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Mainstream, VOL LVII No 32 New Delhi July 27, 2019

It is Sanghi Rashtravad indeed!

Sunday 28 July 2019

by Hargopal Singh

Assorted minds, big and small, continue to rack their brains to interpret the results of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. There is virtually a spate of opinions which widely diverge. Undoubtedly the BJP, led by the Narendra Modi-Amit Shah duo, had a cake-walk in these elections. Its landslide victory in large parts of the country is unprecedented in ways more than one. So far no non-Congress government was ever repeated; it has taken a quantum jump this time. Jubilation in its ranks is fully justified.

Let there be no mistake about it. Let us not miss the wood for the trees: the Hindu Rashtravadi forces, spearheaded by the RSS of which the BJP is the political wing, are in absolute control of the state power at the level of the Union of India, that is, Bharat. As is well-known, the RSS, since its inception in 1925, has been striving first to “Militarise Hindus, Hinduise India” and later establish a Hindu Rashtra in the country.

It was exactly at that period in the history of our country when Mahatma Gandhi had emerged as the undisputed leader of the Indian National Congress founded four decades earlier. Under his leadership the party was able to bring together all sections of the people, irrespective of religion, creed, colour, caste, region etc. It became the mainstream organisation to lead the masses to achieve independence from the British colonial rule. Nationalism was its pantheon which commanded unqualified loyalty and dedication of all and sundry in the party.

Right from the beginning, the RSS was, of course, successful in dividing the Hindus in particular along Sanghi Hindus and non-Sanghi Hindus. But non-Sanghi Hindus were not necessarily anti-Sanghi ones. That was true of some of the prominent leaders in the Indian National Congress also. The glaring examples are Madan Mohan Malaviya and Lala Lajpat Rai. Both of them happened to be the Presidents of the Indian National Congress at one point of time. Such leaders continued to be present even under the stewardship of Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi.

What was actually needed was the projection of such stalwarts as the Nationalist Hindus against Hindu Nationalists.

Nationalism in post-independence India required an altogether different orientation for the reconstruction of the country and the rejuvenation of her people. Jawaharlal Nehru did his best to accomplish that during his lifetime. His successors, however, forgot his warning that the RSS was the biggest threat to the unity and integrity of the nation.

What we witnessed in the 2014 and 2019 elections did not happen all of a sudden. Its formal beginning had been made in 1967 when Samyukt Vidhayak Dal governments were formed in more than half of the then existing States of the Union of India. The SVDs were constituted of mainly the Bharatiya Jan Sangh, the earlier version of the BJP, the Socialists and the Communists. This experiment was done at the call of Dr Rammanohar Lohia, a strong Socialist leader. As a matter of fact it was he who propounded the theory of anti-Congressism. Later it became the most popular political line of all the major parties. It suited most the Jan Sanghis but the Communists were not left behind because a trend among them had been visible since 1942 during the period of the ‘Quit India’ movement and later followed by B.T. Ranadive, one-time CPI General Secretary, in 1948.

In the meantime there was hardly any political party which did not join hands with the BJP to defeat the INC. Just like the BJP the Communists of all hues regarded the Congress as the main enemy. To cite a couple of examples: The CPM-led Left Front and BJP joined hands to install the Janata Dal-led V.P. Singh Government in 1989 while in 2012, not far from 2014, the CPIs, CPM and BJP’s top leaders were seen embracing one another at Jantar Mantar, New Delhi during a protest rally against the INC-led UPA Government of Dr Manmohan Singh. This cooperation continued until the BJP Government was placed safely at Delhi.

The Indian National Congress can be held guilty for inadequate appreciation of the RSS threat and inept leadership to combat it. That was why it continued to yield space to Right reactionary nationalism and miserably failed to prevent the BJP from coming to power at the Centre. It did make efforts to wean away some of the parties from the anti-Congress line and did succeed also.The example of the UPA Government between 2004-2014 is an example in point. The Communists, nonetheless. were the real facilitators of the process throughout their history.

There was, however, one exception. The United Communist Party of India, rather the Unknown Communist Party of India, formed in 1989 under the leadership S.A. Dange and Mohit Sen, had consistently maintained that the RSS was the real enemy of our country and her people.

With the decimation of the Congress and the elimination of the Communists, the BJP might feel safe and secure but the country is on the brink of disintegration. The nation is facing that future both horizontally and vertically.

The concept of a Hindu Rashtra is self-destructive. A part claiming to be the total whole is deceptive and illusory while the part poised against the whole is suicidal. Besides nobody can stop the claim of Sikh Rashtra, Christian Rashtra and another Muslim Rashtra et al.

There is definitely space for preventing the BJP from reaching its goal of establishing a Hindu Rashtra if, and this is a big IF, the nationalists transcending all political boundaries join heads and constitute a Front from the Panchayat and Municipal to the National level to expose the implications of the Hindu Rashtra in general and the way Rashtravad is being pushed by the Hindu Samrat, Narendra Modi. Nationalists everywhere have ample material knowledge and material to do so. No political party, the least, the Indian National Congress, alone can save the country from the menace posed by the Mohan Bhagwat-Narendra Modi-Amit Shah trio.

Hargopal Singh is a Member, Political Committee, United Communist Party of India.

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