Indian History Carnival – 51: Aryan Invasion Theory, Chennai, Jim Corbett, Subhash Bose, Sir C P Ramaswamy Iyer

  1. An often neglected aspect in the Aryan Invasion-Migration debate is astronomy and Vedic chronology. TRS Prasanna, a Professor at IITB has a paper on this.
  2. Prof. Prasanna has published an article in the latest issue of Indian Journal of History of Science titled “Ancient Indian Astronomy and Aryan Invasion Theory”; you can download a the preprint version of the paper here (pdf). Here are some of the highlights of the paper:
    » A simple method to date the Brahmana period to about 3000 BC
    » The origin of Mahashivratri and its dating to about 3000 BC
    » Interpretation of Ekastaka verses and their relevance to dating the Vedic texts.
    » The position of Krittika during the Samhita period (which, sort of explains my title to this post!)

  3. How did Chennai get its name? Sriram writes
  4. Did the temple give the city its name or was it the other way round? Perhaps the former is the correct explanation for Chenna Kesava was a common name for Vishnu in temples of south India. Whatever be the correct theory, it cannot be denied that Chennai and the Chenna Kesava Perumal temple grew in size together. The temple that Thimmannan built was located where the present High Court premises stand. A visitor to the city in 1673, Dr Fryer penned his impressions of the shrine, most of which is unfortunately in completely unintelligible English.

  5. Look and Learn blog has an article about Jim Corbett or Korbit Sahib as he was known.

    Yet as the years passed, Jim Corbett found himself shooting less and less. A friend had made him a present of a movie camera and he found more pleasure in recording the habits of the magnificent animals he loved than in exterminating the rogues. Even Sultana’s bandits, watching Corbett and his friends making their way stealthily along the old watercourse knew it. What puzzled them was the fact that Korbit Sahib had taken to hunting men.

  6. About 69 years back Subhash Chandra Bose declared the forming of a Provisional Government of Free India based in Singapore. WSJ blog writes about him and few people who were involved.

    On the evening of Oct. 21, 1943, after announcing the formation of the provisional government, Mr Bose also formally inaugurated a Queen of Jhansi Regiment (or RJR) training camp in Singapore. RJR was the female wing of INA and named after a 19th-century queen of an Indian princely state who had also fought against British rule in 1857-58. 

  7. The role of Sir C P Ramaswamy Iyer in the murder case of Robert William Escourt Ashe has more twists and turns than a movie. Maddy has the details.

    Now enters the next important man in the case. It was none other than Subramanian Bharati, who was also holed up in Pondicherry. Bharatiyar as he is more popularly known, was born in Ettayapuram, a palace I covered at length in my article about Kattabomman, and a place of much ,musical repute. After a trip to Benares, his spiritual and nationalistic fervor increased. By 1904 he was a active journalist espousing the causes of the downtrodden and writing against authority. He was soon aligned to the Tilak brand of militancy and sometimes engaged with VOC at nearby Tuticorin. When Ashe took up the cudgels against VOC, Bharati testified in support of VOC. This put him also into the bad books of the British and soon, faced with imminent arrest, he fled to Pondicherry. He continued his strident tone in an immense volume of literary output from Pondicherry. While there he got involved with Aurobindo & VVS Iyer and teamed up in many anti British activities. It so happened that two of the pamphlets he authored were found in the house of Vanchi Iyer after security guards ransacked it for evidence. The government suspected Bharati and VVS Iyer of having had a direct hand in the planning of the murder

The next carnival will be up on April 15th. Please send your nominations to Thanks once again to the contributors which makes my life easy.

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