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Return of the Aryans

The Return of the Aryans (ROTA) is an epic novel about the dawn of ancient Indian civilization based on 18 years of painstaking research by bestselling author, Bhagwan Gidwani. Weighing in at 944 pages, it’s a vast and absorbing tale of journey and adventure, romance and betrayal, discovery and loss.

As of September 2015, an abbreviated version, March of the Aryans (MOTA), has been translated into French and Marahati and is ready for publication.

Read ROTA book review by Ram Jethmalani

Read selected ROTA chapters.

Indo-Aryan Migration Into IndiaAuthor Bhagwan Gidwani challenges conventional wisdom, which assumes that Aryans from northern Asia and Europe settled India.  He contends the Aryans originated in India, left India and returned.

Themes from Return Of The Aryans

AIS selected several themes from the book “RETURN OF THE ARYANS” By Bhagwan S. Gidwani. View the summary and all the detailed chapters here.

The Origins of the Hindu Nation

About 7,000 years ago, a canoe drifted ashore the banks of the Sindhu River carrying a baby cradled in the arms of its dead mother. According to ancient legend, the river had delivered a god, the future king of a unified Hindu nation, into the arms of Karkarta Bharat, a retired tribal chief well known for his passionate pursuit of freedom and unity. Bharat, and his wife, Mataji, recognized the baby as Sindhu Putra (Son of the River) and raised him as their own. People from the entire river valley travelled many miles to behold and worship the boy. When Sindhu Putra turned seven years old, his parents sent him away to complete his education and to grow up as a normal child without the distraction of clamoring crowds.

God or Man?SIndhu Putra

After he completed his education, Sindhu Putra set out on horseback in search of his own truth. He struggled with his divided nature. Should he present himself as god or man? Godhood was thrust upon him, yet human affection was all he wanted.

He wandered alone from village to village living off the kindness of strangers. Nobody noticed him till one day he questioned a foreman who worked his slaves in violation of Bharat’s law. Experiencing anger for the first time, Sindhu Putra revealed his identity and proclaimed the land one land, his father’s land, Bharat Varsha.

Embracing his father’s dream of freedom and unity for all Hindus, he decided not to call himself a god, but not to deny it either. While still a young man he fulfilled his destiny by eradicating slavery, promoting justice and unifying the Indian subcontinent. Under his influence, three sister civilizations merged to form Bharat Varsha, a nation larger than modern day India, Pakistan and Afghanistan combined.

The Aryan Exodus

His accomplishments, unfortunately, were short lived. Soon jealous tribal chiefs successfully plotted his assassination, broke apart his kingdom and turned on his subjects. Suffering abuse and humiliation, his people, the ryas, declared they were no longer ryas of Bharat Varsha. Proclaiming themselves not ryas (or a-ryas or Aryans), they flooded out of India in search of a pure land where they could live in peace.

Return of the AryansMigrating by land and sea, they resettled in Asia, the Middle East and Europe. But no matter where they settled, there was no perfect place. They witnessed corruption and poverty in Sumer and Assyria, forced faith and slavery in Egypt, divergent sexual practices and animal cruelty in the Russian Caucasus, and discrimination and intolerance in Germany. Soon they realized no place offered better than their abandoned homeland. As the allure of home grew too strong to resist, large waves of Aryans and their descendants returned to the subcontinent bringing with them foreign-born spouses, fair-skinned children, new customs, languages and beliefs.

Controversy:  Who were the Aryans and Where did They Come From?

Return of the Aryans is Bhagwan Gidwani’s second historic novel. Both are controversial. The first, The Sword of Tipu Sultan, which Sanjay Khan adapted into a 52-episode TV drama, managed to antagonize both Hindu and Muslim fundamentalists. The former felt Tipu’s portrayal was too generous; the latter felt it was too unorthodox.

Likewise, ROTA challenges conventional wisdom which assumes Aryans from northern Asia and Europe brought civilization to India. Instead, Gidwani contends that the Aryans, anchored in the timeless tradition of Sanathana Dharma, originated in India, travelled north – civilizing much of the rest of the world – and returned to India. In other words, ancient Indian culture is indigenous to the subcontinent, not an import from the north.

Given that ROTA is the only serious study of pre-Vedic civilization, Gidwani understands the academic community’s reluctance to embrace his theory. Though not everyone agrees, the heft and depth of his scholarship has forced historians to give his theory serious consideration especially in light of new archeological and related research. Whatever version of history they eventually endorse, Gidwani shines a bright light on India’s glorious past, the origins of Hinduism, its open-mindedness, pluralism and generosity of spirit.

By bringing the past into sharper focus, he hopes to restore a sense of national pride, especially for the current secularized generation, which is out of touch with the glory of its Hindu heritage. “We were great once,” he says. “We can be great again.”