While speaking at a public event in Goa, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and Rajya Sabha lawmaker Subramanian Swamy said that Ravan, a principal character in Ramayana, was born in modern day Noida, Uttar Pradesh.
In his lecture titled, Indian Cultural Heritage and Its Importance, delivered at Margao on Sunday, Swamy was making the case that the notion of a "divide" between Aryan dominated northern India and Dravidian dominated South India was planted by British colonists, IANS reported.
Swamy said that M Karunanidhi, former chief minister of Tamil Nadu, who died in August, believed that Ravan was Dravidian, but this was not the case. The Rajya Sabha lawmaker claimed that Ravan was not born in Lanka, modern-day Sri Lanka, but in a village called Bisrakh, close to Delhi, in Noida.
"And Rama was a hate figure for these people because he was from the north and he killed Ravan who was from Lanka and therefore Dravidian. Well, Ravan was not from Lanka. He was born in a village near Delhi, it is called Bisrakh. You can still go and see it. There are big billboards. The area is called Noida," he said.
Swamy, according to the newswire, said that after Shiva blessed him, Ravan went to Lanka and defeated his cousin Kuber and became 'Lanka Naresh'. "Therefore, I say to you that first of all, recognize that we all are one people. We did not come from some faraway place, as the British wrote in their history books," he said.
At the same event, Swamy claimed that the value of the rupee was falling because black money was "leaving" India.