Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim
The eventful history of India is full of self-sacrifices and bloody struggles. This 1.8 square kilometer terrain is teemed with diversity. This terrain can be called a natural blessing from Allah. Here, people's lifestyle, manner, socialization, and political wisdom are full ofvarious dimensions. The Indian Subcontinent was a hub of natural resources. Various nations, tribes, and people came to India to loot or seize those resources. The latest of that legacy was the English. They kept India under occupation for around two hundred years.
One-fourth of the world's population, approximately 200 crores, lives in the Indian Subcontinent. The Hindus and the Muslims are the majority here. However, people of other religions such as Buddhists, Christians, fire-worshippers, and many others also live here.
As far as politics is concerned, India has come into touch with various races and religions since ancient times. As a result, separate regional governance has been formed at different times at different places. Dravid is the oldest tribe of India. The Dravidians were the progenitors of the civilizations of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro. The Aryans came from Central Asia and seized power by overthrowing them. India is the amalgamated abode of the Aryans and the non-Aryans. Then gradually, the Shaka, the Huns, the Portuguese, the Afghans, the Pathans, the Turkish, the Mughal, and the English penetrated successively. Some went back to their countries after looting resources, while others started living here permanently and ruling. The most noteworthy long-term rulers in India are the Sultans (351 years), the Mughals (331 years), and the English (190 years).
The Indian Subcontinent, situated in the southern zone of the Asian Continent, consists of a vast terrain. It has the Himalayas to its North, Iran and the Arabian Sea to its West, the Indian Ocean to its South, and Myanmar to its East. Natural enclosures encompass it. In terms of size, it is equal to the whole continent of Europe except Russia. The Indian Subcontinent, being a colossal terrain, can be divided into two major parts based on its natural structures: ?ry?varta, aka North India, and Deccan, aka Southern India. The Vindhya Range is situated at the centre of the Subcontinent. The vast expanse extending from the Vindhya Mountains up to the Himalayas to the north is called ?ry?varta, and the entire southern part of the Vindhya Mountains is known as the Deccan.
Rivers like the Ganges, the Yamuna, and the Brahmaputra originated from the Himalayas have kept the greenery of the eastern terrain of ?ry?varta intact, whereas the Sindh River and its tributaries have kept the western landscape exuberant. These riverine regions are the most significant areas of India. The Himalayas, situated to the North of India, has encompassed India like a wall. It acts like a demarcated India from China, Iran, Afghanistan, and Russia. There are mountain passes like Khyber, Gomal, and Bolan on the north-western border of India in the Himalayas. The Deccan is a Plateau country. It slopes from west to east. It has the Eastern Ghats Mountain to its east, Western Ghats Mountain and Koromandel to its west, the Vindhya Mountains to its North, and the Indian Ocean to its South. This natural phenomenon has saved the Deccan from foreign invasion for an extended period. North India carries the memories of the Aryans, while South India carries the memories of the Dravidian civilization. Rivers like MahanadA, Godavari, Krishna, and Kaveri originated from Eastern Ghats and Western Ghats Mountains. Their tributaries have kept the region fertile.
India is inhabited by people of different races, religions, and languages. The history of India is full of the rise and fall of diverse ethnicities and religions. The lofty peaks of the Himalayan Mountains in the north of India and the turbulent sea waves extending east-west and South add to its natural beauty. Many merchants have crossed the Arabian Sea to enter different parts of India to trade for hundreds of years while some traders have crossed the Indian Ocean to the South and reached as far as China. India has been a business hub long before the Arab Conquest and the emergence of Muslims. Rivers like Sindh, Ganges, Yamuna, and Brahmaputra have witnessed historic incidents and the rise and fall of many races. The drum of war was played in the battleground on the banks of Jhelum, Chenab, Bipasha, Shatadru, and Ravi. India is rich in memories of happiness and sorrow, adorned with greenery, gemstones, and food grains.
Diversity of religions and opinions prevails in India. In ancient periods, pagans happened to live here. Later they came to be known as Hindus. Then over the period, Buddhism and Jainism emerged. India witnessed the advent of Islam at the beginning of the eighth century. Then came the Christianity. Besides, there are also fire-worshippers (Persians) and followers of other religions. Hindus are the majority in terms of numbers. Muslims are second to Hindus. To be noted, Muslims or Islam did not originate in India. Several Muslim auliyas came from Arab and preached Islam here. Millions of people converted to Islam within a short time. Likewise, a vast range of languages has also come together here. Its immense size and natural diversity have contributed to the emergence of various languages. Approximately two hundred languages and dialects are prevalent here. Hindi, Urdu, Telugu, Bengali, Assamese, Rajsthani, Punjabi, Pashtu, Sindhi, and Guajarati are worth mentioning. When Muslims came here, Persian and local Hindi were amalgamated to create a new language, Urdu. Though there is no All-Indian language in India, Hindi, Bengali, and Urdu are the languages of the majority. Independence of India: An Eventful History covers the period from the birth of India to the Indian Independence in 1947.
The complete history of India is impossible to cover in one book. India had been subjugated for thousands of years. Numerous Indian people had been victimized by exploitation, tyranny, and torture. Millions of people have been martyred. Countless patriots had to accept the gallows for the sake of independence. It is impossible to mention the each and every martyrs of the independence struggle. I have tried my best to discuss the heroes of independence movement. Many revolutionary and martyrs' names could not be included here, while numerous have remained anonymous. I express my heartfelt love and reverence to them.
Enormous assistance has been taken from many modern research books while writing this book. I am grateful to those writers and researchers. The necessary objectivity and neutrality have not been compromised. Mistakes if any are purely unintentional. I have not found any book till now that covers the period from the eve of Indian civilization to its Independence in 1947. Hence, I took the humble initiative to write a book on the history of India. Though in brief, I have tried to depict the eventful history of India from its beginning up to independence. How far I have been successful will be assessed by the readers.
The Indian Subcontinent gained its independence in 1947, resulting in the birth of two independent countries named India and Pakistan. Pakistan had two parts: East Pakistan and West Pakistan. Pakistan was created based on the erroneous Two-nation theory. West Pakistani rulers have exploited and tortured East Pakistan. With Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in the forefront, a free and a sovereign country named Bangladesh was born on 26 March 1971 in exchange for lives of 30 lac martyrs and 2 lac mothers and sisters' dignity. Now there are three independent states in the Indian Subcontinent: India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh.
The author is a Member of Parliament for Gopalganj-2. He is a member of the Standing Committee of Bangladesh Awami League.