HARROWING FREEDOM OF RELIGION


HARROWING FREEDOM OF RELIGION
Freedom of religion cannot be denied to any one is the hallmark of the Indian constitution. To this effect the word secular is inserted into the preamble of the Indian constitution and the state is declared to be a secular state. The religious neutrality of secularism and secular state is often criticized by communally oriented organizations. The critics also belittle the existing form of secularism as western and propose a positive secularism based on Hinduism. There is still an outcry, as to the inclusion of the word propagate in article twenty five of the Indian constitution for it can lead to the claim that it guarantees the freedom to convert a person from one religion to another. Another issue connected with this and currently vogue in public debates is conversion. Many Hindu organizations oppose conversion and yet they themselves practice it with different names.
            This chapter mainly focuses on the role of Hindutva forces’ efforts in thwarting freedom of religion and trying to implement Hindutva ideals, which are disturbing to any plural society. In order to deny the plurality of life in India they have twisted every thing possible.  This is obvious in their perception of the word Hindu, Hinduism and Hindustan.   Their attempts are more visible from the coining and content of the expression Hindutva and the activities of Sang Parivar.

3.1 Hindu
In order to understand the intricacies of Hindutva forces against religious freedom in India let us explain the viewpoints of Hindutva proponents in defining the word Hindu, how communal meaning is attributed to the term Hindu and how the attributed meaning is emphatically pursued, their own development of Hindu history, and the demands they make on the basis of these constructs.

3.1.1Definition
M. S. Golwalkar writes about the complexity of defining the word Hindu as “all the sects, the various castes in the Hindu fold, can be defined, but the term ‘Hindu’ cannot be defined because it comprises all.”[1] No doubt it is a complex one. Before going to analyze the religious use of the terminology one thing needs to be noted is that originally the term was used with geographical implications and now it is used purely in the religious sense. It is also to be remembered that the word Hindu was used only to denote the people who lived near the Indus basin and it was never used for the whole of India.
The fact that originally the word Hindu was not used with a narrow religious connotation to denote the so called Hindus in the religious sense but used with wider geographical connotation to indicate the people residing in and around Indus river is vivid in the comments of Jawaharlal Nehru on Vincent Smith’s narrow usage of the word. He writes “the word ‘Hindu’ does not occur at all in our ancient literature. The first reference to it in an Indian book is, I am told, in a Tantrik work of the eighth century A.C., where Hindu means a people and not the followers of a particular religion. But it is very clear that the word is a very old one, as it occurs in the Avesta and in old Persian.”[2]
According to Ram Puniyani also, “initially the term Hindu began with regional tones. The term was coined by Arabs and others, who pronounced ‘S’ as ‘H’, and to denote the people living on this side of Sindhu (Indus) they called them Hindu. It is only much later that this term was bestowed with a religious meaning.”[3] Loading the term with much religious meaning to include a variety of religious communities is risky in a context like India and if it is willfully done its communal intensions are glaring.
It is generally agreed, including the Hindutva proponents, that the word Hindu is a degenerated form of Sindhu and it is the contribution of the Persians.  Savarkar, considering the possibilities of the degeneration writes “the letter‘s’ in Sanskrit is at times changed into ‘h’ in some of the Prakrit languages, both Indian and non-Indian.”[4]  He confirms the Persian origination of the terminology as “and then we actually find that the Vedic name of our nation Sapta Sindhu had been mentioned as Hapta Hindu in the Avesta by the ancient Persian people. Thus in the very dawn of history we find ourselves belonging to the nation of the Sindhus or Hindus and this fact was well known to our learned men even in the Puranic period.”[5]
Taking clue from the Persian contribution to the derivation of the term Hindu, it is claimed that even before the usage of the term Sindhu the word Hindu was in vogue. According to Vinayak Damodar Savarkar ‘so far as definite records are concerned, it is indisputably clear that the first and almost the cradle name chosen by the patriarchs of our race to designate our nation and our people, is Sapta Sindhu or Hapta Hindu and that almost all nations of the then known world seemed to have known us by this very epithet, Sindhus or Hindus.[6] Although admitting it as a conjecture he emphasizes that the word Hindu was older than Sindhu. For him, ‘Hindu would be the name that this land and the people that inhabited it bore from time so immemorial that even the Vedic name Sindhu is but a later and secondary form of it’.[7]
The communal tinge of the implication of defending the earliest possible use of the term Hindu is conspicuous when the Hindutva proponents out rightly deny any possibility of Arabian invention of the term Hindu. It is strongly asserted that, “long before Mohammad was born, nay, long before the Arabians were heard of as a people, this ancient nation was known to ourselves as well as to the foreign world by the proud epithet Sindhu or Hindu and Arabians could not have invented this term, any more than they could have invented the Indus itself. They simply learnt it from the ancient Iranians, Jews, and other peoples.”[8]
The simple fact that is very clear from this painstaking derivation of the term ‘Hindu’ is that the Hindu fundamentalists, although claiming to be larger in number, suffer from inferiority complex. Their aim to show that they are superior to the Arabs and they are prior to the Muslims are stated, as “the fact is that the word Hindu dates its origin not from the Mohammedanized Persian but from the ancient language of Iran, the Zend, and then the Saptasindhu meant Saptasindhu alone.”[9]  Although historically the Persians too migrated along with the Aryans, the Hindu fundamentalists have no problem in accepting that the Persians contributed the term Hindu. But they deny any role to the Arabs. This is a standing evidence to say that the Hindu fundamentalists do not want to accept the existence and practice of any other religion than the newly customized Hinduism, although its present from is the amalgamation of Aryan and native Indian religious elements.
M.S. Golwalkar also accepted the derivation of the term and writes “we find the name Sapta-sindhu in the oldest records of the world- the Rig-Veda itself- as an epithet applied to our land and our people. And it is also as well known that the syllable ‘S’ in Sanskrit is at times changed to ‘H’ as in some of our Prakrit languages and even in European languages. And thus the name Hapta –Hindu and then ‘Hindu’ came into currency. Thus Hindu is a proud name of our own origin and others learnt to denote us by it only later on.”[10] He again writes “and the name ‘Hindu’ derived from the river Sindhu, has been associated with us in our history and tradition for so long that it has now become our universally accepted and adored name.”[11] Further he claims, “in all that we do, in our behavior and in all walks of our life, that stamp of positive conviction should be vividly manifest. This is the prime responsibility that rests upon us.”[12] Still further “the name ‘Hindu’ carries with it the fragrant memories of all those great lives, their deeds and their aspirations. It has thus become a word that at once reflects the unity, the sublimity and the specialty of our people.”[13]
            M.S. Golwalkar’s acceptance and further elaboration of the substance of the word also prove that he has a plan in mind. It looks that the proponents of Hindutva wanted to establish that theirs was the only religion existed in India from the beginning. It is unfortunate that they are unable to declare and accept the faith and practices of the people who lived in India even several centuries before the arrival of the Aryans in India. It is not that they do not know or they do not remember but only do not accept other religions and people following such religions. Disallowing freedom of religion to others has become their means to achieve political power in the recent days.
Harping on the question whether the term Hindu was used in limited geographical sense or religious is out of place as now there are two terms-Hindu and Indian to denote the religion of a group of people and to denote the nation as a whole. While things are clear, going back to find irritant materials to divide the people is unprofitable and non-constructive. It is not substantial to use a limited geographical expression “Hindu” to include the people of whole India. Similarly it is untrue to say that Hinduism, which is the combination of several Aryan and indigenous elements was the only religion existed in India. It is more erroneous to argue that people who do not subscribe to such way of thinking are not Indians. This is nothing but obstructing the civilized society to have the freedom to choose and follow a religion of their choice on the grounds India means Hindus and their religion was Hinduism.
Identifying the Aryans as invaders is not to the liking of the Hindutva advocates. It is viewed as ‘forced’ into them. M.S. Golwalkar remarks about such identification as “they suggest the name ‘Ārya’ or ‘Bharatiya’ in the place of ‘Hindu’.”[14]  In order to conceal and subjugate the foreign origin of Aryans it is claimed “the word ‘Hindu’ alone connotes correctly and completely the meaning which we want to convey.”[15] The Hindutva ideologues want to convey new meaning to the natives and they do not want to accept the name given to them by the natives. Nevertheless the Hindutva promoters look for superiority claims to their ideology through unfounded myths and beliefs. This is glowing in their conception of Arya. It is said “some time, in trying to distinguish our people from others, we are called ‘the enlightened’ –the Āryas- and the rest Mlechhas.”[16] The use of the term Arya is a marriage of convenience at the cost of the self-respect of the original inhabitants of this land.

3.1.2 Building on the Attributive Meaning of the Term Hindu
The Hindutva proponents wanted to capitalize on the accidental and unscientific usage of the term Hindu. According to Savarkar “as it stands at present the word Hindu has come to be the very banner of our race and the one great feature that above all others contributes to strengthen and uphold our racial unity from Cape to Kashmir, from Attock to Cuttack.”[17] This is not a true statement. India is not the home for any single race. Plurality is her beauty. To hoodwink this fact a false imagery is created that all Indians belong to one race rather than graciously acknowledging that all citizens of India are Indians.
It is vainly assumed that the term Hindu will some day be used to denote the religion and the people of this country. The horrifying implication is that only those who call themselves, Hindu alone are entitled to be in India and not the other communities. The mixing of religion and state is willfully done so as to propagate a false ideology. This notion is implicit in the statement “it may be that at some future time the word Hindu may come to indicate a citizen of Hindusthan and nothing else; that day can only rise when all cultural and religious bigotry has disbanded its forces pledged to aggressive egoism, and religions cease to be ‘isms’ and become merely the common fund of eternal principles that lie at the root of all that are a common foundation on which the Human State majestically and firmly rests.”[18] This is the impossible direction towards which the entire Hindutva energy is directed. The very thought of such an impracticable idea is injurious to the fabric of Indian life.
The partisan, divisive, disharmonious and communal agenda is very clear in the definition of the term Hindu. One such definition is ‘a Hindu is he who looks upon the land that extends from Sindhu to Sindhu –from the Indus to the Seas as the land of his forefathers - his Fatherland (Pitribhu), who inherits the blood of that race whose first discernible source could be traced to the Vedic Saptasindhus and which on its onward march, assimilating much that was incorporated and ennobling much that was assimilated, has come to be known as the Hindu people, who has inherited and claims as his own the culture of that race as expressed chiefly in their common classical language Sanskrit and represented by a common history, a common literature, art and architecture, law and jurisprudence, rites and rituals, ceremonies and sacraments, fairs and festivals; and who above all, addresses this land, this Sindhusthan as his Holyland (Punyabhu), as the land of his prophets and seers, of his godmen and gurus, the land of piety and pilgrimage.”[19] In nutshell Hindutva looks for a common nation (Rashtra), a common race (Jati) and a common civilization (Sanskriti) where it is naught. This is done not according to the facts but according to their own whimsical thinking.
This is the dangerous situation that the Hindutva forces are creating and persuading people to fall into. Although this will not materialize, the efforts of these forces in trying to imbibe such notorious ideals always create unrest in the society. It causes hatred and enmity in a plural society. From the point of this study it also goes against the constitutional provision of the freedom of religion.
According to Savarker “the Hindus are not merely the citizens of the Indian state because they are united not only by the bonds of the love they bear to a common motherland but also by the bonds of a common blood. They are not only a Nation but also a race-jati.”[20] Hindutva fans cannot forget that all the Indians are not Hindus in the way the word is used in the religious sense. When people are divided on caste basis and disallowed to interact with each other and purity pollution concepts are imposed, where is the possibility for looking for common blood?  This is a villainous effort to exploit the patriotic spirit of the Indian citizens. Imbibing Indian nationalism is constitutional and justifiable. But asking for Hindu nation in a country, which proudly upholds the reality of plurality of religion, culture, language, race, etc. is determined aberration to the sanctity of the nation. The intrinsic agenda is to deny plurality of religious affiliation so that other factors like plurality of language, race and cultures can be easily undermined.
The good will and harmonious nature of sober people who identify with different religious and cultural traditions particularly celebrating festivals is misinterpreted as “we have feasts and festivals in common. We have rites and rituals in common.”[21]
Beyond these feasts and festivals and rites and ritual there is an attempt to identify a common culture and language, as “we Hindus are not only a Rashtra, a Jati but as a consequence of being both, own a common Sanskriti expressed, preserved chiefly and originally through Sanskrit, the real mother tongue of our race. Everyone who is a Hindu inherits this Sanskriti and owes his spiritual being to it as truly as he owes his physical one to the land and the blood of his forefathers.”[22] This notion is erroneous as India is home for many languages and cultures. Sanskrit is unknown to the vast majority of the Indian citizens and finding a single Indian culture is simply not possible at all in a geographically multifaceted nation like India.
The simple agenda of the Hindutva group is to force a homogeneous India at the cost of unity in diversity. This has direct effect upon the nation as a whole and each and every section of the people of India in particular.
The Hindutva interpretation of Hindu is not acceptable to vast majority of people following different strands of faith traditions. Even in the most corrupt form, the word Hindu does not include majority Indians. This nefarious interpretation is aimed at creating communal hatred and disharmony and to divide people so that political ends may be achieved.
In spite of variations within Hindu traditions and inequalities among the Hindus, the pretentious declaration that there is one religion, race, language, culture, etc. is peculiar to the Hindu fundamentalists. Swami Dharma Theertha writes, “no other people have shown greater tenacity in clinging to ancient abominations than the Hindus. No other people deny justice and humanity to their own kith and kin, their own religionists and compatriots, without rhyme or reason as the Hindus do even to-day.”[23] As long as the spirit of communal disharmony and social inequality runs through the veins of cerebrum with the ulterior motive of conquering power, all that they propose and force will be a subject of grave concern.
Their claim for a superior culture is under attack as “the present generation of Hindus has hardly anything to justify the superior airs which some of them assume when they talk of Hindu culture.”[24] The fundamentalist themselves should know that their superiority claims are untrue and unacceptable. The fallacy of cultural superiority is highlighted as “the claim of superior culture is an utter false imposture and a clever manoeuvre, with the help of ancient books and theories, intended to conceal the hideousness of Hindu life and the brutality of its caste masters.”[25]

            Although obtaining political power is the main thrust, the Hindutva ideology upholds and sanctifies the caste system. On the basis of Purusa Sukta it is argued that “this means that the people who have this four fold arrangement, i.e., the Hindu People, is our God.”[26] Rather than regretting for the ill effects of caste in the Indian society, its sanctification confirms that the Hindutva agenda is not liberative rather enslaving.  It is not harmonious but divisive.

Caste is even mixed with the idea of service. The Hindutva notion is that those who serve others should continue to do so for generations together and such a degraded life shall be pleasing to God. Hence it is said, ‘in our culture, the spirit of social service has been sublimated into worship of God’.[27] If the higher castes too serve the lower ones that will be meaningful. But in the Hindutva plans only the lower castes need to serve the higher ones. This is stated, as “service to humanity is verily service to God. This has been a special feature of our philosophy of life.”[28]    
The Hindutva forces are not asking to just accept caste system but consider it to be part and parcel of life. This is decoratively presented as “once our life becomes soaked with this true spirit of service, we will feel that all our individual and family possessions, however abundant they may be, do not really belong to us. These are only the means to worship God in the form of society. Our whole life will then be an offering in the service of society.”[29]
While every one decries the evil of caste, the fundamentalists make it as dharma. It is said “our definition of dharma is twofold. The first is proper rehabilitation of man’s mind; and the second is adjustment of various individuals for a harmonious corporate existence, i.e., a good social order to hold the people together.”[30] For them “…the establishment of dharma means the building of an organized social life wherein each individual has realized his oneness with others in society and is imbued with a spirit of sacrifice to make others’ material life richer and happier, and develops spiritual strength which leads to the realization of the Ultimate Truth.”[31] The supreme form of upholding discrimination is put, as “pulling of swadharma and transplanting something else in its place will only result in utter chaos and degeneration.”[32]
The danger is originally the word Hindu was used to denote a group of people living in a particular geographical locality and hence it cannot be used to the whole of India. Secondly loading the word with religious substance and saying that India had only Hinduism is another threat. Thirdly, it cannot be ignored, that using the word Hindu in the ecumenical sense may go well with the proponents but the fact that many sections of the religious communities do not wish to be included under the name Hindu. Fourthly using an unfound and historically unclear word to discriminate people adhering to different traditions of faith orientations is the most dangerous discrimination that the world could bear. Fifthly using such notorious definition to gather political gains is undermining the wisdom of the people and intended to create disharmony and hatred among people.
Further, under such unclear term looking for common festivals, language, culture, blood etc or meant to terrorizing the minds of people and no way constructively helpful to the nation or even to the votaries of the so-called Hinduism. One thing is obvious that the Hindutva group wants to divide the people. Earlier they divided on caste grounds. Now they wanted to divide on religious grounds. Along with this they wanted to create disharmony and inequality in the society. The intimidating nature of the Hindu fundamentalists is echoed in their perception of History as well, besides the efforts of defining the term Hindu.

3.1.3 Hindu History
The fundamentalists’ notion of Hindu history is distorting. According to them Hindus do not have a beginning. It is claimed, “in a way, we are ‘anadi’, without a beginning.”[33] They also claim “we existed when there was no necessity for any name.[34] Added to this eternal existence is their assertion for a superior race that “we were the good, the enlightened people.”[35]
The flimsy ground of their Hindu history is exposed as they begin it from the hero of the epic Ramayana called Rama. Savarkar writs “the day when the Horse of Victory returned to Ayodhya unchallenged and unchallengeable, the great white Umbrella of Sovereignty was unfurled over that Imperial throne of Ramschandra, the brave, Ramachandra the good, and a loving allegiance to him was sworn, not only by the Prince of Aryan blood but Hanuman, Sugriva, Bibhishana from the south- that day was the real birth-day of our Hindu people. It was truly our national day: for Aryans and Anaryans knitting themselves into a people were born as a nation.”[36] The acceptance that the Hindutva ideology acknowledges the foreign origin of the Aryans is noteworthy.  But it is dangerous that they want to un-account for the original people of this land and begin their history abruptly.  They want to make the history of Aryans at the expense of the natives. Natives are already considered as secondary class knitting together with them. This is a damaging activity that the proponents of Hindutva are deliberately doing. Many Indian indigenous writers have rightly identified this intriguing nature of Hindu history. 
Having admitted that the Aryans have come from beyond the borders of India, now they take pride in annihilating and subordinating the native people. They also claim superiority to the natives because they have assimilated the natives in to their system. It is said “the day on which the patriarchs of our race had crossed that stream they ceased to belong to the people they had definitely left behind and laid the foundation of a new nation-were reborn into a new people that, under the quieting star of a new hope and new a mission, were destined by assimilation and by expansion to grow into a race and a new polity that could only be most fittingly and feelingly described as Sindhu or Hindu.”[37]
The irony of this claim is that the real Indians have become unpatriotic and secondary citizens in the country of their own and the invading Aryans have become real patriots and first class citizens in a nation where they came for their survival. The mockery is that the Aryans force their way of life on the original people of this nation and ask them to leave the country if unable to accept.
Not realizing the fact that the Aryans are settlers in India and the term Hindu is unspecific, it is contented that “we are Hindus even before we emerge from the womb of our mother. We are therefore born as Hindus. About the others, they are born to this world as simple unnamed human beings and later on, either circumcised or baptized, they become Muslims or Christians.”[38] First and foremost is the fact that we are all Indians first and our religion is secondary. Religion is a matter of choice. It is a fact that many have accepted different religions depending on the social and existential necessities. Freedom to choose a religion of one’s own choice is the sign of civilization. The process of civilization is something unacceptable to the Hindutva ideology.
            In the narration of their partisan and divisive history the fundamentalists take shelter under the constitution as  “it is clearly written in our Constitution that the term ‘Hindu’ includes Sikhs, Jains and Buddhists which means that the expression ‘Hindu and Sikh’ is opposed to the constitution.”[39] Sunita Gangwal also observes this point.[40]But the fundamentalists should know that these religious communities have a distinctive identity of their own entirely different from the Hindu. Again the travesty is that the fundamentalists do not accept and respect the fundamental rights in relation to freedom of religion guaranteed in the Indian constitution to the entire citizens of this nation.
            That is why they call the natives and sons and daughters of the soil as Mlechhas while claiming for themselves a superior place. They do not want to correct and nullify the divisive caste system but say, “the root cause of our national tragedy then, a thousand years ago, and now, a thousand years later, is the same-the utter lack of organized and unified life among the Hindus, the children of this soil.”[41] That implies all should follow the religion of the fundamentalists and not the religion of their convenience and choice.
The plain agenda of this foreign force is to divide the nation on caste basis. They are successful in that. Now their next agenda is to divide the nation on religious grounds, which they are trying hard. M.S.Golwalkar makes it explicit that “the conclusion that we arrive at is that all those communities which are staying in this land and yet are not true to their salt, have not imbibed its culture, do not lead the life which this land has been unfolding for so many centuries, do not believe in its philosophy, in its national heroes and in all that this land has been standing for, and are, to put it briefly, foreign to our national life. And the only real, abiding and glorious national life in this holy land of Bharat has been of the Hindu People.”[42] Although they are successful in creating communal riots and mass killing in the name of religion their dream will never be realized in India.
            The fundamental forces are bent on developing religious history particularly Hindu religious history rather than plain Indian history. This they do to perpetuate and instill communal hatred in India. Savarkar alludes to a Hindu history where the fundamentalists will be interpreted as saviors of this nation.[43]As their agenda in attempting to define the term Hindu was to divide people and create a fake uniform Hinduism, so also their attempt to create Hindu history.

3.1.4 Hindu Demands

Many of the demands of the Hindu fundamentalists are without having any consideration for other people, religions and culture.  One of their demands is to have a Hindu state which if accomplished would have disastrous consequences to a nation like India. To this effect they falsely accuse the magnanimity of the great souls, which toiled for a secular state. For example, Nehru is accused as “Hindus feel that Nehru accepted transfer of power in 1947 on behalf of Hindus but cheated them of their dues and refused to make a Hindu state of India.”[44]
With the good and prudent sense of purifying the society, many cruel practices were abolished in India even by British and subsequently by other competent political authorities.   But the Hindu fundamental forces want to keep the people under darkness and want to exploit their ignorance and innocence and hence all corrective steps are interpreted as partisan. It is stated, “while state has interfered with the religion of the Hindus and its practice, it has left alone minority religions, and the personal laws of the minorities.”[45]
The fundamental forces are no way willing to correct the evils that are perpetuated in the name of religion. Some time it is superstition and at other times inhuman and torturing practices. Their design to keep this nation as a non- progressive one is obvious in their laments as “in no period of India’s political history the Hindus felt more frustrated than in the post-Independence era. For in this period in the name of reform there have been more interference with their way of life and observance of their religious customs, usages and rituals than even during the muslim period. Hindu marriage and succession laws were changed, untouchability and Sati were abolished and Hindu temple were thrown open, and the big temples were brought under state management.”[46] All the corrective and enlightened ways of life have been treated as damaging Hindu religion. It is clear that they wanted the people to live in darkness and backward condition so that systematic subjugation is always in operation.
To continue their cruel, inhuman and unenlightened practices they ask for a Hindu nation. In the words of Pannalal Dhar, “Hindus further feel that to save their identity from extinction it is necessary to establish Hindu Rashtriya.”[47] This is nowhere possible but out of some complex this kinds of issues are always brewed and kept alive to disturb the peace and development of the nation.
Another demonic and bloody demand is to assume that many churches and mosques are constructed upon the debris of Hindu temples and hence those places need to be restored back to the Hindus. For example “Hindus now demand return of those sites on which Hindu temples once existed.”[48] This is nothing but well planed strategy to destabilize the nation with the hidden plan of attaining political power. This is a costly affair. Whenever such attempts took place there were heavy lose of life, property and the exchequer of the nation in terms of police, military and investigation. It is clear beyond doubt that the Hindu fundamental forces are bent on keeping the nation in utter darkness and leading the mass into confusion and loss.
            The single strategy of the Hindu fundamental forces is to divide and discriminate people for the purpose of grabbing power. This is apparent, in their attempt to define the term Hindu, developing Hindu history and placing Hindu demands. At this juncture it shall be convenient and in place to analyze their understanding of Hinduism from the point of their opposition to freedom of religion in India.

 

3.2 Hinduism

Many Hindu fundamentalists are of the view that the word Hinduism is not to their liking. According to Savarkar ‘if there be really any word of alien growth it is this word Hinduism and so we should not allow our thoughts to get confused by this new-fangled term’.[49]
Nevertheless they have a specific content to this term. In their view “any definition of Hinduism that leaves out any important section of our people and forces them either to play false to their convictions or to go outside the pale of Hindutva stands self-condemned. Hinduism means the system of religious beliefs found common amongst the Hindu people.”[50] This is to say that all Indians are Hindus and hence should subscribe to the Hindu religious principles. This point is reiterated, as “Hinduism is a word that properly speaking should be applied to all the religious beliefs that the different communities of the Hindu people hold.”[51] To make Hinduism all encompassing the fundamentalists sweep down to reduce one of the chief tenets of Hinduism as “therefore the Vaidik or the Sanatan Dharma itself is merely a sect of Hinduism or Hindu Dharma, however overwhelming be the majority that contributes to its tenets.”[52] Similarly, to put the fundamental ideas forward the universally accepted expression Hindu Dharma is reduced to a minimum bearing as “Hindutva is not identical with Hindu Dharma; nor is Hindu Dharma identical with Hinduism.”[53]
The fundamentalists are of the view that Hinduism comprises of itself varieties of faiths and practices. Their aim to include other systems of beliefs and practices under the nomenclature Hinduism cannot be admitted because many religions emerged as protest against the caste and other evil and oppressive elements in Hinduism. It is a fact that the primal, tribal and folk religions do not fall under the umbrella of Hinduism but the fundamentalists want to bring them also under the list. Similarly Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism. These religions too emerged as protest against the Brahmanical systems.
At the same time, in order to disseminate Hindutva principles a Hindu is attributed with so many qualities and Hinduism is viewed as conveying only the religious nature of the Hindus. That is why it is said, “Hinduism is only a derivative, a fraction, a part of Hindutva."[54] Again it is asserted that Hindutva is not identical with what is vaguely indicated by the term Hinduism.[55] It is very clear from their own utterances that there is no connection between Hinduism and Hindutva and Hindutva is an ideology, which includes Hinduism also. It is surprising that Hindutva supersedes Hinduism in its desperate attempt to control power in India.
This is very significant to note that the Hindu fundamental and communal forces are trying to impose an ideology on every one. This ideology is colored with so many compartments like-religion, culture, nationalism, language, blood relationship, etc. This is a serious threat to the integrity of the nation.
Another crafty idea is that Hinduism is only a part of Hinduness. It is stated, “had not linguistic usage stood in our way then ‘Hinduness’ would have certainly been a better word than Hinduism as a neat parallel to Hindutva. Hindutva embraces all the departments of thought and activity of the whole Being of our Hindu race.”[56] This is in fact laying foundation for the heinous communal and political ideology of Hindutva.
The civil society sees the plots of these fundamentalists from different perspective. It has criticized and rightly pointed out the false claims of the Hindu fundamentalists as “the pre-modern Hinduism was not a monolithic religion, as being projected by the Sang Parivar, but was a juxtaposition of multiple religious sects.”[57] This fact cannot be denied. Romila thapar also has made reference to this effect: “Thapar calls Hinduism, currently being propagated by Sangh Parivar as ‘Syndicated Hinduism’.”[58]
The plan behind reformulating meaning to commonly used terminologies is remarked, as “the attempt of this exercise is to present a modern reformed religion. The net result is a repackaged Brahminism.”[59] The comment is correct. Their ultimate aim is to gain political power to implement these traditional, orthodox, fundamental and communal programs. As religion could sentimentally play significant role in fetching votes the fundamental forces are committed to polarize the society as Hindu and others. That is provoking one community over the other. The connection and differences between the terms Hinduism and Hindutva shall be cleared as we analyze the term Hindutva.

3.3 Hindutva
Although the expression Hindutva appeared in many places, it is the right place to discuss it elaborately. At the outset it is a fundamental and communal ideology. The fundamental and communal nature of the Hindutva ideology in the words of Noorani is “as for ideology, since it is rooted neither in economics not in politics but in the religion of the majority community, Hindutva is inherently divisive and not susceptible to compromise.”[60] No doubt Hindutva is rooted in the religion of the majority community but it is not bereft of economic and political assumptions.

 

3.3.1 Derivation and Definition

An analysis of the derivation and definition of the expression Hindutva help understanding its context and content. To begin with “it was Savarkar who, in 1923, gave substance to the neologism “Hindutva” or Hinduness in his book, Hindutva: Who is Hindu?[61] To put this in proper perspective “the combination of ‘Syndicated Hinduism’ with nationalism was brewed by Vinayak Damodar Savarkar who can be called the first exponent of the doctrine of Hindutva.”[62]
In general “Hindutva is a derivative word from Hindu.”[63] But it is different from its derivative, Hinduism.[64] It implies that the word’s content is vast. It is clear from the statement that “Hinduism is only a derivative, a fraction, a part of Hindutva."[65] The proponents of this terminology do not want to equate the term even with Hindu Dharma, which is again a very comprehensive term.[66] In short Hindutva is not Hinduism, it is not Hindu Dharma, but comprises all these and many more. The more close expression to Hindutva  is Hinduness.
The all inclusive nature of the expression Hindutva is put as “the ideas and ideals, the systems and societies, the thoughts and sentiments which have centered round this name are so varied and rich, so powerful and so subtle, so elusive and yet so vivid that the term Hindutva defies all attempts at analysis.”[67] A vast meaning is attributed to this expression as “Hindutva embraces all the departments of thought and activity of the whole Being of our Hindu race.”[68] That is why “Savarkar argued that geography, race, and culture reveal a commonality, which he identified as “Hindutva”.”[69]
In order to avoid the immediate parochial antecedents of this construct it is maintained, “Hindutva is not a word but a history.”[70] Although it attempts to present an erroneous history, its own history will be useful for us to understand the content of its ideology and also how it is used to obstruct freedom of religion in India.
Ram Puyani traces Hindutva’s history back to the early days of congress. According to him “the early simmering of Hindutva can be seen in the opposition to the secular Congress movement of 19th century.”[71] He also brings out the fact that the parochial interests of some specific groups are behind this ideology. According to him “as Hindutva was emerging as a movement, it was spearheaded mostly by Brahmins. Its support came from the landed aristocracy and some sections of middle classes.”[72] Hence it can be maintained that Hindutva is different from the genuine Hinduism. It is communal and fundamental in ideology and designed to serve certain parochial interests.
The critics of the new invention argue that it is in fact the distortion of the real Hinduism.  J. Kuruvachira writes, “Hiduism is not Hindutva. Hindutva is not the tradition of spiritual practices that we call Hinduism… Hindutva is a total distortion and perversion of Hindu religion and Hindu spirituality. The ideology of Hindutva is an attack on the genuine values which Hinduism profess.”[73] A cursory knowledge of the great values of the Hindu religious tradition will help any one to distinguish between the true Hindu religion and the false Hindutva.

 3.3.2 Essentials of Hindutva

In order to explain the term Hindutva, its proponents have first used the bare definition or connotation of the word Hindusthan.  For them “all those on this side of the Indus who claimed the land from Sindhu to Sindhu, from the Indus to the seas, as the land of their birth, felt that they were directly mentioned by that one single expression, Hindusthan.”[74]On the basis of this they define the first essential of Hindutva as Geographical. In the words of Savarkar, “Hindusthan meaning the land of Hindus, the first essential of Hindutva must necessarily be this geographical one.”[75]
Based on Savarkar’s definition of Hindu and Hindustan Pannalal Dhar writes,   “coupled with this definition of Hindu and Hindusthan, the universality and tolerance which are the principles on which Hinduism is based, constitute Hindutva.”[76] For him universality and tolerance are the second essentials of Hindutva. This universality and tolerance are different from the general ones. In other words it is to proclaim universality without admitting it and propagating tolerance without tolerating others.  To use a Hindutva expression, it is pseudo universalism and pseudo tolerance.
Another two essentials of Hindutva are accepting a common Hindu nation and common Hindu blood or race.[77] More emphatically, ‘a moment’s consideration would show that these two qualifications of one nation and one race –of a common fatherland and therefore of a common blood-cannot exhaust all the requisites of Hindutva’.[78]The impossibility of one Hindu nation and common blood or race was already established.
Ram Puniyani’s summarization of Savarkar’s Hindutva ideology provides the fourth essential of the Hindutva namely ‘common culture’. He states, “thus Hindutva, according to him, rests on three pillars: geographical unity, racial features and common culture.”[79] The risky nature of Hindutva brand of culture is underlined, as “Hindutva is a deviation from all noble ideals of tolerance and acceptance of the Other which are part of the cultural ethos of India. Again, it is an ideology that attacks true Indian culture of pluralism.”[80]  Having characterized a Hindu as one possessing the essentials of Hindutva, Savarkar narrates many more essentials of Hindutva.[81] In nutshell it implies a common nation (Rashtra), a common race (Jati) and a common civilization (Sanskriti). The fact is, the essentials of Hindutva as explicated by its followers are irrelevant to the realities of India.

 3.3.3 Criticisms against Hindutva

Hindutva is an imaginary Hinduism based upon extra-historical, extra-religious resources. It is a political credo. Its traditions are manufactured. It is a method to invent a new identity for the ruling classes. To achieve these ends it uses the language of religious discourse. The attempt of this fundamentalist movement is to impose their (elite’s) interests and programmes of the present, in the language of the past. All these things were put together as:
To begin with fundamentalist Hindutva is not the Hinduism practiced by millions of people. It (the Hindutva) is an imaginary Hinduism which is essentially extra-historical, extra-religious and is a political credo for those who want to make much of the ideology for their political ends. This fundamentalism is neither based on traditional modes of thought nor traditions as they existed. They win over people by propagation of ‘manufactured traditions’. They adopt the gains of modernity, science, technology, weaponry and industrial production. It wants a modern apparatus of life without the necessary relations between human beings, which would give them space to struggle for their rights. In nutshell, it wants to achieve a certain modern culture i.e. the modern production process sans the accompanying space for improvement of human relationships. It is a post feudal phenomenon aimed at inventing a new identity for the ruling classes. It uses the language of religious discourse. Fundamentalism is possible only in Semitic religions. The Semitisation process of Hinduism is going on for the last many decades. This Semitic Hinduism which in fact is the Brahminical Hinduism has discovered The Book in ‘Gita’ and ‘Vedas’; the holy deity in ‘Ram’ from amongst hundreds of contenders for this status, and Acharyas and Mahants as the clergy. The attempt of this fundamentalist movement is to impose their (elite’s) interests and programmes of the present, in the language of the past.[82]

Ramachandra Guha writes, “Sociologists have written of Hindutva as being an attempt to “Semiticize” Hinduism. By this they mean that a previously plural, diffuse, unorganized and even anarchic religion is being refashioned along more formal lines. Hindutva aims to create a clear chain of command, a definite center of authority, where previously there was none.  For Hindus have failed to act as a unified, cohesive community, complains the sangh parivar. They have been hampered by the absence of one holy book, a Quran or a Bible, and the absence of one holy place, a Rome or a Mecca. Ram, and Ayodhya, will be made to step into the breach.”[83] The insincere and pseudo universalism and tolerance of Hindutva cannot miss the attention of any sincere observer.
It is also pointed out that the Hindutva ideology is compared to Hitler’s. According to Shamsul Islam “in fact, Golwalkar as early as 1938 unhesitatingly wanted to model his Hindu Rashtra on Hitler’s totalitarian and fascist pattern….”[84] This view is endorsed by others as “Hindutva is a sub-acute, chronic Fascism of a caste-ridden, post-colonial society.”[85]
Hindutva is also criticized for promoting a certain group of people at the risk of innumerable masses. As Fascism’s core is the middle class the Hindutva’s core is the cash crop farmer, the petty industrialist and multiple segments of middle classes (Bureaucracy, professionals, traders etc.) latched on to the big capital. The imageries of Hindutva are mainly around north Indian upper caste male. Its emphasis is on subtle Brahminism, Brahminical culture, history, literature (Vedas, Geeta) and upholding of Brahminical symbols. Its basic project is to continue their dominant social position vis-à-vis workers, dalits, women, minorities and adivasis. The democratic polity, providing a liberal space gives an opportunity to these groups to struggle for their rights. These groups again wanted to   sustain the declining pre-modern norms of structural hierarchies. [86] Thus, Hindutva is not for the liberation, empowerment and transformation of the underprivileged in the society.
 I. Arul Aram writes, “during Gandhi’s days, the Hindutva brand of politics was a subculture. It had remained confined to a section of upper caste Hindus. It had to go into oblivion in the mid-20th century because of its involvement in the assassination of Gandhi, who had by then evolved as the father of the nation. Later, only with the expansion of the middle class by the 1980s the idea of Hindu religion being the base of nationalism gained wider acceptance.”[87] Others as well affirm this notion like “Hindutva is the political agenda of petty industrialists, sections of middle classes and rich peasantry blessed by capital.”[88] This is proof for the purpose to which Hindutva ideology is created.
To go further deep “Hindutva is a ‘bourgeois device’, a conspiracy by the elites, of certain sections of the upper castes of Hinduism to take control of India’s cultural patrimony and power structure. The ideology nurtures itself on the negative feelings created against certain sections of the Indian society like Muslims, Christians and communists and other secularists, and its ultimate aim is to eliminate them from positions of power and reduce them to a state of being slaves without rights, freedom and dignity, and if possible obliterate them completely from India as they are obstacles to the creation of a monolithic Hindu rashtra. Therefore, success of Hindutva would mean the end of India.”[89] It is a painful truth that the Hindutva ideology aims at success at the cost of many.
The way in which Hindutva ideology has affected the life of the minorities and the underprivileged in this country is pointed out as “in a way, Hindutva came to prominence in 1990s as a counter to the backward class movements and as a Mandal-affirmative action for the backward classes. Time is not far off, when backward castes who would not get assimilated into the upper caste ideology, would assert their identity with more and more backward caste people coming into prominence.”[90] In spite of the options open to the backward communities, it remains true that the Hindutva is against their aspirations.
Even the political notions of Hindutva are criticized for taking advantage of the Indian situation. It is said, “the politics of Hindutva provides the most refined way to impose the rigid hierarchies, and the semi secularized society becomes the fertile ground on which this poisonous weed can proliferate with gay abundance.”[91] In other words Hindutva has learned the art of fishing in the troubled waters.
            One of the false propagation of Hindutva reads, “Hindutva is not a covert attempt to subvert minority religions but a daring attempt to give them back their heritage.”[92] It is evident that the Hindutva uses deceptive propagation to hoodwink the minorities, especially religious minorities in India. Using such misleading presentations the freedom of religion in India is tampered. People are not given an option to choose. On the contrary they are asked to leave the faith of their choice and fall in to the trap of Hinduism, which is a maiden media for the fundamental forces to mesmerize the people. It is very important to note the danger lurking behind the Hindutva, particularly against the minorities, specifically in connection with their religious rights and freedom. Neera Chandhoke writes, “whereas the liberal leadership under Nehru designed secularism to assure the minorities of fair play and justice, today hindutva has been substituted for secularism.”[93] This is a dangerous trend.
People who are committed to the secular values of the country even decry the supreme Court Judgment that “by concluding that the term ‘Hindutva’ was not in and of itself an appeal to religion, nor an expression of enmity or hatred towards other religious groups, but simply the way of life of Indian people, the Supreme Court has obscured the historical background as well as the contemporary political context within which the term has acquired meaning.”[94] The main motive of liquidating the other communities from this land and if not to treat them as second-class citizens or no people through ideology, politics and intimidating propagations are already clear. Its success in this direction is put forward as “Hindutva has created communal frenzy even in those States where communal relations were relatively harmonious.”[95] One of the ways in which Hindutva functions is through communal hatred and religious disharmony.
            Another main agenda of the Hindutva ideology is to be intolerant towards other religions. This is the medium of infiltrating communal politics. It is observed, “Hindutva, often synonymous with “cultural nationalism,” excludes other religious beliefs and promotes religious intolerance. With the return to power of the Congress in 2004, communal politics and cultural (Hindu) nationalism have taken a back seat.”[96] The lesson that we learn is a secular and democratic political orientation is the only alternative to the Hindutva ideology.       
The deep concern over the increasing activities of Hindutva is painfully stated as “today Hindutva has assumed the form of a powerful extremist, militant, malevolent movement operative in the country.”[97] This is not in keeping with the secular values of this nation. Such distortion will have considerable impact upon the programs of the religious minorities in India.

3.3.4 Hindutva Agenda
            It is unambiguous that Hindutva symbolizes religious antagonism and it thwarts religious freedom in India.  For example “Savarkar propounded that struggle for supremacy would begin after British left and that the Christians and Muslims were the real enemies who could be defeated only by “Hindutva”.”[98] Apart from the religious constrains it poses to the minorities it also tries to strangle the marginalized. Ram Puniyani writes, “Hindutva affects many sections of society, its target group is not just the minorities, though one of them (Muslims) has been the major recipient of its wrath so far, and the other (Christian) is currently on the firing line, the other affected groups are workers: unfortunately a big section of them are unorganized, while women and dalits are being subjugated in more subtle ways.”[99] To reject religious freedom, to suppress the underprivileged and achieve political power a new most dangerous weapon called violence is in operation. For example, “Hindutva has nationalized the violence as a means for capturing state power.”[100] This is the dangerous situation that the Hindutva groups love to strengthen in India.
Hindutva’s religious tinge is only crocodile’s tear but the main agenda is to bring about unjust and unequal society. Religious flavor is only to evoke religious sympathy and to create mass communal violence focused at winning elections so as to constitutionally implement their dreaded policies. That is why it is said, “this religiosity of Hindutva is a mere facade for a more comprehensive societal reconstruction, which is very materialistic in nature.”[101]
            The ideology of Hindutva are Mainly against the secular values of the state so that freedom of religion can be deprived and people will be blindfolded to the pre-civilization. In the words of J.Kuruvachira “Hindutva is India’s Achilles heel on her way to progress, development and peaceful co-existence of various communities. It is the enemy within the nation which gnaws into its secular and pluralistic structure. It is an ideology which proclaims that it does not want India to be secular, multi-religious and multi-cultural. With the results of the general elections of 2004 Hindutva is obviously tamed but definitely not defeated. The war against the vicious ideology must go on.”[102] These are the warning signals to the enlightened people who are committed to secularism and democracy.
The only way to fight this evil is to side with secularism. That is why it is said, “the tough communal questions require a secular response. It is necessary, therefore, to project secularism in its purity and uncompromising nature so that not even the so-called ‘soft Hindutva’ is tolerated.”[103] The perfect path to maintain a pure freedom of religion in India is to respect the constitutional provisions and create space for translating those principles in practical situation. But for the constitution the Minorities in India would have reduced to the level of slaves. It is the constitution that has helped the minorities to uphold their rights and privileges in India.
  
3.4 RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh)
            Hedgewar a congress person founded in 1925 a nationalist organization called the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the Association of National[ist] volunteers. Although his organizational skills and contacts with like-minded people from his sort of background (Maharashtrian  Brahmins) built up the RSS,  its ideological development came with his successor, Madhav Sadashiv Golwalkar. He provided a systematic articulation of the RSS’s ideological grounds and aims in his work of 1939, We, or Our Naionhood Defined.[104]
The formation of the RSS was for a specific purpose. It is said “the RSS’s primary aim was to foster within society those aspects of thought and conduct that would integrate and unite Hindus.”[105] In other words all the Hindutva agenda are propagated and implemented by RSS and its offshoots called Sang Parivar.
From the beginning RSS had wrong conceptions about other religious communities to the extent of suspecting their patriotism. For example “Hindutva communalists started projecting that only Hindus would free Hindustan, that only Hindu strength can lead the country and so Hindu youth had to be organized on the basis of personal character and absolute love of the motherland. This was the backdrop against which Hedgewar along with some other upper caste Brahmins founded the RSS (1925).”[106] The divisive ideology on the basis of religion was in operation from the start of this movement. Mainly their division was on the basis of religion. The basic principle used was to project the minority communities as enemies and unpatriotic and hence they are threat to the nation.
The sympathizers of RSS perceive its function differently. One such perception is that “the RSS motto is to devote itself to nation building activities according to liberal Hindu culture without interfering with the practice of any other religion and without appeasement of any religion.”[107] This is untrue because RSS does not tolerate any other religion except Hinduism. It always projects the other religious communities as traitors. Its political stalwarts always appropriated political gains by creating communal flare-ups and the consequential lose of life and materials.
RSS does not like it to be called by its real nature, communal organization. It accuses people and parties, which are against their evil designs. Even its communal orientation is covered up as “the current aspersions against the R.S.S. mostly by Congress leaders and followers to the effect that it is a ‘communal organization’ and more dangerous to the country than even Communism are a travesty of the fact.”[108]
Its advocates proclaim,  “it is based on a philosophy of national culture and envisages the whole of the nation.”[109] Unfortunately their intellect could not permit them to think that India has not one single culture but many. This is an attempt to absorb and destroy other specific and unique cultures.  Another false propagation is that RSS allows space for the minorities as well. According to M.A. Venkata Rao “the outlook it offers has room for all minorities on condition of their whole-hearted submission to the supreme value of the nation in their lives.”[110]  Portraying, the minority religious communities as antinational is the hallmark of RSS and its Parivars.
The whole agenda of the RSS is based upon false premises. For example “it teaches loyalty and devotion to the national society in the national homeland under the image of the Mother.”[111] It is obscured because there are reliable and real historical evidences to show that every community has sufficiently contributed to the cause of freedom struggle in India. It is nonviable that all should express patriotism only through Hindu symbols.
Another false premise of RSS is persuading other religious communities to venerate Hindu heroes and heroines. In its view “the national identity requires that the whole of national society including minorities should share in the best values of the past. They should appreciate national dharma- the code of ethical principles and ways of life enshrined in the best usage. In cultural history, they should all give their mind and hearts whole- heartedly to an appreciation of the best types. Rama and Krishna may be appreciated by non-Hindus as secular examples while the Hindus will see them as full spiritual exemplars (avatars).”[112] A country, which has inspired millions with her diverse faiths and religious heroes and heroines, is warped to accept that one religious personal and teachings alone need to be revered. 
Another false propagation is that the RSS has no desire for political power. It is claimed, “the Sangh has no demands to make. It does not fight for special rights or privileges. It does not compete in electioneering politics, nor has it any desire to share power.”[113] In reality it is the more power mongering communal organization using bloody communal riots as means to reach quick political power.  This is evident from the approaches the BJP ruled states adopt. Once occupied power, they go against the Indian constitution. Some of the worrisome facets are “Prime Minster of India, Sri Atal Behari Vajpayee, declared himself to be a ‘Swayamsevak’ (Volunteer) of the RSS during his last visit to the USA. The Home Minister of India, Sri L.K. Advani, followed him by declaring that the RSS was the ‘umbilical cord’ for them. He went onto explain that the RSS was to them (the BJP) what Gandhi was to Congress and Nehru. With these affirmation of faith in the RSS, a Sovereign Democratic Secular Republic of India is going to have a bleak future because RSS is not committed to either of these.”[114] This fact is emphatically stated as “just imagine Prime Minister and Home Minister of our country who have taken oath to uphold the integrity of a democratic and secular India are also committed to the task of creating a Hindu Rashtra as per the texts of the Prayer and Oath a must for the RSS cadres.”[115]
The RSS’s disloyalty to the sentiments of this nation and its commitment to communal activities is pointed out as “unfortunately, the RSS which is found of demanding unwavering and unflinching loyalty to the nation from the minorities is neither loyal to the constitution of India, nor to the National Flag.”[116]  In brief the RSS is up against all non-Hindu religious traditions of this land. Yet it pretends to accommodate the minorities in its fold. It hides behind the shadow of a quite Hindu communal nationalism.  Although the usage of nationalism is charitably pressed into service, the RSS does not respect the sentiments and principles of this nation.

 3.4.1 RSS Agenda

RSS’s main agenda is communal, specifically to disturb the Muslim community in India. M.A. Venkata Rao writes, “the national history of the Muslims period should be re-written giving the truth without varnish and all should appreciate the best values exemplified by the heroes of authentic history.”[117] This is to suggest without any respect for history that the Muslims in India were destroyers of the Hindu religion, culture and rule. In other words the Muslims should be portrayed as anti-Indians in contrast to portraying the Hindus as national heroes. This is in fact intimidating the Hindus against the Muslims and gagging the Muslims and other religious communities. This is also aiming at eradicating all other religious communities from India except the Hindus. The Sangh Parivar’s misuse of history is vivid, because ”they have ‘successfully’ misused history to spread hatred against the disadvantaged sections of society in general and minorities in particular.”[118]
RSS’s focused agenda is to provoke one religious community against the other. And this is done not just on caste basis, but on the basis of religion as well. This tendency has been highlighted as  “the hallmarks of its beginning were: (a) Emphasis on physical training, with the understanding that the upper castes have to learn the skills of combat as lower castes are no more reliable in the street combats; (b) A mix of religious symbols like saffron flag and a prayer glorifying motherland; (c) An appeal to the interests of Brahmins, Bania (traditional trader) and upper castes, which also incidentally were, and more or less are, the overwhelming components of the Sangh and (d) Emphasis on indoctrination of young ‘boys’ with the mythified history and anti-Muslim, anti-secular, rabidly pro-upper caste ideas.”[119]
This propensity of the RSS is further underlined as “the doctrines preached mainly centered around past glories of Hindu gods and kings, the atrocities of Muslim rulers, futility of Gandhian methods and the suffering of Hindus due to lack of organization.”[120] There are reasons to even doubt the role of RSS in freedom struggle. Rather it has concentrated on communal interests, for the reason that “RSS in nutshell was not only consciously absent as far as freedom movement was concerned, but on the contrary it was acting from the opposite angle by opposing various movements for freedom struggle (especially Quit India movement). Also it was active as a communal body, boosting the impact of Muslim communalism and participating in the process of mutual supplementation of Hindu and Muslim communalism.”[121] To elaborate again  “the SP had not been a part of freedom struggle; it does not respect Indian Constitution; And does not subscribe to the values of pluralism and multiculturalism, which emerged from the process of building of the Indian Nation.”[122] Even at trying times the main agenda of the RSS was communalizing the events or in other words capitalizing on the confusions of freedom struggle. For example “the Sangh kept aloof from all anti-British struggles but was very visible in all activities related to Hindu- Musllim riots and later, rehabilitation of victims of the riots,”[123]
The above view that the RSS promotes and makes use of communal riots is further confirmed. It is pointed out “the expansion of RSS took place slowly, initially encashing on its ‘successful role’ in the communal riots in Nagpur area and later through the fame of Savarkar’s initial image as a revolutionary. Afterwards a gradual infiltration in educational institutions kept it going.”[124] To be very precise “every tension in Hindu-Muslim relations was misused by RSS.”[125]
The simple agenda of RSS is establishing a Hindu nation without providing room and freedom to other religious communities. According to Ram Puniyani “the core doctrine states that Hindus and Hindus alone constitute Indian nation, since they are the original inhabitants of this great land. Hindus have created this society and its culture. Hinduism is superior to all other faiths since it is tolerant. Unfortunately, this tolerance has been mistaken for weakness and aliens, e.g. Muslims and then Christian British, have repeatedly conquered the Hindu nation. To quell the threats of these alien cultures, Hindus need a Sanghtan (Organization, by implication RSS). The entry of different religion has created a misunderstanding that India is a land of different religions and cultures. People like Nehru, who preferred bondage to alien system of thought perpetuated the concept of composite cultures into the pseudo-secular constitution. Only a ‘truly secular’ Hindu Rashtra can do justice to the rights of Hindus and can protect minorities.”[126] Earlier the RSS started with the hatred of Muslims and now they include Christians and other Minority groups. And all these communities are portrayed as antinational.
            Other than communal agenda the RSS and its affiliates are bankrupt with ideas. This communal frenzy is vivid in all aspects of RSS’s activities. This is apparent from the statement “one gets a clear idea that Sangh Parivar has succeeded in perpetuating a perception amongst Hindus to forge a communal solidarity through elective projections of the past, and this does involve a deliberate reformulation of history. Emergence of nation-state does bring in a homogenization of religion. In case of India this evolution of  “national religion and Hinduism has mainly been defined in opposition to the Muslim ‘other’.”[127] This is an indication that the RSS suffers psychological defeat and hence wants to pride in non-historical matters.
RSS’s main agenda of dividing people on religious grounds is aimed at capturing political power. Hence, “anti-Muslim sentiments were consistently used to project a political methodology of consolidating the Hindus.”[128] In other words “the true object of Sangh Parivar’s desire is not just submission of the Muslims but of state power as a whole, and remaking of India in its own image. It is achieving this by imposing a homogenization on the lines of Brahminical ethos on the society.”[129] The process of executing the communal agenda is that the “RSS trains the cadre in ideology, BJP plays the game on political chessboard, and VHP gives an emotive touch to the communal project by roping in the Sants, Mahants and the NRIs. The Rashtra Sevikasamiti backs up the RSS ideology by taking it in the sphere of home, and the Bajrang Dal translates it in to street violence, which can take off only because of the ground work done by other members of the parivar.”[130] In the words of Ram Puniyani “the communal nature of Sangh Parivar is very obvious even at the very first level of approximation. Its fundamentalist character is easily discernible from its clinging to religious expressions. The proper characterization can come by constantly relating the social roots with the political manifestations of the Sang Parivar.”[131]
The threat of RSS ideology to every segment of the nation is clearly identified and summarized in the following words: “the upholders of the status quo, those who are beneficiaries in the present power equations, propagate the concept of homogenous and harmonious. It is proclaimed, ours is a casteless society, the caste politics is divisive, and we should (the lower castes) overcome the caste psychology, even at a time when caste exploitation is going on at full speed. The woman is given the ‘respectable’ place of ‘mother’, ‘sister’, ‘wife’, and ‘daughter’-relations which the patriarchs exploit to the hilt. The workers are supposed to be doing the productive activity for the ‘nation’ and so should conform to the present exploitative, unjust laws, lest the ‘nation’ will suffer. In this ‘national’ project the unrestricted right of employer to exploit is conspicuous by its silent presence.”[132] In short the RSS agenda is fundamentalist, communalist and no way relevant to the Indian context, which requires a harmonious blend of many religions, cultures, languages and practices towards liberating the underprivileged in the society.

 3.5 BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party)

Although the ultimate design of the Hindutva group is to capture power, they publicly deny such intentions. For example M.S. Golwalkar writes, “the political parties are by nature transitory.”[133] RSS also falsely declares that it is not interested in politics. For example “if in the race for politics we give up society and destroy its inherent unity we will have gone against our fundamental duty.”[134] The fact is that they do not want a mere political party but a one, which will be purely Hindu in the sense of Parivar’s use. This notion is reflected as  “political power shall only reflect the radiance of culture, integrity and power of the organized society that we want to build up- just as the moon reflects the radiance of the sun.”[135] In their idea establishing a Hindu society is prior to establishing a Hindu political party. But the wish to have political control is not completely absent.
Although concealed it is very clear that the BJP is the political incarnation of the RSS’s Jan Sangh, which was the original political arm of the Sang. It has been highlighted, that the political executive of the Hindutva agenda is the BJP. Its political journey was so flimsy. When attained power it was loaded with communal pistols. The communally charged advocates of this principle justify the communal objectives of this political party, like  “as a back-lash against muslim appeasement the Hindus are uniting under a common political platform furnished by the Bharatiya Janata Party.”[136]
BJP, the present political organization of Sang Parivar seeks political mileage by dividing the nation on communal lines. It is said ”its credo- Hindutva- is inherently divisive and splits the nation apart.”[137] In other words the BJP is also against the freedom of religion to the minority communities.
It not only divides people on communal lines but also sees all possibilities to disturb the freedom of religion to the minorities. The implication of such an unjust and undemocratic ideology affects the very foundations of this nation. And it is more painful that such a conspiracy is not yet fully exposed. For example “what is not realized is that the BJP’s ideological commitment and its disruptive tactics pose a threat to the survival of the Constitution and to the democratic parliamentary system.”[138] A.G. Noorani indicates the ways the BJP challenges the very foundations of the nation as “the BJP rejects the idea of secularism on which the Constitution rests, prevaricating about “pseudo-secularism”. Its parent, the RSS, is not committed to the Constitution.”[139]
Ram Puniyani sees BJP not as a plain political party but as the carrier of Hindutva ideology. In his own words “all in all, though Hindutva has played a ‘hide and seek’ expression through Congress, it is the BJP which has been the major and preferred vehicle of Hindutva agenda.”[140] The BJP’s direct patronage of the Hindutva cause is again pointed out thus, “as we have seen, its basic agenda is that of Hindu Rashtra, an idea which is opposite to secular democratic India.”[141] It is clearly demonstrated that BJP works against a viable framework of constitution and its democratic system of functioning.
BJP has the tendency to communally manipulate power. This has become truer in the recent years in its attack against Christianity. For instance, “after BJP’s coming into power at the Centre, the job of VHP and Bajrang Dal became far more easy as now they got a blanket protection and umbrella which would not let the reaction of their crimes hit them back.”[142] In all the recent political programs of the BJP there was always a tinge of communal element.
Even in their political plan freedom of religion is an anathema. The majority chauvinistic tone is always echoed as “all political parties except the BJP have pledged to continue minority rights and only BJP pledges to repeal Art 370 and Art 30 and replace the Minority Commission by a commission for Human Rights.”[143] Having discussed some of the main designs of RSS and BJP in connection with freedom of religion it may now be appropriate to analyze the agenda of the entire Sangh Parivar.

3.6 Sang Parivar’s Agenda in Relation to Religious Minorities
Unfortunately the Sangh Parivar is not committed to social and economic development of India in general as it is committed to religious issues. By heavily indulging against freedom of religion in India it has overshadowed other major issues. It is maintained that “it has changed the language of social discourse, and rights of oppressed and exploited, the real problems of society, have been put on the backburner.”[144]  In the history of India the constitutional provisions pertaining to freedom of religion have helped millions to liberate themselves from the social bondages. This liberative process is put at the rear by the Sang Parivar.

 3.6.1 Minorities

The Sangh Parivar’s main plan is against the freedom of religion of the minorities. Many Hindu writers have veiled this fact. For example M.A. Venkata Rao writes “the outlook it offers has room for all minorities on condition of their whole-hearted submission to the supreme value of the nation in their lives.”[145] To say that the minorities are not fully committed to the nation is a blatant lie. The call is not for common national interest but for Hindu national interests. They use such lies to intimidate and instigate one community over the other.
Again the minority communities are presented as destroyers of the faith and symbols of the Hindus. And the Hindu society is always pictured as national society. According to the Parivar the Muslims, Christians, and Jews etc., have perfect upāsanā swātantrya, freedom of worship so long as they do not seek to destroy or undermine the faith and symbolism of the national society.[146] This is again a willful negative propagation against the minorities.
The Sangh Parivar also portrays the minorities as people committed to convert one religious community into another religion. It is a blatant obstruction to people who prefer a religion of their own choice. This obvious falsification has been framed as “they could bear witness to their faith in life and speech but they should not indulge in any unfair and unspiritual modes of conversion”[147] They always claim that there is forceful conversion, a claim that has no evidence so far. In nutshell, their main agenda is to portray the minorities as disloyal to nation, destroyers of Hindu culture and encouraging conversion.

 3.6.2 Re-invitation

The Sang’s second agenda is re-conversion of people to Hinduism. Although they are against any form of conversion from one religion to another thy want to practice it under different nomenclature. They name it with very fancy names and do it with much aggression and force. The vehemence can be felt from the following rendering as, “it is our duty to call these our forlorn brothers, suffering under religious slavery for centuries, back to their ancestral home.”[148] They consider the ones seeking liberation through conversion to other religions as enslaved people. This is an erroneous interpretation.
The Parivar also represents the liberated ones as missing their original place, like “this is a call for all those brothers to take their original place in our national life.”[149] People who wanted to live with self-respect and dignity are interpreted as losers of the original place. Again it is said “this is only a call and request to them to understand things properly and come back and identify themselves with their ancestral Hindu way of life in dress, customs, performing marriage ceremonies and funeral rites and such other things.”[150] It is a misfortune that the Parivar does not regret for the life long caste oppression that was forced on people and that was used to discriminate and segregate people. Because of caste many have lost education and its consequential economic and other underdevelopments are still visible.
The Sang has used two expressions for their forms of conversion. They can be ascertained from the following that “the shuddhi was more to attract those low castes that had adopted Islam or Sikhism as their religion. The current Gharvapasi campaign of VHP draws it legitimacy from the assertion that Adivasis are Hindus.”[151] One was for ordinary and the other is for the tribals. This is nothing but to keep them under the evil and oppressive social, religious, economic and political structures.
Their hidden agenda in the conversion program is revealed as “Hindutva, which is Brahmanical Hinduism based Nationalism has used the conversions to strengthen Hinduisms’ flanks by co-opting the low castes and Adivasis earlier through shuddhi and now through Gharvapasi.”[152] It is true that the Sang Parivar can make a non-issue as a magnificent one. Conversion is a matter of personal choice. It is a sign of civility and it is an insignificant issue. But this people have manipulated it for their own advantage. For example “what is remarkable is not that conversions as a marginal phenomenon have been a part of Indian reality from ages but the fact that political phenomenon called Sangh Parivar can make an issue out of it even today.”[153] It is clear that a simple and personal issue, conversion, has assumed great significance in the wake of Hindutva propagation.

 3.6.3 Reservation

The Sang Parivar is also committed to curtail all the privileges of the minorities toward social upward mobility and to justify majority communalism. For example they kept a group of people under bondage of ignorance and poverty for several centuries. Now there are steps to bring them up. One such step is reservation. The Sangh Parivar oppose this and claim that  “separatist consciousness breeding jealousy and conflict is being fostered in sections of our people by naming them Harijans, Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and so on and by parading the gift of special concessions to them in a bid to make them all their slaves with the lure of money.”[154] It is a surprise that the Parivar does not promise equality at the same time it misinterprets any endeavor towards that direction.
Asking for equality and justice is twisted as communal. For example  “all such groups who consider themselves distinct from this national ethos and cherish hopes and aspirations in opposition to the national ones and demand separate rights and privileges for themselves are to be called “communal”’.[155] Refusal to accept freedom of religion is fundamentalism and communalism. But here the seekers of freedom of religion are wrongfully called communalists. Any hooliganism committed by the Sang Parivar cannot be addressed as communal. It is said, “the Hindu in Bharat can never be termed “communal”.”[156] The topsy-turvy about-turn of the Sang Parivar is the clear indication of their coveted ideology.
They maintain parochial and unjust claim that only the majority will be recognized and the minorities should always look up to the majority and the minority should not have any thing of their own. The majority communalism is acceptable and not the minority. This wrangling of fact is seen from the view that “the expression “communalism of the majority” is totally wrong and misconceived. In a democracy the opinion of the majority has to hold the sway in the day-to-day life of the people. As such it will be but proper to consider the practical conduct of the life of majority as the actual life of the national entity. From this point of view also, efforts to uplift the life of Hindus is national and not communal. The term “majority communalism” is thus opposed to the spirit of democracy….But under independence, the rule being of majority, to speak of “majority communalism” is opposed to logic, truth and justice.”[157] The Sang Parivar’s open declaration that it practices majority communalism is surely a threat to the integrity of the nation.

 

3.6.4 History

Another agenda of the Sang Parivar is to belittle the history and development of others and to take undue privilege on their own history, however, tailored or fabricated. They are against the ones who suggest that the history of Hinduism is not indigenous. On the contrary the Sang claims that Hindus are the only people who have succeeded in preserving their history- riding through earthquakes, bridging over deluges. It begins with their Vedas which are the first extant chapter of the story of our race.[158] In terms of history all communities have a history.
The Sang also need to remember that the Vedas are not the product of India. It is the contribution of the Aryans. What we call today as Hinduism is the combination of Aryan, Dravidian and many other indigenous religious elements. Therefore there is no reason to assail on the view that one’s history is superior to the other.

 3.6.5 Majority Psyche

The fundamentalist wanted to deny any place to the minorities and hence they invent new form of majoritarian psyche, which is unethical and undemocratic. For example “the basic feature of secularism in UK and USA is that there is no distinction between citizens on ground of religion or form of worship, and that everybody is equal before law and is entitled to its equal protection, but that the religion of the majority community functions from the center of all state activities and presides over other religious sub-cultures.”[159] Coming back to the core issue of freedom of religion the Parivar  want only the majority religion enjoy all glory and the minority ones needs to be overthrown.
Even in the cultural realm they want only the culture of the majority and not the minority. It is maintained “the cultural traits of the Hindus should be accepted in state actions because the Hindus are in overwhelming majority, and so their cultural traits form the national heritage.”[160] This is another unacceptable demand. If any attempts are taken to respect, protect and develop the culture of the minority that shall be a positive effort. Not only at the organizational level this tendency is prevalent but it is also penetrating through the judiciary too. For example “Significantly, the Hindu Right is not alone in this majoritarian approach to freedom of religion. Rather, there are examples running through Supreme Court jurisprudence in which the unstated norm of the Hindu Majority is all too evident.”[161] This is also another grave concern from the point of freedom of religion.

 3.6.6 Partitions

Another unachievable agenda is to revoke partition. In the words of Goalwalkar “if Partition is a settled fact, we are here to unsettle it. There is, in fact, no such thing as a ‘settled fact’ in this world. Things get settled or unsettled solely by the will of man. And man’s will is steeled by a spirit of dedication to a cause which he knows to be righteous and glorious.”[162] The reality is that the Parivar see the possibility of interrupting freedom of religion in this matter as well.
They connect the partitions to the freedom of religion as “even today the tragedy of Partition has not come to a close. Kashmir has been partitioned. And now it appears Nagaland is well on the way.”[163] It looks for them Christianity is the reason for the underground activities in the northeastern states. To that effect they criticize the secular governments as well.

 3.6.7 Positive Secularism

Another agenda of the Sang Parivar against the minority’s freedom of religion is the invention of positive secularism. In this positive secularism there is no appeasement of minorities.[164] It is vivid that the minorities for them are no people and no citizens. The unintelligible new brand of secularism intends to jacket the minorities by the good will of the majorities. This too is undemocratic form of argument.
The Parivar’s intentions can be read from the following that, ‘Nehruvian nationalism was based on minority appeasement to the exclusion of the majority community whereas positive secularism of the BJP envisages welfare of the minorities on the good will of the majority community like the minority welfare has functioned under the majority Christian rule in Christian countries or under the majority Muslim rule in Islamic countries.[165] The absence of progressive thought and the presence of destructive elements in the ideology of the Parrivar are bothersome.
It is also unwise to claim that this brand of secularism was much older. For example it is asserted on the basis of this arrogant brand of secularism that “this assimilation and co-existence in Hindu India could be possible because of the positive secularism practiced in those times in India.”[166] If such secularism truly existed that has to be rooted out. If it is a new invention it’s rooting should not be allowed to gain ground.
However, the Sang Parivar has influenced the society to some extent. The reasons for doing so is “in contemporary India, passion and prejudice are displacing sanity and reason and its agents are organizations like the RSS, BJP, VHP, Bajrang Dal, Shiv sena and other affiliates of the Sangh Parivar.”[167] About the parochial nature of their aspirations, J. Kuruvachira warns “their highest expression of tolerance consists in conceding a subordinate position to non-Hindus devoid of any rights and privileges. But Nehru, who was an uncompromising secularist, was one of the few who perceived the danger involved in the Hindu nationalists mixing religion and politics.”[168] The effort to salvage freedom of religion in India is visible in every letter, word, sentence, paragraphs and pages of religious fundamental forces that are thwarting the fundamental rights. The acts that work against civilization and leading the nation to primordial un-civilization are crime against civilization and culture and development as a whole.

 







[1] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 3rd ed., Reprint (Bangalore: Sahitya Sindhu Prakashan, 2000), 54.
[2] Jawaharlal Nehru, The Discovery of India, Centenary Edition (Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1989), 74.
[3] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar (Delhi: Media House, 2000), 46.
[4] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 6th ed. (New Delhi: Bharti Sahitya Sadan, 1989), 6.
[5] Ibid., 7.
[6]Ibid., 8.
[7] Ibid., 10.
[8] Ibid., 71.
[9] Ibid., 73.
[10] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 98.
[11] Ibid., 55.
[12] Ibid., 59.
[13] Ibid., 98.
[14] Ibid., 97.
[15] Ibid., 97-98.
[16] Ibid., 55.
[17] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 76.
[18] Ibid., 83.
[19] Ibid., 115-116.
[20] Ibid.,, 84. (jati from jan)
[21] Ibid., 98.
[22] Ibid., 99-100.
[23] Swami Dharma Theertha, History of Hindu Imperialism, 5th ed. (Madras: Dalit Educational Literature Centre, 1992),271.
[24] Ibid., 275.
[25] Ibid.
[26] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 6.
[27] Ibid., 37.
[28] Ibid., 57.
[29] Ibid., 37.
[30] Ibid., 44.
[31] Ibid., 45.
[32] Ibid., 65.
[33] Ibid., 54.
[34] Ibid., 55
[35] Ibid., 55
[36] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 12.
[37] Ibid., 29.
[38] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 117.
[39] Ibid., 106.
[40] Sunita Gangwal, Minorities in India: A Study in Communal Process and Individual Rights ( Jaipur: Arihant Publishing House, 1995), 15.
[41] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 215.
[42] Ibid., 154.
[43] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 45.
[44] Pannalal Dhar, India and Her Domestic Problems: Religion State and Secularism
             (Calcutta: Punthi- Pustak, 1993), 111.
[45] Ibid., 117.
[46] Ibid., 108.
[47] Ibid., 111.
[48] Ibid., 107.
[49] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 81.
[50] Ibid., 102-103.
[51] Ibid., 105.
[52] Ibid., 109.
[53] Ibid., 121.
[54] Ibid., 3.
[55] Ibid., 4.
[56] Ibid.
[57] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 48.
[58] Ibid.,
[59] Ibid., 49.
[60] A.G. Noorani, “Fractured Democracies,” frontline (December 1, 2006):84.
[61] C. Ram-Prasad, “Contemporary Political Hinduism,” in The Blackwell Companion to Hinduism, edited by Gavin Flood (Blackwell Publishing, 2003), 527.
[62] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 51.
[63] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 81.
[64] Ibid., 4.
[65] Ibid., 3.
[66] Ibid., 121.
[67] Ibid., 3.
[68] Ibid., 4.
[69] C. Ram-Prasad, “Contemporary Political Hinduism,” in The Blackwell Companion to Hinduism, 527.
[70] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 3.
[71] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 53.
[72] Ibid.,  56.
[73] J.Kuruvachira, Roots of Hindutva: A critical Study of Hindu fundamentalism and Nationalism
( Delhi:Media House, 2005), p. 296.
[74] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 45.
[75] Ibid., 82.
[76] Pannalal Dhar, India and Her Domestic Problems: Religion State and Secularism, 115.
[77] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 90-91.
[78] Ibid., 91.
[79] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 52.
[80] J.Kuruvachira, Roots of Hindutva: A critical Study of Hindu fundamentalism and
Nationalism, 295.
[81] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 115-116.
[82] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 63-64.
[83] Ramachandra Guha, “Hindu Popes: Politics and Play,”  The Telegraph (Calcutta), 6 March 2004, 10.
[84] Shamsul Islam, Know the RSS ( Delhi: Media House, 2000), 29.
[85] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 76.
[86] Ibid., 76-109.
[87] I. Arul Aram, “Media and the Rise of Cultural Nationalism in India,” Religion and Society 51/4 (December, 2006):6.
[88] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 108.
[89] J.Kuruvachira, Roots of Hindutva: A critical Study of Hindu fundamentalism and
Nationalism, 297.
[90] I. Arul Aram, “Media and the Rise of Cultural Nationalism in India,” Religion and Society, 10.
[91] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 109.
[92] I. Arul Aram, “Media and the Rise of Cultural Nationalism in India,” Religion and Society, 5.
[93] Neera Chandhoke, Beyond Secularism, the rights of Religious Minorities (New Delhi:
            Oxford University Press, 1999), 74.
[94] Brenda Cossman and Ratna Kapur, Secularism’s Last Sigh: Hindutva and the (Mis) Rule of  Law (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1999) 34.
[95] J.Kuruvachira, Roots of Hindutva: A critical Study of Hindu fundamentalism and
Nationalism, 296.
[96] I. Arul Aram, “Media and the Rise of Cultural Nationalism in India,” Religion and Society, 10.
[97] J.Kuruvachira, Roots of Hindutva: A critical Study of Hindu fundamentalism and
Nationalism, 297.
[98] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar,  52.
[99] Ibid., 110.
[100] Ibid., 67.
[101] Ibid., 68.
[102] J.Kuruvachira, Roots of Hindutva: A critical Study of Hindu fundamentalism and
Nationalism,294.
[103] Ibid., 295.
[104] C. Ram-Prasad, “Contemporary Political Hinduism,” in The Blackwell Companion to
Hinduism, 529.
[105] Ibid., 529.
[106] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar,  24.
[107] Pannalal Dhar, India and Her Domestic Problems: Religion State and Secularism, 110.
[108] M.A. Venkata Rao, “Introduction”, in M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 3rd ed., Reprint (Bangalore: Sahitya Sindhu Prakashan, 2000), xiv.
[109] Ibid., xiv.
[110] Ibid.
[111] Ibid.
[112] Ibid., xv.
[113] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 172.
[114] Shamsul Islam, Know the RSS , 7.
[115] Ibid., 15.
[116] Ibid., 9-10.
[117] M.A. Venkata Rao, “Introduction”, in M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts,  xv.
[118] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar ,112.
[119] Ibid., 24.
[120] Ibid., 25.
[121] Ibid., 40.
[122] Ibid., 127.
[123] Ibid., 26.
[124] Ibid., 25.
[125] Ibid., 26.
[126] Ibid., 27-28.
[127] Ibid., 50.
[128] Ibid., 50.
[129] Ibid., 68.
[130] Ibid., 69.
[131] Ibid., 72.
[132] Ibid., 75.
[133] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 118.
[134] Ibid., 118.
[135] Ibid., 77.
[136] Pannalal Dhar, India and Her Domestic Problems: Religion State and Secularism, 183.
[137] A.G. Noorani, “Fractured Democracies,” frontline (December 1, 2006):82.
[138] Ibid., 84.
[139] Ibid., 84.
[140] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar,  31.
[141] Ibid., 113.
[142] Ibid., 118-119.
[143] Pannalal Dhar, India and Her Domestic Problems: Religion State and Secularism,          97.
[144] Ram Puniyani, Fascism of the Sangh Parivar, 110.
[145] M.A. Venkata Rao, “Introduction”, in M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, xiv.
[146] Ibid., xv.
[147] Ibid., xv.
[148] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 128.
[149] Ibid., 128.
[150] Ibid., 129.
[151] P.R. Ram, “A Campaign Without Content,” Indian Currents XI/50 (13-19 December, 1999): 46.
[152] Ibid., 47.
[153] Ibid.
[154] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 110.
[155] Ibid., 164.
[156] Ibid., 165.
[157] Ibid., 165.
[158] Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?, 93.
[159] Pannalal Dhar, India and Her Domestic Problems: Religion State and Secularism, 81.
[160] Ibid., 104.
[161] Brenda Cossman and Ratna Kapur, Secularism’s Last Sigh: Hindutva and the (Mis) Rule of Law, 110-111.
[162] M.S. Golwalkar, Bunch of Thoughts, 93.
[163] Ibid.
[164] Pannalal Dhar, India and Her Domestic Problems: Religion State and Secularism, 56. 
[165] Ibid., 120.
[166] Ibid., 159.
[167] J. Kuruvachira, Hindu Nationalists of Modern India: A critical study of the Intellectual
Genealogy of Hindutva. (Jaipur: Rawat Publications, 2006), p.234.
[168] Ibid., 230.

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