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Profile of Tipu Sultan

Dr B.N.Pande mentions an interesting episode. In 1927-28 while doing research on "The Religious Policy of Tipu Sultan" he found in the text book of Matriculation which was written by Hari Prasad Sastri of Calcutta University a statement which stated, "Three thousand Brahmins committed suicide as Tipu wanted to convert them forcibly into the fold of Islam". Dr Pande contacted Dr.Sastri for the source of information. After several reminders came the reply, it was Mysore Gazetteer. Dr.Pande, contacted Brijendranath Seal, the Vice-Chancellor of Mysore University to check the veracity of the statement.
Dr. Seal contacted Srikantaiah, the Editor of the Gazetteer and Srikantaiah informed Dr.Pande that the episode of 3000 Brahmins committing suicide was nowhere in the Mysore Gazetteer, that the whole thing was a figment of imagination and that he as a student of the history of Mysore was quite certain that no such incident had taken place. Srikantaiah supplied Dr. Pande a list of 156 temples to which Tipu paid annual grant. Further Srikantaiah sent photostat copies of Tipu's 30 letters to Sringeri Swamiji. Tipu Sultan, as was customary with the rulers of Mysore, daily visited the temple of Ranganathswamy inside the fort before breakfast. If Tipu was harsh on the Nayars of Kerala, Christians of Mangalore and the Raja of Coorg, it was all because of political reasons as they desired to subvert his power by joining the English. Nor did he spare the Mopillas of Malabar, the Nawabs of Cuddapah, Kurnool and Savanur. Thus, the stories of persecution are highly exaggerated. He never forced the Hindus to become Muslims. On the contrary he raised them to high positions, conferred grants on Hindu temples and Brahmins, gave money for the consecration of images and even on one occasion ordered the building of a temple.

In conclusion we have to say that many great personalities of the world, who apparently failed in their life have yet remained enshrined in the hearts of the people. From Socrates to the present day, many immortals have met their death in tragic circumstances and yet they happen to be the brightest stars on the horizon of human heritage. Great moments of history are not those when empires were built, but those when cherished values of life were protected and goodness of mind was achieved. Tipu died in the spontaneous combustion of hostile forces defending the liberty and honour of the land and not in apathy, inertia or uninventiveness.