November 30, 2014

Modi Govt Unmasked: ‘Development’ Mukhota Discarded

WHEN Narendra Modi won the internal battles and was projected as the RSS/BJP’s prime ministerial candidate for the 2014 general elections, this column had the occasion to state that the RSS had finally decided to discard its “mukhota”. When the prime protagonist of the 2002 Gujarat communal carnage has been assigned this task by the RSS/BJP, it was clear that they no longer required a mukhota to mask the pursuit of their real agenda – the transformation of the modern Indian secular democratic Republic into the RSS vision of a rabidly intolerant fascistic `Hindu Rashtra’. When a BJP led coalition under the NDA first assumed the reins of the central government under the leadership of Atal Behari Vajpayee, the prime minister was described by a then influential RSS ideologue and pracharak as a mukhota. He was, promptly, banished from the Sangh, stripped of all his positions and till date continues to remain virtually as an outcast. All he did was to tell the truth. Atal Behari Vajpayee was the mask the RSS needed then to attract political allies to form the central government. Behind the mask, the RSS relentlessly pursued its agenda. With the BJP now securing a majority on its own under the leadership of Narendra Modi, albeit with a mere 31 per cent of the polled vote, the need for such a mukhota seems to have become unnecessary for the RSS. If any reconfirmation of this was ever necessary, it has now come. Addressing an inaugural session of the three-day World Hindu Congress on November 21, 2014 at New Delhi, Ashok Singhal, VHP leader, hailed Narendra Modi leading the Bharatiya Janata Party to victory in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls and said power had returned to a “Hindu swabhimani (proud Hindu)” in Delhi after eight centuries. “Eight hundred years after it (the power at Delhi) went away from Prithviraj Chauhan, it did not come into the hands of a proud Hindu. It has happened after 800 years” Singhal said. This Congress concluded by giving a call to all “The Hindus …to lead the world by taking a leadership role”. Lest this be understood only as statements by a VHP leader – a rabble rouser – the union home minister himself on November 22 confirmed this unmasking. Rejecting suggestions that this BJP government was being remote controlled by the RSS, Home Minister Rajnath Singh clarified and asserted that there is no such necessity. “RSS is not an external force. I am from the RSS. The prime minister himself is a RSS volunteer. We are (RSS members) from childhood and will remain till we are alive,” Singh said at the recent Hindustan Times Leadership summit. He continued, “When we ourselves are from the RSS, then what influence will it have to wield? One could have understood the argument of any organisation influencing the government if it had a different identity, a different ideology.” Clearly, this is an RSS government. These recent statements must be seen in combination with the RSS chief Mohan Bhagawat’s earlier assertions that like those living in Britain are called British, those living in the USA called Americans, those living in Hindustan are Hindus. He also said that the culture of the people who inhabited these lands of Hindustan have always been that of Hindutva. Amongst the various sessions at the World Hindu Congress, an emphasis was laid on a Hindu Educational Conference on the theme of creating and networking educational resources for civilisational re-emergence (read Hindu re-emergence). Revamping the educational system to promote `Hindu’ values that will assist such re-emergence are already underway. The RSS had always used its control of the central government to change the syllabus and re-write Indian history accordingly. On the earlier occasion, the then HRD minister had sought to revamp the syllabus for school and college students oriented towards the glorification of the `Hindutva culture’. Courses like astrology, vedic mathematics, Vaastu sastra etc etc were introduced. In the name of Hindutva culture, obscurantism and the glorification of “Hindu’s” was introduced as a recurrent theme in all subjects of the syllabus. As if to prove this point, more assertively on this occasion, the present union minister for human resource development has reportedly visited an astrologer to know about her future! This minister today presides over the country’s education ministry which should be committed to the Indian Constitutional directive of encouraging and promoting `scientific temper’ amongst our children through the education system! Such are the times that we are living in today. The recourse to promote obscurantism and religious fanaticism is aimed at buttressing communal polarisation through the spread of hate against the religious minorities particularly the Muslim minorities. Clearly, the RSS/BJP have embarked on a concerted effort to completely change the country’s education system and to make it patently conducive for the propagation and advance of a `Hindu Rashtra’. In order to achieve this objective, as we have noted repeatedly in these columns, the RSS/BJP is adopting a forked tongue policy. For public consumption and in order to create a vote bank for itself, it sharpens communal polarisation on all fronts. Simultaneously, it rouses people’s emotions through a gross misuse of religion through campaigns aimed at sharpening communal poisoning. One can see such polarisation based on spreading hatred against the minorities through various campaigns it is currently engaged in like `love jihad’, endorsing khap panchayats etc. It is this deadly cocktail of creating economic illusions like `development’, `achche din aanewale hain’ etc, on the one hand, and sharpening communal polarisation, on the other, which is the lethal cocktail before our people. Worse, this effort comes along with greater economic burdens being imposed on the vast mass of our people. Our India needs to be saved from the imminent dangers of such a cocktail that is designed to destroy the unity and integrity of our country and the centuries-old fraternity amongst the mass of our people that binds together the rich mosaic of the Indian culture and its syncretic civilisational ethos. For the sake of consolidating “India, that is, Bharat” and for creating a better India for all our people, such designs must be combated and defeated. (November 26, 2014)