‘Militancy coming back to Kashmir because of wrong policies pursued in the past 10 years’

Indians can’t sleep in peace because of Pakistan and China, and the two nations’ intentions are not hidden from anyone, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat said on Wednesday.

Delivering his keynote address at the ‘Vijayadashami Utsav’ which the RSS organised here, he said: “In such a situation, thousands of posts are vacant in our armed forces. Our armed forces are not properly equipped; we don’t have proper infrastructure on our borders; and communication facilities are also not very good. The controversies surrounding the armed forces in the last few years have definitely affected the morale of our forces.”

“China has come close to our north-eastern border, building roads, airports and rail lines,” though it did not face any threat from India, he said. “Shouldn’t we be careful about this? We [the Central government] know all these things but nothing is being done. Infiltration is a common thing in the north-eastern border; fake currency and drugs are also carried into India,” he said.

He said the country’s maritime boundaries had also become vulnerable. The government did not take any clear stand in respect of many islands. “Even smugglers from Somalia can take shelter in these areas. So, all the borders should be properly guarded.”

“China has created its base on all sides… It is also discouraging other countries from joining hands with India. But we don’t seem to be acting on this front,” he said.

As for the Kashmir issue, Mr. Bhagwat said: “The condition there was better 10 years ago. But in the past 10 years, we [the government] have encouraged and appeased separatist tendencies; as a result, militants have started their activities again in the Valley.

“The people who are sent there as interlocutors speak the language of separatists. For vote bank politics, separatists and militant ideologies are being supported… and the pain of Hindus… is being neglected. Due to this ‘Ulti Neetia’ [the wrong policies]… the situation has become much more problematic now,” Mr. Bhagwat said, without naming either the Congress or the Central government.

On the recent violence in Assam, he said that through the border along the north-east, Bangladeshi citizens entered India. This influx had sparked many minor conflicts all these years, but this year a severe clash broke out. “Three lakh people have been displaced and none is disclosing the exact number of deaths. Even after all this, we are not learning anything, still continuing with old policies. We don’t even speak on these issues. The northeast could go the Kashmir way if the government continued with ‘Ulti Neetia’.” The only thing that prevented this was the presence of the security forces and the strong will of Indian citizens living in these areas, he said.

On Ayodhya issue

On the Ayodhya dispute, he said: “The Central and State [Uttar Pradesh] governments planned to acquire the land attached to Shri Ram Janmabhoomi for building a ‘Muslim structure.’ But when people posed questions, they abandoned the idea. The matter is in court and Vishwa Hindu Parishad members are meeting people to form a law for it. If a Ram temple is built there, the dispute will be over. But a ‘Shadayantra’ [conspiracy] is being planned to garner votes in the upcoming elections. Because of self-interest, some people do not think about the country and carry out anti-national policies.”

On FDI

The UPA government’s decision to allow FDI in multi-brand retail would result in “our small retailers and traders” losing their livelihood and putting the country’s food security at risk, he said. The government was also trying to put our pension funds in the hands of foreigners. Reforms were being brought in without any discussion. There was also an attempt to make the Right to Information Act ineffective through amendment, he alleged.

Mr. Bhagwat admitted that some Swayamsevaks were part of the ongoing corruption campaigns and lashed out at the media for being interested only in “negative news.”

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