Slogans like Congress-mukt Bharat not part of RSS lexicon, says Mohan Bhagwat

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat being presented with a turban at a book release function in Pune on April 1, 2018.   | Photo Credit: PTI

There was no place for political discrimination in the vision for a united India, said Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat on April 1, stating that it was “improper” to use the terms Congress-free India or Sangh-free India.

“Nation-building cannot be the work of one man. It has to be inclusive, requiring the contributions of both the ruling and the Opposition parties,” said the RSS Sarsanghchalak, speaking at a book launch in Pune’s Balgandharva Rangmandir. Six books authored by Ministry of External Affairs official Dnyaneshwar Mulay were launched at the event. Mr. Mulay is currently secretary (consular, passport, visa and overseas Indian affairs) with the MEA.

“These [phrases like Congress-mukt Bharat] are political slogans… it is not in the parlance of the RSS. The word mukt (free or liberated) is used in politics and not part of the Sangh’s lexicon. We never use the language of excluding anyone,” said the RSS chief, in contrast to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s remarks in the Parliament in February when he said he was pursuing Mahatma Gandhi’s dream of a Congress-mukt Bharat.

Mr. Bhagwat’s remarks, which underscored what he called the inclusiveness of the Sangh, came as a veiled rebuke to both Mr. Modi’s, and the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s, call for a Congress-mukt Bharat, as well as the slogan of the Left-Ambedkarite parties calling for an RSS-free India.

Sundeep Waslekar, president of the Strategic Foresight Group, who was present on the occasion, observed how both organisations — the Congress as well as the RSS — were old and remarked that it had taken considerable efforts and struggle for both institutions to be built. “The question is how to work with differing ideologies and seek a path towards problem resolution,” Mr. Waslekar said.

Mr. Bhagwat, speaking in response, said that the Europeans had mastered the art of taking the Opposition along with them. “We have to take everyone along in the process of nation-building even if our thoughts do not agree. We need persons with a positive approach to bring about change, else we will fall prey to conflicts and divisions,” Mr. Bhagwat said.

He further said that the essence of Hindutva was having faith in oneself, one’s family and the country.

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Printable version | Dec 3, 2020 2:25:59 PM |

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