So his entire speech was all about Akbar, and he apparently did not know that Akbar, the Akbar he praised, is remembered today fondly by Hindus and despised by Muslims. And at one point he even described "Ashoka and Akbar" as Muslim leaders. Ashoka was no Muslim. Could I really have heard him say that? Not possible. No, I suppose anything is possible, especially if Dalrymple shows he has missed entirely the main point about syncretistic Akbar, has not understood the whole point of his later rule, and why he is revered by Hindus and despised by Muslims, though some may now invoke his name to show that “Muslims are tolerant.”
No, Dalrymple’s idiocy about Akbar will live on forever, on the tape made of the other evening, forever made available online with a single click, to haunt him, to mock him, to serve as proof that Dalrymple the historian of Mughal India, “internationally-acclaimed,” is unsteady when it comes to possibly the most important figure in Indian history during the entire Mughal period.
Ibn Warraq, in one of later replies, notedtoo quickly, alasthat Akbar was no Muslim, and it was clear, according to observers, that Dalrymple was nervous, that he knew he was out of his depth.[Dodging Islamic Apologistics Of Classic Bait And Switch]