'Akbar had set up Meena bazaar, women used to do all the work there. The way Akbar used to go there in disguise and do misdeeds, it is recorded in history,' Madan Lal Saini said. (ANI/Twitter)
In what can be called a new history lesson, Rajasthan BJP Chief Madan Lal Saini has called Mughal Emperor Akbar a ‘molester’. In fact, he went on to claim that Akbar had tried to harass Bikaner’s Queen Kiran Devi and was spared only after he begged her to let him go. Calling the Mughal Emperor ‘characterless’, Saini said that, “Akbar had set up Meena bazaar, women used to do all the work there, men weren't allowed. The way Akbar used to go there in disguise and do misdeeds, it is recorded in history.” Speaking during the an event organised to mark the birth anniversary of great Mewar king Maharana Pratap, Saini said that it was wrong to compare Maharana with Akbar.
"I believe Maharana Pratap's respect, his glory won't be lessened by removing it from books. Maharana Pratap is in people's hearts, he cannot be removed from there. He cannot be removed from history. They may remove four lines from the history about him,” Saini was quoted as saying.
His baffling comments stoked controversy in Rajasthan, which has seen several such historical debates in the past. Slamming Saini for his shocking remarks, senior Rajasthan Congress leader Archana Sharma said that, "The entire country is proud of Maharana Pratap's valour and people imitate his values but the BJP leader has presented a distorted history which creates enmity in society and leads to its disintegration."
For the record, the Mughal Emperor is called Akbar the Great for his exceptionally good, pathbreaking rule. He reigned from 1556 to 1605 and extended Mughal power over most of the Indian subcontinent. In order to preserve the unity of his empire, Akbar adopted programs that won the loyalty of the non-Muslim populations of his realm.
Historians remember Akbar and Maharana Pratap for the famous battle of Haldighati, 1582, It is remembered for Maharana’s outstanding warfare feats and valour where he, through the Guerilla Warfare tactics and only twenty-thousand soldiers fought against Mughal Akbar’s 80, 000. However, he lost the battle and later died of grievous injuries.