Historians contended on Jodhaa Akbar

Has Ashutosh Gowariker got it all wrong? Noted historians have contended that his highly publicised film Jodhaa Akbar, starring Hrithik Roshan and Aishwariya Bachchan, is factually incorrect.

Noted historians maintain that Mughal Emperor Akbar never married anyone named Jodhabai. And that Jodhabai was, in fact, his daughter-in-law, Jehangir’s wife.

“Historical documents, including Akbarnama and Jehangir’s memoirs, say it was not Akbar but Jehangir who got married to the House of Jodhpur. So the princess was later called Jodhabai,” says historian Satish Chandra, author of NCERT History books.

Agrees historian Mohammad Amin. “Akbar forged alliances with Rajput families and he married the daughter of Raja Bharmal of Amber, who was later titled Maryam Rahmani or the Mother of Rulers of the Universe. But there is no evidence to say that she was called Jodhabai.”

The debate comes ahead of the film’s release next month. Rajput organisations in Rajasthan have threatened to block the release, accusing Gowariker of distorting facts.
When the film was about to go on the floors couple years ago, the Rajput Mahasabha had warned the makers about potential consequences of manipulating history for a political agenda (BJP ruled Rajasthan is due for elections soon as are other BJP states like Madhya Pradesh). Lawsuits were said to be bound to follow for starters with violence following possibly after that.

But since then, apart from the Rajput Mahasabha, a 2nd front, the Karni Sena has stepped forward warning Jodha Akbar also. It has warned the people of Jodha Akbar of physical consequences upon film’s release if they felt an unseemly agenda using coverups and distortion of history was being perpetrated using the cover of this movie. Jodha Akbar has been threatened to be taken off the screens its first weekend itself if that would be the case.


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