India and its ancient knowledge, which still dominates the world, have always been on the radar of western institutions and historians.
In a latest, University of Cambridge recently published a PhD thesis on its website by researcher Rishi Rajpopat. “A grammatical problem which has defeated Sanskrit scholars since the 5th Century BC has finally been solved by an Indian PhD student at the University of Cambridge,” Cambridge published this on its website.
The Cambridge researcher Rishi Rajpopat has claimed that he had decoded 2,500-year-old Sanskrit puzzle called Panini Sutra “1.4.2 – vipratiṣedhe param kāryam”– In the event of a conflict between two rules of equal strength, the rule that comes later in the grammar’s serial order wins.
Rajpopat rejects this, arguing that Pāṇini meant that between rules applicable to the left and right sides of a word respectively, Pāṇini wanted us to choose the rule applicable to the right side.
Reacting on this issue, Samskrita Bharati, which is working for the protection, development and propagation of the Samskrit, said, “The claim that the Cambridge University researcher Rushi Atul Rajpopat has made in his PhD research thesis titled “In Panini We Trust” under the guidance of Dr. Vincenzo Vergiani has created lot of noise and dispute. His opinion on an assumption is on the basis of very narrow, shortcoming of being non-applicable to a wide range of linguistic Usages. It is out of sync with and transgresses the famous grammatical tradition called Trimunivyakaran, which is in existence since thousands of years and continued without any break. Therefore, being untruthful and unuseful for all types of targeted application, being derived from a logic of own creation, it is absolutely unacceptable. The commentary given by Maharshi Katyayan and thereafter Maharshi Patanjali of the formula (Sutra) “विप्रतिषेधे परं कार्यम्” (Vipratishedhe param Karyam), that ‘Param’ means the Sutra that serially comes later as per the Panini Ashtadhyayi is followed largely and has the potential to be applied to an infinite number of targeted words and that is the only commentary being accepted Universally. Hence, we state equivocally that only this tradition is worth following owing to its university, logic and wide acceptability. Therefore, it is advised that Rajpopat should have rethink and revise of stand.”
In this background, Dr Shivamurthy Shivacharaya Mahaswamiji of Sri Taralabalu Mutt, Sirigere, Karnataka, while strongly reacting on this issue said, “The media has made sensational news that the young researcher of the Cambridge University has cracked the 2,500-year-old Sanskrit puzzle. I am shocked by the claim made by this researcher and I find his interpretation illogical, invalid and misleading. There is no puzzle to crack in the Panini Sutra “1.4.2 – vipratiṣedhe param kāryam”. This Sutra is well understood in the Indian tradition of grammarians. The researcher only is misinterpreting it to his convenience.”
“According to him, the word param in this Sutra refers to the right part in a Samhita (juxtaposition of words) and not to the Sutra of a higher number as has been understood in the traditional grammar. He fails to properly substantiate the word ‘vipratiśedhe’ for his preference to select the Sutra applicable to the right part. There is also a general misconception in the minds of the western scholars that this rule refers to the Samjnas and not to any Sutra.
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One of the western scholars in the past went to the extent of even alleging that Katyayana was a rival of Panini. Actually, the Vārtikas of Katyayana are nothing but the amendments or supplements to the Sutras of Panini filling the gaps in the growth of Sanskrit language as it was spoken during his times,” Dr Shivamurthy Shivacharaya further added.