Bhopal: Former Madhya Pradesh Minister and scion of the ruling family of Rewa, Pushpraj Singh has written a strongly worded letter to the chief minister pointing out that the role of the former ruler of Rewa Maharaja Martand Singh Judeo, has been omitted deliberately and many important facts have not been included in a short film on Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve that goes under the logo of Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve and carries the creditline ” a film by Nishant Kapoor”.
The film in question, according to Pushpraj Singh, is a cruel joke when it comes to history, people’s emotions and the present State Government’s efforts and the commitment of the Prime Minister and the State chief Minister to promote tourism.
In his hard hitting letter, Pushpraj Singh has said that the feelings and emotions of hundreds of thousand people of Vindhya Pradesh have been hurt as there is no mention of the highly respected late Maharaja Martand Singh in the controversial documentary.
After going through the commentary of the Bandhavgarh documentary, which is now under a raging controversy, Newsroom24x7 validates the point raised by Pusphpraj Singh, a scion of the ruling family of Rewa. What amounts to hiding the real fact and the role played by the former Maharaja of Ruler in making Bandhavgarh a National Park has been buried, obviously with some ulterior motive.
To underscore this, we quote a relevant portion from the commentary that runs through the documentary: “After Independence, India was coming to grip with the situation and the Government paid special attention to its national treasure, the jungles. Slowly and steadily, the forest department came into action and started activities linked with forest conservation and even before the enactment of the wildlife Protection Act in 1972, Bandhavgarh was declared a National Park. Then in 1973, under Project tiger, a campaign was launched all over the country to save the tigers. And in a few years, Bandhavgarh came back to life and became a tiger habitat.”
Stamping the documentary that appears to mischievously distort history, MP Tiger Foundation Society says in a fb post: ” Shot in just six days, this 8-minute film by Nishant Kapoor attempts to capture and present the history of this forest, starting from Ramayan era and gradually progressing to present day.”
Taking strong exception, Pushpraj Singh is fully justified in pointing out that late Maharaja Martand Singh had asked the then Prime Minister late Indira Gandhi to make Bandhavgarh a national Park in 1967-68. He was the first among all the erstwhile rulers, who took the initiative to ban hunting and gave up all his personal firearms. The documentary in question projects exactly the opposite of this.
Singh has said in his letter to the chief minister that It is well-known throughout the world, the role played by the late Maharaja of Rewa in the protection and procreation of the white tiger. There is no mention of this in the documentary.
Many tigers have been safely relocated during the tenure of the present State minister Rajendra Shukla and this forms an important chapter in the history of Bandhavgarh but even this aspect is missing from the documentary, Singh goes on the underscore.
Singh has stated that the era of the Kalchuri rulers who ruled over the Bandhavgarh landscape between the 6th and 10th Century and 17th Century legend Mian Tansen, who hailed from this territory have been completely ignored in this documentary.
Raising a pertinent question, Singh has asked what was the need to make a film on Bandhavgarh once again when only a year ago the State Tourism department had officially commissioned National Geographic to make a film of Bandhavgarh and budgetary resources had been earmarked for that purpose. The documentary by National Geographic under the Traveller India series can be viewed at “Bandhavgarh National Park, Home to the Wild and the Majestic ”
This film was put in the public domain on December 28, 2017 by National Geographic, in partnership with Madhya Pradesh Tourism, under the Heart of Incerdible India Series. Click here for Pushraj Singh speaks about the splendor and history of one of the best tiger habitats in the world
Singh has especially underscored a few factual blunders in the controversial documentary by Nishant Kapoor. He has pointed out that Lord Vishnu’s temple and the Kabir Choura of Vishnu’s Dashavtar built in the 6th to 8th Century as shown in the film is actually the new temple built at a lower level. The real Kabir Choura is actually inside the fort. He has even gone on to allege that the present Bandhavgarh Park Director Mridul Pathak has done this deliberately as he does not want the Kabir Panthis (followers of saint Kabir) to climb up to the Kabir Choura. It is wrong to say that people have volunttarily given up their belief and faith, he has said in his letter to the CM adding there is strong resentment among the people due to the rigid stand and poor management of the tiger reserve.
While there is a mention of Vishnu Dashavtar, Kabir Choura and Sita Mandap in the documentary, but the ground reality is that the potential to connect the tourists with the history of India and how it is interwoven with the history Bandhavgarh has been completely negated in the documentary, says Singh, the true torchbearer of the Bandhavgarh legacy .