Other pointers are the unfamiliarity of Aryans with the elephant, a very Indian animal as exhibited by their name for it ?Haathi? (a beast with a hand) and their borrowing of names for familiar agricultural implements like the plough from local Dravidian languages that pointed to their pastoral past.
Sanskrit language was believed by the nineteenth century orientalists, especially by Sir William Jones to be an Indo-European language and hence had many common features to other Indo-European languages like Old Persian (Avestan), Celtic (Old Irish), Italic (Latin) and Germanic (Old English) languages.
According to this theory, these languages originated from a common ancestor called the ?Proto-Indo-European? (PIE) language that was diversified into these Indo- European dialects.
However, many modern historians in the West who were interviewed by Bryant were of the opinion that current evidence does not support an invasion of South Asia in the pre or proto-historic periods.
Instead, it is possible to document archaeologically a series of cultural changes like languges reflecting indigenous cultural developments from pre-historic to historic periods; that points to a continuous development of a superior culture that culminated into the Vedic Aryan culture. Thus, the evolving Sanskrit assimilated the original Dravidian languages by adopting local names for various objects.
One of the famed opponents of the invasion theory is American Hindu scholar David Frawley (or known by his honorific Hindu name Vamadeva Shastri) who has opposed the theory in his two books The Myth of the Aryan Invasion of India and In Search of the Cradle of Civilization. David Frawley opposes the Aryan invasion theory with his own theory on the missing river Saraswati being the centre of the Indus civilisation. Frawley criticises the 19th century racial interpretations of Indian prehistory as a wishful theory of a conflict between invading caucasoid Aryans and native Dravidians. According to Frawley, European Vedic interpreters used this same racial idea to elucidate the Vedas. The Vedas speak of a battle between light and darkness and this was interpreted as a war between light skinned Aryans and dark skinned Dravidians.
Such so-called scholars did not bother to examine the fact that most religions and mythologies including those of the ancient American Indians, Egyptians, Greeks and Persians have used the idea of such a battle between light and darkness (symbolic of the conflict between truth and falsehood) in a metaphorical way.
Further, he points out that European scholars pointed out that caste in India was originally defined by colour or varna into 4 classes and these points to the colour coding of the populace.
In Mahabharata, varna classifieds the Brahmins as white, the Kshatriyas as red, Vaishyas as yellow and Shudras as black.
However, Frawley points out that these colours refer to the gunas or qualities of each class metaphorically; white being the colour of purity (Sattvaguna); dark that of impurity (tamoguna); red the colour of action (rajoguna), and yellow the colour of trade (also rajoguna).
The racial idea reached yet more ridiculous proportions when Vedic passages speaking of their enemies (mainly demons) as without nose were interpreted as a racial profiling of the flat-nosed Dravidians.
This idea was taken further and Hindu gods like Krishna, whose name means dark, or Shiva who is portrayed as dark, were said to have originally been Dravidian gods taken over by the invading Aryans (under the simplistic idea that Dravidians as a dark-skinned people must have worshipped dark colored deities).
In a similar fashion, some scholars pointed out that Vedic gods like Savitar or the Sun-God (to whom the Gayatri Mantra is dedicated) had golden hair and golden skin, thus proving the presence of blond and fair-skinned people living in ancient India.
However, Savitar was a Sun-god and the Sun-god is usually represented as golden in colour in all ancient cultures.
Additionally, the Indus civilisation is interpreted as the lost civilisation on the banks of the now-extinct river Saraswati by Frawley and was very much a part of the Vedic civilisation.
Frawley insists that the Indus civilisation should be renamed as the ?Saraswati Civilisation? and he insists that since the ancient Saraswati dried up around 1900 BC, the Vedic texts that speak so eloquently of this river must predate this period.
Important proof of the Saraswati civilisation theory is the satellite findings for presence of untapped water in Thar Desert area of Rajasthan by Indian scientists revealed the probable presence of the river Saraswati in the area during the pre-historic period and was revealed to the NDA Government in 2003. The report was suspiciously hushed up by the UPA Government as it assumed power in 2004. It is well known that in the Rig Veda, the greatest and the holiest of the rivers was not the Ganga but the now dry Saraswati. The Ganga is mentioned only once while the Saraswati is mentioned some 50 times and there is a whole hymn devoted to her. Extensive research by the late Indian archaeologist Dr Wakankar has shown that the Saraswati changed her course several times, going completely dry around 1900 BCE.
Map showing the course of the ancient river Saraswati; that was the lifeline of the Harappan civilisation and its drying up was responsible for Harappa'sdecline and not the Aryan Invasion as was assumed earlier.
Bryant opines that linguistically Sanskrit has developed on the grammatically inferior but more popular languages of Pali and Prakrit that forms a ?continuum of cultural proof? against the invasion theory. Also, Bryant concludes that there is proof that there was in ancient India a continuous cultural development under a small minority of an elite noble class of Indians whose culture was wrongly assumed to have been imported from the West under the guise of the Aryan Invasion theory.
Thus, Aryans as a people were Indians in origin has been almost conclusively proved by historians worldwide and in India.
The disapproval of the Aryan invasion by majority of scholars both in India and abroad has proved to be a shot-in-the-arm of the votaries of ?Hindutva? who have always maintained that ?Bharat Varsha? has been a self-reliant nation of unique qualities since the ancient times with glorious achievements in the fields of science, astronomy, metallurgy, languages, literature, art, poetry and above all culture.
Leftist Historians who are well entrenched in the Indian government'sacademic institutions had opposed the NDA Government'smove in 2000-01 to include these changes inimical to their line of thought as the ?saffronisation of history? and had opposed NCERT, the government'spremier academic body, to make the necessary changes under its Director, Prof. J.S. Rajput'sdirectives.
The current UPA Government'sHRD Ministry headed by Arjun Singh deleted the changes made during the NDA regime and has stubbornly resisted all attempts by world renowned historians to denounce the theory bequeathed to us by the colonial regime. Of all interested parties, school students will be the most affected and left groping in the dark about these new developments.
It is a sad state of affairs that this drastic shift in our perception of ancient India as ?a land of all round excellence while Europe was still groping in the Dark Ages? has fallen prey to partisan politics and will continue to languish in the dark.
Meanwhile Indian students will continue to imbibe the old theory and fail to discover the glory of their motherland; a sure recipe for evaporating any sense of patriotism in the new generation!