughals. The heroic fight of Lachit Barphukan and his army remains one of the most inspiring military feats of resistance in the history of our country,” the central government said in a statement – to details of the celebrations.