First let us attempt to understand the European angle on Indian History.
Geography: In the map below, I want us to look at the land route from Greece to India, through Istanbul, Turkiye (Turkey), Persia (Iran, Iraq), Gandhar (Afganisthan), Kekeya (Pakisthan)., or Arabia and the Indian Ocean. The British could have heard about us only through the Europeans, who could have only heard of us through the Persians and the Arabians. They had no real direct idea about us. The Spanish being the ‘western most’ Europeans, hoped they could find a sea route to India via the Atlantic Ocean, because they underestimated the size of the earth and they wanted to be free of Arab control. The ‘Mediterranean Sea Religions’ Jews (Judaism – 1500 BC), Christianity (0 BC), and the “Red Sea Religion” Islam (600 AD) are all from the west coast of ancient Arabia. (The Mediterranean coast belongs to Israel now, I want us to focus on geography for a bit and not the political boundaries.)
Why Europeans know Egypt:
The Mediterranean sea closely connects the South of Europe (Spain, France, Italy, Greece etc) to the North of Africa (Morocco, Algeria, Libya and Egypt). It is no surprise that the Europeans are aware of Egypt and accept its antiquity.
The Jews left Egypt around 1500 BC and Jesus is said to have lived there with his parents till King Herod died. So they were familiar with Egypt.
Alexander, Seleucus, Megasthanes : The first Greek Contact
Alexander the Greek did not cross The Sindhu River and the Hindu Kush mountain range in modern Pakisthan.
Plutarch collected Oral Legendsmuch after Alexander’s death and wrote the biography of Alexander.
There are only legends concerning his battle with Porus (Puru) of Kekeya (Pakisthan) with both sides claiming victory. Whoever won, it is clear that Puru not only retained his kingdom but also got a piece of Taxila, which allied with Alexander. Is it because Alexander lost the battle OR because the man who slaughtered his own mercenaries after the battle was all of a sudden generous in victory, unlike in Persia and Egypt?
Either way Alexander went back, and his general Seleucus lost another battle before concluding a treaty with Sandrokottus.
The net effect of this is that to Europeans, India became “real” only after Alexander. Since they believe only their legends and not ours, they dismiss everything before Alexander as mythical with the single exception of Buddha’s birth. Which is a pity! Annoying but a pity nevertheless. The real pain is our Macaulay affected mainstream historians to whom anything that the Europeans say is gospel and anything that Indians say is a myth. :( :(