Politics and the appropriation of history

Print edition : September 14, 2018

September 18, 1947: Mohammad Ali Jinnah during an interview in Karachi. Photo: BERT BRANDT/AFP

Bankim Chandra Chatterji. The 27 lines of “Vande Mataram” were originally two separate poems written around 1872 and 1881.

Jawaharlal Nehru and Rabindranath Tagore in deep conversation on November 4, 1936, at the poet’s retreat at Bolpur. Photo: THE HINDU ARCHIVES

Bankim Chandra Chatterjee’s “Vande Mataram” was the subject of controversy even in the 1930s, but contrary to the claims of communal ideologues and politicians, there is no historical evidence to suggest that the Congress leadership “truncated” the poem to appease Muslim sentiments.
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