Chandigarh: If one is to examine the history of Hindutva and all that it entails, we glean that religious fundamentalism is sort of new evolution in the history of otherwise peace-loving and tolerant Hindus. The ancestors of North Indians or Indo-Aryans and Dravidians or south Indians lived with a mutual understanding which produced a close-knitted nation of ‘Bharatvarsha’, or as Indian subcontinent was called some 6000-7000 years ago.
As civilization here started flourishing some 5000 years before the birth of Christ, the tales of India’s riches and its culture attracted scholars from all over the ancient world. It, however, also brought invaders. But these invaders were so impressed by India they ruled without disturbing the inherent unity. Indians also accepted every other invader with open arms and assimilated them within themselves.
Thus, came invaders from Central Asia, Iran, Greece and then Islamic rulers. Each of them came and embraced India. The miracle of India was that a country with majority Hindus was being ruled by hand-few of foreigners and then Muslims. But India remained peaceful, as rulers were benevolent and subjects were tolerant.
But it was not to be so for long.