May be the internet connections happened through holograms and people beamed themselves like the way they do in the fictional world of Star Trek. May be that's how Narad Muni travelled.
When did India get internet connectivity? Most people will say that in 1990s. Some may even say that internet came to India just a decade ago or so, because it wasn’t until middle of the last decade when internet, emails, IMs and web pages etc reached some of the smaller towns. And some will ask “internet what” because there are still places in India that are not connected to the World Wide Web. But Tripura’s newly-elected CM Biplab Kumar Deb is different. He believes internet existed in India for like forever. It existed even during the time of Mahabharata.
Speaking at a Regional Workshop on Computerisation and Reforms at Pragna Bhawan in Agartala, Deb said Indians had access to internet during the time of Mahabharata.
“Indians have been using internet since the times of Mahabharata. This is the only explanation of how Sanjaya could narrate the entire tale of the battle of Kurukshetra to blind king Dhritarashtra without physically being present at the event,” he said. “Internet existed long ago in our country. It may have got lost in the middle but India was top in technology since the times of Mahabharata.”
Makes sense. Well, as much sense as whole Mahabharata, which in itself existed, partially existed or didn’t exist, depending on who you ask. And if the existence of Mahabharata is unquestionable for some then the existence of internet during Mahabharata for the same people could be the same.
But you know what else existed during the time Mahabharata? Once you let the imagination and (blind) faith run wild, anything and everything can exist. Facts don’t need to matter? If internet existed where are the ancient fibre lines? You can say that the cables don’t matter because it was wireless internet. If internet existed where are the computers? Facts again don’t matter because crazy imagination. May be the internet connections happened through holograms and people beamed themselves like the way they do in the fictional world of Star Trek. May be that’s how Narad Muni travelled.
As you can say talk is cheap and facts are expensive. The fact is that the Tripura CM is talking what many will term nonsense. And there is no end to such talk. He even says that it was internet that helped Sanjaya narrate Mahabharata to King Dhritarashtra. According to Deb, it was internet and satellite power, and no divine vision gifted to Sanjaya by Sage Vyasa, that helped Dhritarashtra “see” the war. Or rather why stop here. Why not just say that he saw the big war in virtual reality through a headset like Oculus Rift, thousands of years before Facebook and Google have created these gadgets.
What else? A lot. We can keep going. If satellites and internet existed in the time of Mahabharata, there is also a good chance that the entire war of Kurukshetra might have been fought for a WiFi password, which was secretly changed by King Dhritarashtra. Or just imagine the plight of Pandavas, who roamed forests for years, frustrated by the lack of internet.
Ideally, instead of talking of the glorious internet that India had, it would be better to talk about the poor web connectivity in the Indian towns and villages, including those in Tripura. Once there is that talk, there is some hope that it would improve in future. For long, and that is experts say, Tripura has suffered under the rule of Left government. People in Tripura probably look forward to some positive changes from the new BJP government, and possibly better wireless and wired internet connectivity in the state. Let’s hope the politicians in the state give them gigabit connections and fast 4G instead of tales from Mahabharata.