A mural in the new Parliament building depicting the influence of ancient Indian thought in its immediate neighbourhood went viral on social media on Sunday with many claiming it represents the resolve for an Akhand Bharat, described as a ”cultural concept” by the RSS.
The mural in the new Parliament building, inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday, marks important kingdoms and cities of the past, and shows the influence of ancient India in the then Taxila, in present-day Pakistan.
”The resolve is clear – Akhand Bharat,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said on Twitter.
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The BJP’s Karnataka unit shared photographs of the artworks inside the new Parliament House, including the murals of ancient India, Chanakya, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and B R Ambedkar and the cultural diversity of the country. ”It is a symbol of the vitality of our proud great civilisation,” the Karnataka BJP said on its Twitter handle.
”Akhand Bharat in New Parliament. It represents our powerful & self-reliant India,” Manoj Kotak, Lok Sabha member from Mumbai North-East, said on Twitter.
A number of Twitter users welcomed the depiction of ‘Akhand Bharat’ in the new Parliament building and wondered whether it was the reason for the Opposition boycott of the function.
”Our idea was to depict the influence of Indian thought during the ancient ages. It extended from the present day Afghanistan in the northwestern region to south-eastern Asia,” Adwaita Gadanayak, Director General, National Gallery of Modern Art said.
Gadanayak was involved in the selection of artworks displayed in the new Parliament building. According to the RSS, the Akhand Bharat concept refers to the undivided India whose geographical expanse was very wide in ancient times — present-day Afghanistan, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Thailand.
However, the RSS now maintains that the Akhand Bharat concept, in the present times, should be seen in the cultural context and not political given the partition of India on religious lines at the time of Independence.