Mohammad Habib

Indian historian

Mohammad Habib was an Indian historian of medieval India. In 1947, the year of India's independence, he delivered the presidential address to the Indian History Congress. He was a professor, later emeritus, at Aligarh Muslim University.


  • The peaceful Indian Mussalman, descended beyond doubt from Hindu ancestors, was dressed up in the garb of a foreign barbarian, as a breaker of temples and as an eater of beef and declared to be a military colonist in the land he had lived for about thirty of forty centuries.
  • The Hindu feels it his duty to dislike those whom he has been taught to consider the enemy of his religion and his ancestors; the Mussalman, lured into the false belief that he was once a member of a ruling race, feels insufferably wronged by being relegated to the status of a minority community. Fools both! Even if the Muslims eight centuries ago were as bad as they were painted, would there be any sense in holding the present generation responsible for their deeds. It is but an imaginative tie that joins the modern Hindu with Harshavardhana or Asoka, or the modern Mussalman with Shihabuddin or Mahmud.
    • Mohammad Habib in Politics and society during the early medieval period: collected works of Professor Mohammad Habib, Volume 1 (1974); p. 12
    • Quoted in Identity and Religion: Foundations of Anti-Islamism in India by Amalendu Misra; published by SAGE Publications, p. 210
  • In 1330 the country was invaded by the Mongols who indulged in arson, rape and murder throughout the Valley (of Kashmir). The king and the Brahmans fled away but among the inhabitants who remained… Muslim ways of life were gradually adopted by the people as the only alternative…
    • Mohammad Habib in Some Aspects of the Foundation of the Delhi Sultanate, p. 20
    • Also quoted in Indian muslims: Who Are They, p. 91 & Growth of Muslim population in medieval India, A.D. 1000-1800, p.160; by K. S. Lal
  • No honest historian should seek to hide, and no Musalman acquainted with his faith will try to justify, the wanton destruction of temples that followed in the wake of the Ghaznavid army. Contemporary as well as later historians do not attempt to veil the nefarious acts but relate them with pride.
    • Politics and Society During the Early Medieval Period: Collected Works of Professor Mohammad Habib, Volume 2; p. 78
    • Mohammed Habib, quoted in Elst, K. 2002, Ayodhya: the case against the temple. Ch.10.

About Mohammad HabibEdit

  • Around 1920 Aligarh historian Mohammed Habib launched a grand project to rewrite the history of the Indian religious conflict.
    • Koenraad Elst. Negationism in India: Concealing the Record of Islam (1992). Also quoted in review article "Elst on Habib" by Amber Habib, which itself is quoted in K. Elst, Ayodhya: The Case Against the Temple (2002).
  • I was told by [Mohammed Habib] with considerable pride that Nehru had learnt the history of medieval India “at his feet.” I have yet to meet a more arrogant man whose manners were uglier than his syphilitic face. He was an ardent admirer of Stalin’s Russia and Mao’s China. He lost his temper and asked me to “go away” when I told him that I did not accept Lenin’s theory of the state.

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