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Exploring Distortion & Appropriation of Hindu History & Thought by Western Indologists


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Sat 25 Sep 2021

2:30 PM - 7:00 PM (UTC+5.5)

Conference on Western Buddhism


Inaugural Session – 2.30pm-3.00pm

1 Sri Hari Kiran Vadlamani Welcome Address
2 Dr. Nagaraj Paturi Context of the Conference


Session 1 – 3.00pm-7.00pm

1 Dr. Koenraad Elst Egalitarianism in the life of the Buddha
2 Sri Manish Maheshwari A Rebuttal of the Greater Magadha Thesis
3 Dr. KTS Sarao Victorian Indologists and the Mahabodhi Temple Controversy
4 Sri Rajath Vasudevamurthy Buddhism as a Revolutionary movement: A Critique of Western Indology
5 Sri Megh Kalyanasundaram ‘Karma in and after Greater Magadha’ and ‘Karma in Brahmanism’: An Indic analysis and response
6 Dr. Vishwa Adluri & Dr. Joydeep Bagchee Protestant Buddhism : Western Indologists analysis of Sanskrit Epics
7 Dr. Kathirasan K. Is Mindfulness Really Buddhist?
8 Dr. Kundan Singh Colonial Discourse and Distortions on Buddhism



Sri Hari Kiran Vadlamani

Founder, Indica

Hari Kiran is an investor, activist, seeker and an aspiring artist.


Dr. Nagaraj Paturi

Director, INDICA

Dr Nagaraj Paturi trained in Sanskrit and Advaita Vedanta by his hyper-polyglot, polymath and spiritually accomplished sakala-shaastra-paarangata father, late Sri Paturi Sitaramanjaneyulu garu, he is seriously committed to the transmission of Vedic sciences to the present generation. He designed a very big number of courses of contemporary applications of Vedic Sciences and has been successfully teaching them and getting them taught. Presently he is Presently he is Director, Indic Academy And Distinguished Professor, Curriculum Designer, Executive Committee Member and Member, Board of Studies, MIT School of Vedic Sciences, Pune. Member, Board of Studies for Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth, Kavikulaguru Kalidasa Sanskrit University, Veda Vijnana Gurukula. Formerly Senior Professor of Cultural Studies FLAME School of Communication and FLAME School of Liberal Education Former Visiting Professor, University of Chicago, US) In his PhD (1998, UoH) Developed Indic Model of Myth Criticism of Literature. MPhil (1987, UoH) Brought out Vakyapadiyam as theoretical foundation of Ashtaadhyaayee Around 50 publications, around 60 conference /seminar/ workshop papers. Consultancy to numerous culture research and theater and dance innovation projects. Scores of creative writing works for Classical Dance, Modern Theater and magazines. Several series of talks and other programs on Radio and Television channels.


Dr. Koenraad Elst

Oriental Philologist & Historian

Dr. Koenraad ELST (°7 Aug. 1959, Leuven, Belgium) is not, as those who rely on the Wikipedia have been led to believe, a "right-wing Hindutva activist". None of these three, he is actually an Oriental Philologist & Historian from the Catholic University of Leuven: MA Sinology, MA Indology, MA Philosophy, PhD Asian Studies. He has sustained himself with political journalism, as foreign policy assistant in the Belgian Senate, and as visiting professor in Indo-European Studies at the Indus University in Ahmedabad; but his main vocation has always been independent research and writing. He is the author of 30+ books and numerous articles on mainly issues of democratic freedoms and language policy in both India and Europe; the ancient and modern history of India; and the fundaments of Asia's world views. A sample of papers is readily available at:


Sri Manish Maheshwari

Manish is an independent researcher on Indology and Indian intellectual history. He is also a scholar-in-residence at Indica. His current area of focus is yoga and the siddha tradition of medieval India, particularly the origins of Nātha yoga lineage. Prior to this, Manish worked as a financial analyst at Investment Management firms in New York and Mumbai. He holds graduate degrees from Columbia University (New York) and Mumbai University.


Dr. KTS Sarao


Professor Karam Tej Singh Sarao received the degrees of BA (Hons) in History with Economics, MA (History), MPhil (Chinese and Japanese Studies) and PhD (Buddhism) from Delhi University. He was awarded the prestigious Commonwealth Scholarship in 1985 to study at the University of Cambridge from where he received his second PhD in Archaeology in 1989. He began his teaching career in 1981 at Delhi University’s KM College. In 1993, he joined the Department of Buddhist Studies, Delhi University as a reader where in 1995 he was selected to occupy a professorial chair. Professor Sarao has been a visiting fellow/professor at Dongguk University (South Korea), Chung-Hwa Institute of Buddhist Studies (Taiwan), Sorbonne (France), Cambridge University (UK), Visvabharati (India), and PS Royal Buddhist University (Cambodia). Some of his recent publications are Buddhism and Jainism: Encyclopedia of Indian Religions (Springer, 2017. Jointly with J.D. Long), The History of Mahabodhi Temple at Bodh Gaya (Springer, 2020), Baku’s Temple of Eternal Fire: Its Connections to Baba Nanak and the Udasi Sadhus (Bloomsbury, 2021). In 2011, the PS Royal Buddhist University, Phnom Penh, conferred the degree of Doctor of Letters (Honoris Causa) on him. On the occasion of the Independence Day, 2018, the President of India conferred on him the Certificate of Honour for outstanding scholarship in Pāli Language. The Ministry of Culture, Government of India conferred the Vesak Citation of Honour (वैशाख सम्मान प्रशस्ति पत्र) on him for the year 2020.


Sri Rajath Vasudevamurthy

Assistant Professor, B M S, Bengaluru

Dr. Rajath Vasudevamurthy is an Electronics Engineer by training and is passionate about Indian Knowledge Systems with a keen interest in language, philosophy and history of Science. He has obtained his B.E. from R.V. College of Engineering and Ph.D. from the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru. He has also worked as a researcher at the Pennsylvania State University, State College, USA for a year and also at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden for six months. He is currently serving as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Electronics and Communication Engineering at B.M.S. College of Engineering, Bengaluru and takes special interest in propagating Indian Intellectual heritage among Engineering students through the AICTE student induction program.


Sri Megh Kalyanasundaram

Director, Special Projects, INDICA

Megh Kalyanasundaram is an Indian citizen with close to nine years of lived experience in China, an alumnus of ISB and is currently Director - Special Projects at Indica. His professional experience includes stints as a Market Leader at a Global Fortune 40 firm, as Head of Business Development at a leading Indian talent development multinational and he has served a term on the Board of a Shanghai-based not-for-profit. His academic research interests, and over 20 papers (see Google Scholar link, span some aspects of ancient Indian chronology, Indian Knowledge Systems, Landscape in Indic texts, Ancient Indian Jurisprudence, Ideas of India and Philosophy. He was part of an academic institutional engagement (with ICHR, amongst others), through citizen mechanisms, that was followed by six changes to the history narrative of Ancient India found on the National Portal of India. His recent research-based music compositional album 'Bhārata and her Kāśmīra - 6 Sanskrit songs with lines from 6 Indic Sanskrit texts before 13th c. CE' was recently accepted for listing in the Government of India Ministry of Culture's music application Sangam Music.


Dr. Vishwa Adluri


Dr. Vishwa P. Adluri is a Professor in the Philosophy Department at Hunter College, New York. He holds Ph.D.s in Philosophy (New School for Social Research, New York), Indology (Philipps University, Marburg), and Sanskrit (Deccan College, Pune). Prof. Adluri’s work focuses on the reception of ancient Greek and Indian thought in modernity. He is the author of three monographs (Bloomsbury, OUP, and Anthem); four edited volumes (Brill, Bhandarkar Oriental Institute, and de Gruyter); and numerous articles and essays. Prof. Adluri is a recipient of Sanatana Dharma Foundation’s Swami Dayananda Saraswati Dharma Rakshaka Award, Dharma Civilization Foundation’s Swami Vivekananda Research Fellowship, the Guru Swami Sahananda Book of the Year Award, the Pandit Satwalekar Award for Contribution in Sanskrit and Art, and Hunter College’s Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching. He has been interviewed by Open, Swarajya, News18, Social Research, and IndiaFacts. As a core doctoral faculty member at the Hindu University of America, Prof. Adluri guides its “Texts and Traditions” concentration. He teaches courses in Indian philosophy, Vedānta, the Sanskrit epics, ancient Greek and Western philosophy, and theology.


Dr. Joydeep Bagchee


Dr. Joydeep Bagchee is a core doctoral faculty member at the Hindu University of America and a visiting lecturer based in Berlin, Germany. He holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy from New School for Social Research, New York. His areas of expertise are twentieth-century Continental philosophy, German Romanticism, Nietzsche, philology, and the Western reception of Indian thought. Along with Dr. Vishwa Adluri, he is the author of The Nay Science: A History of German Indology (Oxford University Press, 2014) and Philology and Criticism: A Guide to Mahābhārata Textual Criticism (Anthem, 2018). He co-edited the volume Argument and Design: The Unity of the Mahābhārata (Brill, 2016). Dr. Bagchee has taught at Technische Universität Dresden, Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich and has been a fellow at Free University, Berlin. He heads the “History and Method” concentration at the Hindu University of America.


Dr. Kathirasan K.

Dr. Kathirasan K is a leading exponent of both Secular and Spiritual Mindfulness. He was also trained traditionally in Advaita Vedanta by Swami Satprakashananda Saraswati of Atma Vidya Vanam. He holds a PhD in Yoga Philosophy and Meditation as well as being a Certified Mindfulness Teacher (CMT-P), a certification issued by the International Mindfulness Teachers Association (IMTA). He has spoken at many conferences and has authored books on Mindfulness and Advaita Vedanta.


Dr. Kundan Singh

Core Doctoral Faculty, Hindu University of America, Orlando. Florida

Senior Fellow, Hindupedia, Cupertino. California

Vice President, Cultural Integration Fellowship, San Francisco. California

Research Faculty, Sofia University, Palo Alto. California

Adjunct Faculty, California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco. California

A former Core Faculty at Sofia University, Palo Alto, California, Kundan Singh, PhD is currently a Core Doctoral Faculty at the Hindu University of America where he is engaged in developing a completely new field in academia, Postcolonial Hindu Studies:

He is also the Vice President of the Cultural Integration Fellowship in San Francisco and Senior Fellow at Hindupedia, Cupertino, California where he is diligently involved with changing the representation of Hinduism and India in grade-school textbooks in California and across the US. Author of the Evolution of Integral Yoga: Sri Aurobindo, Sri Ramakrishna, and Swami Vivekananda and joint author of Making Children Hinduphobic: A Critical Review of McGraw Hill’s World History Textbooks with Krishna Maheshwari, he has lectured extensively in San Francisco Bay Area and has many academic presentations at international and national conferences to his name. Some of his chapters in edited books are as follows: “Beyond Mind: The Future of Psychology as Science,” “Beyond Postmodernism: Towards a Future Psychology,” “Relativism, Self-Referentiality, and Beyond Mind,” “Relativism and its Relevance for Psychology” and “Sri Aurobindo’s Invalidation of the Aryan Invasion Theory and the Contemporary Western Archeological Evidence.” Some of his articles written for popular press can be found at ( His talks can be accessed at and at