web analytics
November 24, 2014 / 2 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



The Advent of Hitler in India

Dr. Navras Jaat Aafreedi

Photo Credit: Tazpit News Agency

Hitler is considered a heinous historical by most of humanity, but in the last few years India has been witness to the advent in his popularity.

Dr. Navras Jaat Aafreedi, an Assistant Professor at the Department of History & Civilization in Gautam Buddha University in India, is a scholar of the history of the Jewish communities in India. Last month he concluded a lecture tour to Israel, during which he gave a lecture titled “The Rise of Hitler’s Popularity in India” at Tel Aviv University. He notes that “India is the only country in the world where Jews have lived with their non-Jewish neighbours in complete harmony for more than two millennia. Jews are India’s smallest religious minority and Muslims its biggest, and the two have produced beautiful examples of amity, unlike anywhere else in the world.”

Hiltler has rapidly gained popularity in India in recent years. This phenomenon is a paradox because of the absence of Anti-Semitism in India. Yet, though the country has never known anti-Semitism, sales of Hiltler’s Mein Kampf have risen over 15% in the last decade. The name “Aryan” is becoming a popular first name in India, and “Hitler” is the name of the protagonist in many a Bollywood production.

Dr. Aafreedi offered a few explanations. Unlike the modern-day neo-Nazis who idealize Hitler for his racism and persecution of the Jews, Indians who respect Hitler do so out of misinformation. He believes that this rise in Hitler’s popularity is not a result of anti-Semitism: “It can be ascribed to the absence of Jewish Studies in India, where Islamic Studies are available at almost all major Indian universities. The level of ignorance among Indians about Jews is hysterical and the state has been unwilling to introduce Jewish Studies in India, whereas in the neighboring country China, Jewish Studies are available at ten of its universities.” He explains that Indians are largely ignorant of the Holocaust, and such individuals “tend to see it as a justified collateral damage for the greater good of Germany, influenced as they are by the way Hitler is often projected as a hero by the Hindu right wing,”

He observes that “Most of the Indians do not even know about the Jews, let alone the Holocaust. Among the section of the Indian population that is aware of the Holocaust, there are many who have fallen into the trap of the Holocaust deniers and have started either doubting it as a whole or just its scale.” As part of this misinformation, many Indians believe that the Axis powers of World War II were partially responsible for India’s independence from the British in 1947. It is believed that Hitler’s battle with the Allies forced Britain to focus their resources in Europe. Britain was unable to control a territory as large as India, leaving room for an Indian independence movement. Subhas Chandra Rose, a key figure of the Indian independence movement, collaborated with Axis powers to raise an army to fight the British.

Another reason is the younger generation’s great desire for strong leadership. Dr. Aafreedi thinks they do not have good examples.

Dr. Aafreedi believes that the key to combating this situation is the dissemination of facts. “I promote Jewish Studies in India, the study of Jewish history, culture and religion. It is just not possible to understand the two most widely practiced religions, Christianity and Islam, without a study of Judaism, oldest of the three Semitic monotheistic religions. It is important for any nation to appreciate and recognize the contributions made to it by its religious minorities. If this does not happen, the society becomes intolerant towards minorities, which has grave consequences not just for the minorities but also for the majority community. In India, Jews happen to be the smallest religious minority and the Muslims, the biggest. As a result of their small numbers, most of the Indians know them only through secondary sources, which are mostly unreliable, and not as a result of any direct contact with them. Ignorance gives birth to stereotypes and misconceptions, and hatred thrives on falsehood. Hence, it becomes very important to promote Jewish Studies in India. If this is not done, we would neglect one-sixth of mankind.”

Hitler’s Mein Kampf is available in almost all Indian languages, but the only book on the Holocaust in India’s national language, Hindi, is an FAQ about the Holocaust published by Yad Vashem. Dr. Aafreedi has worked and continues to work in spreading accurate information about Judaism and the Holocaust in India. He has organized cross-cultural and international student dialogues at the University of Lucknow. There he also invited Jewish authors and filmmakers to speak about their works and brought a number of Muslim intellectuals to speak out against anti-Semitism. “I believe that if awareness is created through the spread of information,” he says, “it can help in eliminating many misconceptions that people have.”

However, he has met resistance in his work. “Since I started working as an Assistant Professor, I have designed a number of courses with Jewish themes embedded in them in a camouflaged manner, as I failed to get approval for my proposed courses focused on Jewish themes and on the Shoah. It is hard to get approval for such courses in Indian academia as the administration fears that it might lose the goodwill of its political masters if any action of theirs has a detrimental effect on their political masters’ Muslim votes.” Muslims in India do not know that Arabs enjoy equality and high standards of living in Israel, and believe that the mosques on Temple Mount are closed to Muslims because of Israeli control. Because of such misinformation, Indian political parties do not make efforts to support Israel likely because of fear that the large Muslim population will turn against them.

Yet he still finds ways to inform his students of the truth. In a History of Science and Technology class he once taught to engineering students, for example, he assigned a paper asking students to analyze the misuse of technology during the Holocaust. He also introduced a series of weekly film screenings at the university, where he shows movies on the Holocaust and other Jewish themes.

“I made a serious effort to eliminate misconceptions and to bring into sharp focus the Jewish contributions to the world,” he says of his work. He concluded, stating: “I ask the world to help me in my endeavour to remove hatred and to promote peace through the spread of knowledge.”

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

3 Responses to “The Advent of Hitler in India”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Holocaust is taught in middle school history so People know about Hitler.As Hindu dharma preaches- God is one, paths are different, Name is different so they don't hate anyone but you got the part right about importance of Muslim votes. That is current Pro-Muslim govt. fallacy

  2. Anonymous says:

    Anything which puts Muslims in bad light, is suppressed in India. As 99% Indians ve no opinion/knowledge on middle-east, they get influenced by Muslim voice which strongly anti-Israel and Pro-Palestine. Whereas, if they listen to their Dharma- India and Israel should be best friends for all purpose. Jews and Hinduism/Buddhist/Sikh/Jain only religion which were not created after Prosecuting anybody.
    Our leftist education system and media even suppresses true India history- glorifying all Islamic invaders and pointing all ills in Hinduism.
    Before Islam came to India through invasion- India very pro-minority country- Iranis fled after Islamic invasion and took refuge in India , & I think same was case with Israelis too in 1 AD ,
    Indians don't even know how Hinduism is different from Abrahamic faiths -
    but we need such academic discourses. and understand why Muslims hate Jews and why we Hindus should always be Pro-Israel.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Forget Judaism, Hindus don't even study actual Quraan & Bible! Such is power of our brain dead current Government- Anything to do with promotion of Hindu values, protection of temples etc. is strongly suppressed in India to not to hurt "Muslim sentiments".
    I strongly support having Jewish Study in our colleges- India after all proclaims it is secular country- so what's wrong in teaching all religions?

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
France Jew in a French synagogue talks about rising anti-Semitism.
Israel to Ease Absorption, Employment for Immigrants from France
Latest News Stories
Israeli police shoot tear gas to disperse Arab rioters throwing rocks in Isawiya, October 2014. (archive)

Security leaders re-activate a special unit in Israel as Arab rioters injure four police officers in Jerusalem.

Rabbi David Lau visits Temple Mount activist and assassination target Rabbi Yehuda Glick at Shaarei Tzedek Hospital.

The doctors completed their surgery and accomplished what they set out to repair.

France Jew in a French synagogue talks about rising anti-Semitism.

Israel’s cabinet decides to clear obstacles for employment of immigrating professionals.

Iman in Har Nof

Sheikh Samir Aasi says “I Was Attacked Because Of What I Stand For. These Extremists Don’t Want Relations Between Religions”

Former Washington DC Mayor Marion Barry died early Sunday at age 78.

A Tennessee watchdog group says textbooks in the state’s schools are teaching children to hate Israel and Jews.

In New Zealand a Jewish toddler wearing a yarmulka is attacked; the adults consider teaching their young to hide their identity.

If there were such a thing as “diplomatic police,” Abbas would have been arrested long ago for crossing red lines.

Both the town and the tower were destroyed in a violent fashion. A layer of ash shows they were burnt.

Son of Isaac Bashevis Singer, Israeli author Israel Zalman, dead at 85.

They were harmless men simply looking for “song birds.” Uh-huh.

US law states anyone who “Incited terrorist activity with intent to cause serious bodily harm or death” should be barred from entry.

The police knew the PA Arabs were sleeping in the cemetery, they just couldn’t figure out where…

The US is so used to believing lies that it can hardly distinguish them from the truth.

One of the most effective weapons of an enemy is to destroy the opponent’s economy, and Jews are cooperating.

More Articles from Jacob Shamsian, Tazpit News Agency
Dr. Navras Jaat Aafreedi

Hitler’s Mein Kampf is available in almost all Indian languages, but the only book on the Holocaust in India’s national language, Hindi, is an FAQ about the Holocaust published by Yad Vashem. Dr. Navras Jaat Aafreedi has worked and continues to work in spreading accurate information about Judaism and the Holocaust in India.

PNP

Director of Tazpit News Agency, Amotz Eyal, stated that the collaboration between Tazpit News Agency and the Weekly Press Pakistan has, for the first time, exposed millions to news and balanced information coming from Israel.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/jewish-news/the-advent-of-hitler-in-india/2012/07/30/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: