Irfan Habib is a political and religious ideologue in India who fancies himself as a scholar and historian. The fact is that his attempts at talking history are not just juvenile but stink of outright political point scoring. He has now become a troll who is trying to ‘get back at BJP and Hindutva’. The problem is that he neither knows history nor is he good with politics.
Recently, he argued that while BJP is trying to take out the names of the invaders and butchers of Indians, who happened to be Muslims, and replace them with the original names of the places which those butchers wanted to erase from history and memory; so maybe BJP should look at the name of their party Chief – Amit Shah.
Because in his esteemed understanding of history – which probably comes from reading lots of famed and scholarly Amar Chitra Kathas – Irfan Habib thinks Shah is a Persian in origin and so Muslim in its fundamental nature. If only Indian historians wannabes had read something more serious than Amar Chitra Katha and Chandamama, things would be so much more interesting and competitive. But the problem is that based on these rather comics dressed as scholars, even politicians – who are as ideological as Habib – go on to make a mockery of themselves!
Let us understand where the word Shah come from and its recent and ancient origins and it will be very clear that it is anything but Islamic in origin.
But hey, no one can every accuse Indian historians of being serious about scholarship, can one?
There is a word in Sanskrit – क्षयति (Ksayati meaning – Have power over) which is a derivative of the word क्षत्रिय (Kshatriya – which really means ‘One with the power or Sovereignty”’). In Zoroastrian Avesta, the corresponding word was xšaϑra Vairya – which meant ‘dominion to be chosen’, where xšaϑra or kshatrya also means power or command.
The Middle age Persian word for xšaϑra is ŠAHREWAR. The word in Middle Age Persian – (šahr) or the Old Persian (xšaçam) also comes from क्षयति.
The word Shah – comes from the Zoroastrian word Sarewar, or xšaϑra or Sanskrit word क्षत्रिय.
Now, if one knows anything about India’s minorities, one would realize that Zoroastrians are the Parsis. When the Arabs attacked Persia, the natives, Zoroastrians (the real native Iranians), left Persia (now Iran) and came over to India. The Islamic invaders – the Arabs – persecuted, killed and raped the Zoroastrians and converted those to Islam who could not run away.
The cultural symbols and language was impacted but carried on in a fundamental sense. Shah – which led to the word Shahenshah – came from that Zoroastrian and Persian origin. A word, which – in क्षत्रिय – also had a Sanskrit origin.
Amit Shah, true to the origin of his name – is a political warrior. One who is putting an end to the dynastic rule of those who have been hell bent on destroying the very culture and civilization of India. He, as a Shah, is in the lenient of those who were the source and keepers of power – क्षत्रिय.
You see, if you dig into history and language a bit deeper than the profound history read of Amar Chitra Katha and Chandamama that Mr Irfan Habib religiously relies on, you would easily find that Shah is ANYTHING but Islamic in its origin.
It’s origin is in the Vedas and in Avesta of Zoroastrians. Both civilizations that were attacked by Islam and Muslims. Amit Shah, therefore, Mr Irfan Habib, has absolutely NO reason to change his name. He needs to celebrate it!