The debate on the RSS ban was truly informative (“The RSS ban, and how it was reversed,” Oct. 16). Vidya Subrahmaniam’s response to S. Gurumurthy was spot on. Right-wing organisations are masters in the art of tweaking historical facts to their advantage. The practical wisdom of Sardar Patel who tried to subsume the RSS within the Congress to contain its activities should not be interpreted as tacit support for the organisation.
No microscopic study is needed to see that the RSS has never delivered on the promises that really mattered — abjuring secrecy and restraining from violence.
The question is not whether the lifting of the ban on the RSS was conditional or unconditional but whether the RSS decided to stay apolitical or not. It encouraged members of all political parties to join the organisation promising that it was apolitical in nature and a cultural front that believed in Hindu nationalism. This way it sought to deflect the government’s attention away from its activities. The last 60 years of its existence clearly reveal that it has an agenda that it does share in public. But its activities expose its designs.
It is clear that the RSS directs the BJP. The fact that L.K. Advani was dumped in favour of Narendra Modi despite being considered the tallest leader in the BJP exposes its false claims of being apolitical.
Ms Subrahmaniam is quite right when she says Patel had a “complex” relationship with the RSS. The Sangh and commentators like Mr. Gurumurthy conveniently sweep this fact under the carpet to claim that Patel was a supporter of the RSS.
It is an open secret that the BJP is tied to the apron strings of the RSS. For all political purposes, the RSS uses the BJP as a facade for achieving political power by proxy.
Everybody will agree that the RSS has never entered direct politics. It cannot be concluded that the organisation wants to make a backdoor entry into politics or orchestrate the developments in the BJP. It only acts as a catalyst.
Ramanathapuram S. Narayanan,