U R Ananthamurthy's Serial Distortions


In the past few days, the Kannada media has seen a lot of discussion pertaining to the remarks made by Dr. U R Ananthamurthy (URA) about Narendra Modi. Many columnists have penned scathing rebuttals to what can only be termed as hare-brained remarks from URA. All this is fine considering we enjoy a relatively free if not entirely fair media. URA was well within his rights to defend himself by substantiating his remarks with articles in any of the mainstream newspapers. He did not do that. Instead, we were treated to a bizarre public statement issued by a bunch of litterateurs like H S Doreswamy, Girish Karnad, Prof. B K Chandrashekar and others. It was titled Character Assassination in the name of Freedom of Expression (translated). The last few lines in that statement were particularly interesting (translation mine): ….it is relevant to discuss if the language and conduct of media is to be regulated by law or is it best left to self-restraint. We are in favour of self-restraint. In other words, this bunch of litterateurs issues a veiled threat about legally regulating freedom of expression. What temerity does this bunch have to even talk of curbing freedom of expression? The answer to this can be traced back to Nehruvian times.

Being touchy of criticism (Dr. Shyam Prasad Mookerji can attest to this), Nehru went on to impose that sly “subject to reasonable restrictions” condition on freedom of expression in the Constitution. This kind of ambiguous wording meant a lot of scope for misuse. His daughter Indira Gandhi exploited it to the hilt when she imposed a gag on the press during the Emergency. It is for this reason that URA and his ilk love the Congress. And the Congress in turn rewards them with awards and plum postings. Now, back to the ill-advised public statement we were discussing. People enraged by such high-handedness poured out their outrage in the Kannada media, a heartening sign.

Serial Distortions

On 25 September 2013, it was reported that URA was at his antics again. This time, he had spoken of things ranging from Mahabharata, Hinduism, Savarkar, Nehru, Patel and others. Destroy Hindutva, Save the Congress was the gist of his talk. While he is free to have his opinion, it smacks of intellectual laziness when sweeping statements are made without a shred of evidence.

We can begin with this assertion: ‘If not a writer, who would raise these issues?’

In the last few years, the Kannada print media has hosted several important discussions on such important issues as conversion, Tipu Sultan and on the message of Avarana, the novel by the noted Kannada litterateur, Dr. S L Bhyrappa. URA contributed nothing to these discussions by way of writing. Indeed, he is only to be seen in interviews or public events, like a typical professional politician. Thus, URA comes across as a politician more than anything else. Words spoken vanish into thin air. That however, is not the case with writing. It takes effort to write something worthwhile. Also, words spoken can be disowned; or they can always be attributed to ‘misquoting’ by journalists. But writing does not offer this leeway. Once something is written, it stays. It cannot even be disowned. Therefore, URA does not write a great deal. Perhaps it was to accommodate economy-mode writers like URA that the Jnanapith award began to be given away under the “cumulative contributions” category.

Note the ambiguity in URA’s wording, which means it can be interpreted to mean anything. And where there is room for interpretation, there is room for corruption. Look at it whichever way, responsible writing is not URA’s strength. In stark contrast, the legendary Kannada novelist Dr. S L Bhyrappa directly initiated or catalyzed all the aforementioned debates (Conversion, Tipu Sultan and Avarana) by way of writing. All the people who contributed to those debates by their writings, irrespective of the stand they took, deserve appreciation. URA was not one of them. Now, it is up to the readers to evaluate which is the more honourable way for a writer.

Further, in politics, it is very rare to hear people cry ‘insult’. Politicians believe in slugging it out no holds barred. That is what gives them their aura and appeal. Similarly, writers are expected to contribute to political discourse by way of their writings, either as facts or by way of symbolic fiction. Instead, if a writer struts around passing irresponsible remarks and still expects to be accorded the respect due to a writer, he/she can only become the butt of jokes. If we look at it from this perspective, politicians are a cut above URA. Folks like him, who cry ‘insult’ at the first hint of criticism directed at them, would do better to introspect. These worthies have no compunctions in labeling Mr. Modi as communal or Fascist. No court in India has convicted Mr. Modi. So, how is it that these worthies call him names so liberally? Perhaps their confidence comes from their faith in the CBI’s ability to pin Mr. Modi in one of the many cases that are being investigated.

Accusing the RSS

And here’s what this selfsame URA had commented on the relief efforts during the Bhuj earthquake at the start of the century: ‘The volunteers of the RSS reached the affected areas swiftly and served the people. But they would not return the gold they got there to their rightful owners.” Isn’t this character assassination? How can a person who labels thousands of volunteers as thieves without a shred of evidence be respectable?

Phony Mahabharata

URA also spoke about a story involving sage Gautama and Ahalya attributing it to the Mahabharata. He further commented that this story was narrated by Bhishma when he was on the bed of arrows. Having read the critical text of the Mahabharata in its entirety in the original, I can say that no such story exists there. The burden of proof is on URA. Here is how he has been reported to have elaborated on this fiction.

“Bhishma had seen the wickedness of the Kauravas. He was also sure that that they were wrong. Yet, he was inclined to be law-abiding. Hence, he was not sure whether to take side with the Pandavas or the Kauravas. This is Hindu Dharma” (Translation mine)

Note the sly manner in which URA seems to suggest that confusion is the essence of Hindu Dharma. He is basically trying to tell his audience that like Bhishma, he is not too keen to take sides with either the Congress or Modi but he would still go with Congress (like how Bhishma ended up with the Kauravas). Here, URA is implying that he is on the same moral plane as Bhishma was. A renowned warrior who could not protect the honour of a helpless woman is indeed a great moral example to emulate! Indeed, Duryodhana himself gives us the best assessment of Bhishma and the other elders of the Kaurava assembly. When the popularity of the Pandavas was on the rise, Duryodhana plans to banish them to Varanavata where they would be burnt to death in a palace made of combustible material. When his father expresses his anxiety about offending the elders in the Kuru assembly, here is what Duryodhana tells him.

मध्यस्थः सततं भीष्मो द्रॊणपुत्रॊ मयि स्थितः ।

यत्र पुत्रस्ततॊ द्रोणॊ भविता नात्र संशयः ॥         (१.१३०.१६)

Bhishma is always neutral. Drona’s son is with me. Drona will be where his son is.

कृपः शारद्वतश्चैव यत एते त्रयस्ततः ।

क्षत्तार्थबद्धस्त्वस्माकं प्रच्छन्नं तु यतः परे ॥       (१.१३०.१७)

Krupa will be where these three are. Vidura, despite being our dependent, is a secret supporter of Pandavas.

न चैकस्सः समर्थॊऽस्मान् पाण्डवार्थे प्रबाधितुम् ।

सविस्रब्धः पाण्डुपुत्रान् सह मात्रा विवासय ॥        (१.१३०.१८)

But he alone cannot hurt us in our dealings with Pandavas. Hence, suspend your anxieties and banish the Pandavas with their mother

And we all know what followed. This is proof enough of how Bhishma’s neutral or ‘non-aligned’ policy supported evil men like Duryodhana. If Bhishma had put his foot down against injustice at this junction, Draupadi would probably have been spared her humiliation. And there would probably have been no war at all. Indeed, the destruction of the entire clan of the Kurus can be root-caused to this ‘non-aligned’ disposition of Bhishma. And Nehru, despite leading a democracy, was likewise in joining hands with dictators like Nasser in the name of the inconsequential ‘non-aligned movement’. URA says Nehru and Patel were like Bhishma. While he was true about Nehru, he is entirely wrong about Patel. Just one evidence is enough to prove it. If Patel was as confused as Bhishma was, he would not have been able to integrate even one princely state to the Indian Union, let alone 500+. Nehru dealt with only one – Kashmir. And it is a headache even today. So much for U R Ananthamurthy understanding of Mahabharata and Sanatana Dharma!

Message of the Mahabharata

As a digression, it is worth examining what the message of the Mahabharata is. It is elucidated at the very beginning of the epic:

क्षत्तुः प्रज्ञां धृतिं कुन्त्याः गान्धार्या धर्मशीलताम् ।

वासुदॆवस्य माहात्म्यं पाण्डवानां च सत्यताम् ।

दौरात्म्यं धार्तराष्ट्राणामुक्तवान् भगवान् ऋषिः ॥  (१.१.५९)

The learned Vyasa narrated about these – the ever-aware intellect of Vidura, the tenacity of Kunti, the righteousness of Gandhari, the greatness of Krishna, the truthfulness of the Pandavas and the deceitfulness of the Kauravas.

It is Krishna that the epic considers as great; not Bhishma. Indeed, on that point, our national epic entertains no doubts. When Krishna comes to Hastinapura to seek peace with the Kauravas, Duryodhana tries to win him over with lavish hospitality. But Krishna is a man who can see things for what they are, unlike Bhishma. Thus, he says – ‘A messenger partakes of hospitality only after his job is well done. Once you do what I want of you, I shall partake of all your hospitality’. When Duryodhana presses him further, Krishna speaks these immortal words –

नाहं कामान्न संरम्भान्न द्वेषान्नार्थकारणात् ।

न हॆतुवादाल्लॊभाद्वा धर्मं जह्यां कथञ्चन ॥  (५.८९.२४)

Desire, indecision, hate, money, hollow polemics, greed – None of these shall move me away from the right path.

सम्प्रीतिभॊज्यान्यन्नानि आपद्भॊज्यानि वा पुनः ।

न च सम्प्रीयसे राजन्न चाप्यापद्गता वयम् ॥ (५.८९.२५)

When you eat in someone else’s home, it is either because you love them or because you have no food to eat. You have not given me cause to love you and I am not short of food.

अकस्माद्द्विषसे राजन् जन्मप्रभृति पाण्डवान् ।

प्रियानुवर्तिनॊ भ्रातॄन् सर्वैः समुदितैः गुणैः ॥ (५.८९.२६)

Ever since birth, you have hated the virtuous Pandavas for no reason.

सर्वमॆतदभॊक्तव्यमन्नं दुष्टाभिसंहितम् ।

क्षत्तुरेकस्य भॊक्तव्यमिति मॆ धीयते मतिः ॥ (५.८९.३२)

The food that you are offering me owes its root to evil. I believe that only Vidura’s food is worth eating here.

In the end, Krishna goes to Vidura’s home and enjoys his hospitality.

What’s noteworthy here is Krishna’s assertion that no food except Vidura’s was virtuous in that assembly. Not even Bhishma’s. He did not choose Bhishma for his seniority. He also did not choose Drona, Krupa or Ashvatthama for being preceptors and Brahmins. He ended up choosing the son of a maid, Vidura, purely for his virtues. Krishna has suffered from no confusions whatsoever. And that is why the epic considers him great. And, this is indeed is one of the essences of Sanaatana Dharma. Likewise, if the son of a tea-vendor on a railway platform is winning the hearts and minds of millions of Indians today, it is only for reasons of his virtue.

Now, we can see why the Mahabharata rates Kunti highly. When all efforts to make peace between the Kauravas and Pandavas fail, Kunti sends forth these messages to his sons through Krishna.

To Yudhishthira, she says –

पित्र्यमंशं महाबाहो निमग्नं पुनरुद्धर ।

साम्ना दानेने भेदेन दण्डेनाथ नयेन च ॥ (५.१२०.३०)

Either by way of Sama(diplomacy), Dana(giving some quarter), Bheda(dividing the united), danda(force), reclaim your inheritance.

इतो दुःखयरं किं नु यदहं हीनबान्धवा ।

परपिण्डमुदीक्षामि त्वां सूत्वामित्रनन्दन ॥ (५.१२०.३१)

Having given birth to you, a source of joy to your enemies, I find myself alone and away from my loved ones and am spending my days eating someone else’s food. What can be more tragic?

To Arjuna and Bhima, she says –

एतद्धनञ्जयॊ वाच्यो नित्योद्युक्तो वृकोदरः ।

यदर्थं क्षत्रिया सूते तस्य कालॊऽयमागतः ॥  (५.१३४.९)

Arjuna and Bhima shall be told that the reason, for which a Kshatriya woman bears sons, has come.

She gives another piece of advice to Arjuna –

तं वै ब्रूहि महाबाहो सर्वशस्त्रभृतां वरम् ।

अर्जुनं पुरुषव्याघ्रं द्रौपद्याः पदवीं चर ॥  (५.१३४.१९)

Tell that warrior legend Arjuna to follow in the footsteps of Draupadi.

This is probably the only instance where a mother asks her son to follow in the footsteps of the daughter-in-law. She tells Krishna to repeatedly remind her sons of the humiliation suffered by Draupadi. From these verses, it is clear that even in her old age, Kunti had no confusions about what is right. This ability to take the right decisions in any given situation is one of the defining traits of Sanaatana Dharma. Finally, a few years after the Kurukshetra war, Dhritarashtra and Gandhari decide to retire to the forest. Kunti, who could have enjoyed the comfort of the palace after long years of suffering, decides to follow them instead. Until the very last moment, she would not have told her decision to anybody. When the time to leave came, she says these parting words to Yudhishthira – ‘Do not hurt Sahadeva; Remember Karna; Conduct yourself in a way that pleases Draupadi; I will retire to the forest and spend the rest of my days serving my in-laws’. If this is not tenacity, what else is?

Finally, we can look at Vidura. Vidura is nothing but Krishna without his extraordinary abilities to get things done the way they need to be done. He is the role-model for an honest and vigilant citizen. He had the moral courage to call a spade a spade. We have seen Duryodhana himself testifying to this. Be it in helping the Pandavas tunnel out of Varanavata or advising the Pandavas against accepting the invitation to play dice or protesting against the humiliation heaped upon Draupadi or being the eternal conscience-keeper of Dhritarashtra, Vidura comes across as a steady and fearless voice against injustice. Finally, when Vidura breathes his last, the great sage Vedavyasa himself performs his last rites and accords the respects due to a sage.

It is because of these reasons that Krishna, Vidura and Kunti become the flag-bearers of the great epic.

U R Ananthamurthy is Bhishma

However, URA could only think of Bhishma! And look at the statement that he makes based on such lowly understanding – ‘I can link to my past. But Modi and Sangh Parivar cannot.’ I presume the absurdity of this statement needs no explanation.

And then, URA narrates another story of Bhishma. This time, the story is related to a bunch of Brahmins ‘ready’ to sacrifice cows for a yajna. Even this story is not in the Mahabharata. I wonder which version of Mahabharata URA is referring to. The burden of proof lies again with him. But even this URA-concocted story is a demonstration of Bhishma’s confusion. This is what he had to say – ‘Bhishma knows that the yajna cannot be stopped. He does not endorse it either. But his sympathies are with the cows’. In essence, URA wants to say that Brahmins had no qualms killing cows whereas he, despite not opposing yajnas has sympathy for them. I have only one issue with this. We are not told whether Bhishma had problems with killing animals for yajnas alone, or whether he was only against killing cows for any reason. I would like to look at this issue from the point of view of the animal being killed. This is important because, for an animal getting killed, it hardly matters. Getting killed as part of a yajna is no different from getting killed for someone’s lunch or dinner. Only a pure vegetarian has the right to oppose animal sacrifice in yajnas. And Bhishma, by virtue of being a kshatriya is more likely to be a non-vegetarian. And thus, Bhishma has gotten it all wrong. I don’t know whether URA is a vegetarian. But, because he is a ‘progressive’ it is likely he is not a vegetarian. And hence, his objections carry no credibility.

At this point, it’s also pertinent to examine URA’s modus operandi: project Bhishma’s confusion as a big virtue, concoct self-serving narratives using Bhishma and as a consequence, equate himself with Bhishma. Next, from this position, create doubts in the minds of the people about Modi or at least wean them away from voting for for anyone at all. URA is not alone in this game. In fact, the mainstream media in the country have been leading this effort for the past 11 years. Yet, Modi has been going from strength to strength. It is a testimony to both his tenacity as well as the intelligence of the populace of this country. Recently, actor-turned-politician Ambareesh praised the incumbent CM of Karnataka, Mr Siddarmaiah by comparing his administrative acumen to that of Modi!

However, one clarification is necessary. Animal sacrifice, including cow-sacrifice was a reality in Vedic India. Gavalamba and Gomedha are examples of such yajnas. In fact, animal sacrifice was present in all ancient cultures. There is nothing embarrassing about it.

The much-maligned Manusmriti, which gets portrayed as nothing beyond a manual for caste-based discrimination has this memorable verse –

न मांसभक्षणे दॊषॊ न मद्ये न च मैथुने ।

प्रवृत्तिरॆषा भूतानां निवृत्तिस्तु महाफला ॥

There is nothing wrong in eating meat, drinking liquor or engaging in intercourse. It is but natural for beings. Transcending them though, is virtuous.

This view was proposed 2000 years ago. And, in our times, it is fashionable to flaunt these same views as ‘progressive’.

Savarkar is a Fascist

If this was not enough, URA goes further and brands Savarkar as a fascist. It is now common knowledge that URA can stoop to any level for political patronage. This is just one more instance.

We can begin by recalling B R Ambedkar’s views on Savarkar. The special edition of the monthly ‘Janata’, which used to be published by Ambedkar, had this to say in April 1933 – ‘The work of Savarkar in social reform can be compared to that of Gauthama Buddha himself.’ There are letters written by Ambedkar to Savarkar praising his work in social reform. These details can be found in Savarkar’s definitive biography penned by Dhananjay Keer. Aravindan Neelakandan too has written an erudite piece on this at Savarkar even employed a Harijan for the job of an archaka, a priest, in the ‘patit-pavan mandir’ in Ratnagiri during the 1930s. Later, when Savarkar was arrested following the murder of Gandhi, it was Ambedkar who confessed to L B Bhopatkar, Savarkar’s lawyer, that the case was on flimsy grounds (The Men who Killed Gandhi, Manohar Malgaonkar). He was proven correct: Savarkar was acquitted. But, by then, he had suffered imprisonment for a year under preventive detention, a law, which today, is not applied even to terrorists! (Well, it will not be applied to ‘young’ Muslim terrorists only). In summary, as far as Ambedkar was concerned, Savarkar was anything but a fascist.

And now, we can look at what the British, whom Savarkar fought, think of him. It is a practice in London to commemorate places of historical interest with a blue plaque giving the description of the place. The plaque near India House, where Savarkar had stayed reads thus: ‘VINAYAK DAMODAR SAVARKAR, 1883-1966, Indian Patriot and Philosopher Lived Here. And, by the way, this wasn’t put up by the RSS! In contrast, the wretched Congressman Mani Shankar Aiyar desecrated his memorial. In 2004, this vile Congressman ordered the removal of a plaque commemorating Savarkar in the Cellular Jail at Andaman. The request from the BJP to replace it was stonewalled by the Congress. Indeed, from Nehru onwards, the Congress has always subverted the contributions of true patriots like Savarkar. However, Indira Gandhi comes across as a surprise. When Savarkar breathed his last in 1966, she remembered him as a ‘by-word for daring and patriotism, who was cast in the mould of classic revolutionaries and countless people drew inspiration from him’.

Now, back to URA. He fares worse than a ruthless politician like Indira Gandhi. Now that says something about the depths URA is plumbing. Further, in 1970, Mrs. Indira Gandhi’s government issued a commemorative stamp in honour of Savarkar. In 1983, the birth centenary year of Savarkar, the Films division of the Information and Broadcasting Ministry prepared a documentary film at the behest of Indira Gandhi braving enormous opposition. This information was revealed by the then I&B minister Vasant Sathe during the controversy that erupted in 2004 related to the unveiling of a portrait of Savarkar in Parliament Hall. Sathe also revealed that Mrs Gandhi had made a contribution of Rs. 11000 from her personal account towards the Savarkar Memorial Fund. It is pertinent to remember what Field Marshal K M Cariappa had said after the China debacle in 1962 – ‘Had we paid heed to Savarkar’s advice of modernizing the Indian Army, we would not have faced this humiliation.’ Many such details can be obtained from a book titled Savarkar – The Much-maligned and Misunderstood Revolutionary, edited by Y G Bhave. It is this iconic patriot and revolutionary who appears like a Fascist to the perverse mind of URA.

Supreme Court Verdict on Hindutva

For all the fuss made about it, it is pertinent to quote what the Supreme Court of India thinks about Hindutva. The definitive judgment was delivered on 11 Dec, 1995 by a three-judge bench headed by Justice J S Verma. Invoking a number of past Constitutional bench decisions, this is what they concluded –

These Constitutional bench decisions, after a detailed discussion, indicate that no precise meaning can be ascribed to the terms 'Hindu', 'Hindutva', and 'Hinduism', and no meaning in the abstract can confine it to the narrow limits of religion alone, excluding the content of Indian culture and heritage. It is difficult to appreciate how in the face of these decisions, the term 'hindutva' or 'Hinduism' per se, in the abstract can be assumed to mean and be equated with narrow fundamentalist Hindu religious bigotry….

And this is what the Supreme Court concludes:

It is a fallacy and an error of law to proceed on the assumption that any reference to Hindutva or Hinduism in a speech makes it automatically a speech based on Hindu religion as opposed to other religions or that the use of the word Hindutva or Hinduism per se depicts an attitude hostile to all persons practicing any religion other than the Hindu religion……and it may well be that these words are used in a speech to emphasise the way of life of the Indian people and the Indian cultural ethos…..There is no such presumption permissible in law contrary to the several constitutional bench decisions'

For long years, the left-leaning media propaganda has demonized everything other than secularism. And now, to witness Narendra Modi defying this dictum and proclaim himself a proud Hindu is more than they can stomach. This is the reason they are pulling all stops to sabotage his march towards Delhi. It is the duty of all well-meaning citizens to thwart these attempts at the subversion of democracy.

Closing Remarks

Finally, to conclude the URA episode, it is necessary to look into his suggestion that Modi sharing the dais with General V K Singh is somehow tantamount to a prelude to a takeover of the nation by the Army. It is an undisputed fact that the Indian Army is amongst the most professional in the world despite a history of being at the wrong end of bureaucratic high-handedness. If such an institution can be doubted, what is the reason to have any confidence at all in the Congress, which had thrust this country into a Stalinist Emergency?

Mr. U R Ananthamurthy, I know it is a little too much to expect a written reply from you. The best you can do is to foul-mouth ‘hindutvavadis’ among your peers at the next public event you will attend. At any rate, I know better than to waste advice on you.

And, before I wrap up, Mr. URA, did you hear the statement of Bhavesh Patel, a suspect in the Ajmer bombings? He has alleged that senior Congress leaders like Digvijay Singh, Sriprakash Jaiswal and the ‘innocent Muslim youth icon’ Sushil Kumar Shinde have ben forcing him to indict the RSS. Oh but of course, it MUST be an RSS conspiracy!

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    March 16, 2016


    Different People, Different Thoughts. One cannot know who their biological mother and/ father is until & unless told by her. My point is we cannot ignore or object our

    Puranas, unless and until we have any solid proofs/ points to defend our statements. Personal opinions/ assumptions would mostly be baseless and cannot be trusted up on or considered for further arguments.

    Nevertheless, if you got time, patience and willingness to know about ‘Draupadi’, you can visit my blog and comment.

    Draupadi Amman Thunai – May you all be BLESSED by HER grace!!

    December 30, 2013


    Sir, Thanks for the excellent one. I liked ‘Vidura is nothing but Krishna except………’ . An original comment.

    December 15, 2013

    Ragu Kattinakere

    Dear Vasuki,
    This is one of the most effective articles I have read in years. Thank you so much. Regarding meat eating and slaughtering, I was told by a priest that until about 50 years ago priests consumed hare meet for Shradhdha. Priests overseeing annual slaughter in villages is common even now. I had asked Vidwan Mahabalagiri Sharma a very honest and pragmatic scholar about Ashwamedha. He clearly and unequivocally said it was in fact slaughter of real animals. A Somayaga was performed few years ago and they sacrificed goats. That is how it was. Thank you for this article.

  • October 31, 2013

    Vasuki H A

    @N S Rajaram,

    Very apt of you to have brought up that dressing down which Bhima gave to Drona.

    October 28, 2013

    N.S. Rajaram

    I will comment only that URA is to be compared not with Bhishma who went with the Kauravas because he was not sure that the people behind the Pandavas (Panchalas) had noble intentions, but Drona. Drona, though a Brahmin loved money and comfort. As Bhima tells Drona in the MB War: “We Kshatriyas incur no sin in fighting and killing because it is our duty and fight in the defense of innocent people. But you have sold your services to a sinner and are killing innocent soldiers and animals for a good living for your wife and son.” This better describes UAR than the moral dilemma of Bhishma.

    October 23, 2013

    Bengal Voice

    Recently this Communist U.R.Ananthamurthy was in the news for his verbal diarrhea. He claimed that NaMo isn’t human and that he (URA) will quit India if NaMo becomes PM.

    It’s no wonder that this pervert URA hates NaMo and all Hindus. And here’s the reason.

    Anti-Hindu U.R.Ananthamurthy’s wife Esther is a Christian. They have two children.

    Esther was a teenaged (16-year old minor) student of Ananthamurthy. As a teacher, he lusted for and married his own student. That is why URA is so anti-Hindu.

    In Hindu/Indian tradition, the Guru treats his students like his sons and daughters. But not URA, as he consider his students as his lust-objects. To marry his student meant to violate the Guru code-of-conduct and invite social ridicule. So, URA hated the Hindu tradition for being an obstruction to his way-of-lust.

    Here’s the evidence:

    Esther and home tuitions

    My wife was a little girl with two plaits when I saw her as a student in Hassan. She came over to my house for tuitions. When she sang a film song at some event, it brought tears to my eyes. She sings well even today.

    I had given her class an assignment: ‘Describe someone you like or dislike.’ She had written about me, and made fun of my style of teaching and gestures. The girl with plaits who could write this way about her lecturer had ignited my curiosity and interest.

    The first door of my romantic world opened when I realised she could speak about me with such abandon. I didn’t want a girl who’d adore me; I wanted a companion. I fell in love with the girl who came to me on the pretext of taking tuitions. She was then just 16 or 17. I developed no physical intimacy with her. She was at an age when she didn’t know enough about the world’s ways, or about rights and wrongs. She interacted with me in all innocence. When she invited me over to her house, I felt I was entering another world.

    Esther was one among many students who came for tuitions. While the others paid me a fee, Esther gave me her guileless love.

    Sorry for my impolite question… The question is: If URA developed no physical intimacy with her, and if his love was all platonic (as he claims), how the heck did he beget 2 children with her? Immaculate Conception ? 😉

    October 12, 2013


    Brilliant One.


    October 7, 2013


    Such a lucid manner of expressing thoughts on a rather complex issue. Reading our scriptures in its original format is what most, including me, have not done. Hence, it’s a heartfelt thank you to writers like you and the team behind this website that will educate us, on issues that touch the core of Hinduism and lots more. Absolutely loved the lines you quoted from the Mahabharat during the entire course of the article and the translations provided. Excellent stuff. This site’s on its way to becoming a treasure trove of Indian culture. Hooked to it for sure!

    October 7, 2013

    Raghavendra H

    URA has more aces up his sleeve. He conveniently claims this – “But my critics do not consider that we have more than one version of Ramayana and the Mahabharata, which is why they attacked the scholarship of A.K. Ramanujan also.” (Actual quote)

    URA can always choose a cobbling of the epics that suits his pet theories and can defend anything you throw at him – if he wants to defend it at all. He can essentially say this: “Both of us are referring to different versions. You from your critical edition and me from my grandmother’s version.” It becomes difficult and pointless to argue with such slippery people especially when they’ve stopped writing (as you have pointed out).

    In fact, this is the problem. Since everybody either heard the epics from their (grand)parents or definitely watched the TV epics (The current one on StarPlus is different from the original. Tulsidas ‘s Ramcharitmanas holds sway over Valmiki’s original), they’re all entitled to be experts who are absolutely convinced about their superior understanding of the epics.

    October 6, 2013


    Excellent article Vasu. Kannada version of your article published in kannada prabha was cut short by the editors and was missing the punch.

    October 6, 2013


    Very good article….I do want to add a comment regarding Savarkar. I am from Ratnagiri in Maharashtra where Savarkar lived after his release from Andaman. Everyone in Ratnagiri knows that there is a Pateet-Pawan Mandir built with Savarkar’s initiative to fight untouchability prevailing in the Hindu society. In this temple a Dalit could perform Pooja; and that too in 1931. If this is not progressive then what is it? It annoys me to no end when people call him fascist…. I would rather call the likes of URA and propagandist in media and public life as fascist and traitors.They are the ones who spread lies that go unquestioned….More power to India facts for publishing great articles!


    All is fine except that the author mention about Gomedh. Why should a Hindu be defensive and resign to accept the nonsense that were peddled. I wish Indiafacts, which is formed for the purpose of condemning and correcting any disinformation about the Hindu Dharma, double checks such passing remarks before publishing the same. Here’s a link to a crash course on Animal Sacrifice in Yajnas and Vedas

    • October 11, 2013

      Vasuki H A


      You are the second person to be talking on the basis of flimsy polemic evidence.
      Even though I knew that the video you have posted must have borrowed from SatyarthaPrakash of Swami Dayananda Sarasvati, I still took the time out to see through it.
      And, at the end of the “20 min crash course”, I can safely say it is bunkum.
      The way Tom Altar dismisses an entire tradition comprising of Mahidhara all the way up to Sayana as not knowing the Vedangas (Shiksha, vyakarana, etc) is at best stupid and at worst arrogant.
      Do you even have an idea of what a colossus Sayana was?
      He was the younger brother of sage Vidyaranya, founder of the great Vijayanagar empire.
      He was a profound warrior as well as a scholar.
      His maadhaviyadhaatuvrutti is a milestone in Sanskrit grammar. And this moron in the video says he did not know grammar. He has also enriched the literature of alamkaras, subhashitas, philosophy and many more areas.
      He was the first to write a commentary on the entire Vedic lore and for that purpose, he assembled the best scholars of his time.
      And this moron in the video junks them all.

      The most criminal aspect is, the video DOES NOT GIVE ANY PROOF or examples to show that Sayana or Mahidhara did not know the Vedangas.
      I have showed in an earlier comment here how commonplace killing of cows was. So much so that even dramatists allure to them in a casual way I have quoted from Kalidasa and Bhavabhuti there. I havent even had to start quoting from the Vedas.

      And the other important thing about the video is, there has been no proof presented which explicitly says there was no animal sacrifice in Vedic India. Instead, the author of the video tries to prove his point by quoting those sections which advocate non-violence. Hope you can understand the importance of this point.

      You can even check P V Kane’s “History of Dharmashastra” where there is a detailed discussion of the topic. By the way, he was awarded the “Bharat Ratna” for his scholarly pursuits.
      Till the advent of Dayananda Saraswati in the 18th century, nobody has disputed animal sacrifice. P V Kane comes after him and he doesnt dispute it either. If it is going to be one man’s word against another, P V Kane’s is atleast as good as that of Dayananda Saraswati.

      To claim that till Dayananda Saraswati came along, people hadnt understood the Vedas is downright arrogant and stupid. In fact, in this scenario Swami Dayananda Saraswati can rightly be accused of revisionalism.

      I hope you do have the diligence to go beyond this 20 min video and investigate the original sources. There is really no substitute to that.

        October 16, 2013

        Bharath Ramaswamy

        Thanks for the wonderful article. I had just one question and may be you can answer this better. You have quoted a line from manusmriti with regards to liquor consumption. I have heard about the pancha maha patakas where : Sura Paana is one of them. So is there a contradiction ?

          October 16, 2013

          ganesh R.

          Yes, suraapaana was one among the five deadly sins and this was confined to Brahmins. KShatriya-s fro that matter were allowed to consume alcohol, especially in war and merry moods. Even Vaaalmeeki’s raamaayaNna stands as a proof to this. Of course, there are very many works in Sanskrit which refer to such practices. One can just refer to works of Kaalidaasa, SOmadEva, KShEmEndra and others.

            October 17, 2013

            Bharath Ramaswamy

            Thanks for the response. But the manusmriti line addresses general ‘beings’ and does not separate out Brahmins in that rule. So does manusmriti also have an additional clause to the rule mentioned in the article for Brahmins alone?

          October 17, 2013

          Ganesh R

          For your question, you have to refer to the section meat for do-s and don’t-s of the BraahmaN-s in manusmRti and it is a great dig ration to explain here. However, from the literary sources we know that in spite of the sanctions of many smRti-s, consuming alcohol, meat and the like went on in many sections of the society where Brahmna-s too were a small part (refer to meat consumption of the pancha-gauDa brahmana-s). This perhaps would have lead the dharmashaastrakaara-s to note the weakness of the human-beings in general and made such observations.

        November 6, 2013

        Ankur Koul (@ankurRukna_)

        “To claim that till Dayananda Saraswati came along, people hadnt understood the Vedas is downright arrogant and stupid ” do yo have any idea of the time frame of the Veda ? please check my response to your earlier comment, and lets start quoting from the Veda for the benefit of all.

        November 6, 2013

        Ankur Koul (@ankurRukna_)

        “your writing style is very convincing. “He was the first to write a commentary on the entire Vedic lore” he died in 1387 , are you saying that before that no body understood the vedas ? are you serious?

        • November 17, 2013

          Vasuki H A

          Where have i said that before Sayana nobody understood the Vedas? I only said nobody before him had written a commentary spanning the ENTIRE vedic lore. Is that the same as not understanding? You dont seem to understand plain english also.
          In the earlier comment, i understood you are not very familiar with Sanskrit also. Yet you are asking me if I am serious? I am serious enough to have written an article on which you are enjoying the luxury of commenting.
          And, if you do not accept Ramayana, Mahabharata, Manusmriti or Kalidasa as cultural evidence, that is your problem. I have no need to pamper you on that. In other words, you cannot select the evidence you like.
          Now, if you are serious, YOU quote those sections of the Vedas where it is EXPLICITLY mentioned that animals should not be sacrificed as part of yajnas OR yajnas did not involve animal sacrifice. And I need the exact quote. Numbers wont do. And, no speculation around secondary evidence is accepted. In other words, that Agniveer video evidence wont cut. You have to quote proofs for every meaning you use. So let us see where this goes. Over to you.

            November 19, 2013

            Ankur Koul (@ankurRukna_)

            @Vasuki : now there you go!Read the comment above to “our” communication first.
            I am sure you for the level of intelligence that you seems to possess u would know not to equate vocabulary to the knowledge of the language itself.
            Besides, we are not talking culture here, remember that. and it was U who came here Threatening and waging tongue saying that “I have not started to quote the vedas yet..” so you are the one questioning vedas and hence the burden of proof is on you! so lets not loose focus from the Vedas.
            beside as a primer,
            here is the link to specific vedic verses (read the entire article and focus on the verses only as that is our interest)

    October 6, 2013


    Your writing is great and inspirational!
    My sincere admirations.May you continue with the ‘Courage of Truth and Strength of our Sanaatana Dharma and bring about the awakening of our people.

    October 6, 2013

    vivek sharma

    Great article sir excellent

    October 6, 2013

    Shilpa (@sheefal)

    Very informative blog. Keep up the good work

    October 6, 2013


    Gomedha a reality in Ancient India ? Has this ignoramus bothered to read the works of Swami Dayananda, Subhash Kak or listen to what Pejawara Sri had to say on this issue ?

    • October 6, 2013

      Vasuki H A


      If your erudition does not go deep into the originals and are limited to readings of Swami Dayananda, Subhash Kak and whoever else, that is your problem.
      The original sources – Rigveda, Brahmanas, shrauta sutras are all unambiguous about gavalamba, gomedha and other similar yajnas. The commentary of Sayanacharya, which by the way, is the most authoritative commentary on the Vedas, also does not dispute it.
      In fact, it is such a commonplace fact that even great poets like Kalidasa and Bhavabhuti use it casually in their works.
      In Meghaduta, Kalidasa, while describing the Charmanvati river near dashapura (today’s Daspur) talks about the famous mythical king Rantideva who sacrificed hundreds of cows in that place for his gavalamba yajna.

      व्यालम्बेथाः सुरभितयालम्भजां मानयष्यन्
      स्रो्तॊमूर्त्या भुवि परिणतां रन्तिदेवस्य कीर्तिम् ॥ ४५॥

      Forget yajnas, calves were killed for Madhuparka, a respectful offering to a shrotriya visitor.

      In Bhavabhuti’s Uttararamacharitam, in the prelude to Act 4, Daandayana and Saudhataki, a couple of mendicants in the ashrama of sage Valmiki discuss about the heifer that was slaughtered to offer Madhuparka to sage VasiShtha. Daandayana justifies it thus

      दाण्डायनः – समांसो मधपर्क इत्याम्नायं बहुमन्यमानाःश्रॊत्रियायाभ्यागताय वत्सतरीं महॊक्षं वा महाजं वा निर्वपन्ति गृहमधिनः । तं हि
      धर्मं धर्मसूत्रकाराः समामनन्ति ।
      Daandayana – Those who respect the Vedas offer Madhuparka to a shrotriya visitor. The Madhuparka is
      accompanied by the flesh of a heifer, a bull or a goat. It is an act acclaimed by the creators of

      Many traditional commentators have commented on both Kalidasa and Bhavabhuti. But nobody has disputed these things. In fact, most commentators invoke secondary sources to buttress the practice.

      I have deliberately abstained quoting from the Vedas and Brahmanas because they are lengthy, terse and prosaic. But if someone insists on it, I can quote them at leisure.

      If you still want to dispute me, come up with references from original sources. Otherwise, you can continue with your name-calling business and I dont give a damn about it.

        October 28, 2013

        Ankur (@ankurRukna_)

        @Vasuki doubt : “flesh of a heifer, a bull or a goat”, can you please mention the words that mean this in the verse from uttar Ram charitram you have quoted?

        October 29, 2013

        Ankur (@ankurRukna_)

        @Vasuki : Besides if you want to have a debate on the Shat path Brahman and the Veda in the same context, please feel free to let me know. I will be obliged to clear your misconceptions with proper education.
        but before that suggest you to visit Agniveer at

        • October 31, 2013

          Vasuki H A

          Agniveer was already mentioned here before you. You can check the comment below by Venky. You can read my response to that. I am open to any debate with you. But it would be much better for you to stop using language like “clear your misconceptions with proper education”. You seem to have already decided on the result of the debate. That my views are “misconceptions” and you have the “proper education”.
          At any rate, from your query on the quote from uttararamacharitram, it appears to me that your knowledge of Sanskrit is limited. So, how do you propose to debate on the Shatapatha brahmana and Vedas? Think about it. I am sure you will be relying on Satyarthaprakash and its interpretations. Ihave based this conclusion on you asking me to go through Agniveer. Well, i have written my views about it in the comment to Venky. You can read it up.

          Now, for the words you had asked for in uttararamacharitram.

          vatsatarI – heifer (female)
          mahOkSha – (big) ox
          mahAja – (big) goat

            November 6, 2013

            Ankur Koul (@ankurRukna_)

            @vasuki, i have not read satyarth prakash. but have access to niruka, nighantu vedas and shatpath brahmana, so as far as the verse it concerned, it does not say that “who respect the vedas.” so lets go to the veda, no need to quote the verse just give the number and lets start.

            November 6, 2013

            Ankur Koul (@ankurRukna_)

            secondly, we will discuss on what Dharma is and what vedas sanction ,not what may or may not have been prevalent in history. and also please note that Vedic samskrit is the source itself from where the language Samskrit has emerged.there is a lot of difference between vedic Samskrit and the spoken samskirt today.
            any text that goes against the authority of the veda is outrightly rejected.
            except veda , the authenticity of any other so called samskirt Dharmic text is not guaranteed and may have be altered and adulterated eg. manusmiriti, Ramaya,mahabharat and now i have come to know Uttaramayan.
            what uttar ramayan or kalidas said does not form the basis of Dharma, whatever does not fall in line with the framework of the veda is to be rejected and only what falls in line may be accepted.
            Bottom line, ONLY vedas are the sole authority of Dharma.
            So lets BEGIN.

      October 6, 2013

      Srinivas Hebbar

      Whatever Vishveshwar Teertha says, needs to be taken with loads of salt. This guy is just a racketeer who’s an insult to Madhwa traditions

    October 6, 2013


    Brilliant article. It was URA’s political leaning which denied SLB of Jnanapeta award. Revenge because he referred to URA as profShastri in aavarana indirectly. He has killed literary work in karnataka with his rabid communist preachings. Good the truth comes through this

      October 12, 2013

      Bharat Rane

      But you must admit that Dr. Bhairapa’s Parv is another blatant distortionist novel.