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Published On: Tue, Sep 18th, 2018

If Muslims Not Welcome, It is Not Hindutva: RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat

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New Delhi: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat speaks on the 2nd day at the event titled 'Future of Bharat: An RSS perspective', in New Delhi, Tuesday, Sept 18, 2018. (PTI Photo) (PTI9_18_2018_000191B)

New Delhi: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat speaks on the 2nd day at the event titled ‘Future of Bharat: An RSS perspective’, in New Delhi, Tuesday, Sept 18, 2018. (PTI Photo) (PTI9_18_2018_000191B)

NEW DELHI :   Seeking to define how RSS works and allaying apprehensions of minorities in the country, Mohan Bhagwat on Tuesday said “inclusivity” is an essential part of the right-wing organisation and that if Muslims are not welcome in a Hindu nation, it is not ‘Hindutva’. He also emphasised on how the organisation believes in the power of the Constitution.

Bhagwat said today that “Hindutva” means inclusivity and accepting Muslims is a part of it. “Hindu Rashtra doesn’t mean there’s no place for Muslims. If we don’t accept Muslims, it’s not Hindutva. Hindutva is Indianness and inclusivity,” he said,  Speaking on the second day of a three-day conclave that is being organised by the RSS at Delhi’s Vigyan Bhavan, Bhagwat said, “A ‘Hindu Rashtra’ doesn’t mean there’s no place for Muslims. The day it becomes so, it won’t be Hindutva. Hindutva talks about one world family.”
Bhagwat also narrated an instance of felicitating Sir Syed Ahmed by Arya Samaj in 1880s at Lahore. He said that when Sir Syed was introduced as the first lawyer from the Muslim community, he took umbrage on being introduced as such. The RSS Sarsanghchalak also spoke on how the organisation aims at uniting the entire society.Coming to politics, Bhagwat asserted that the organisation never asks its volunteers to work for any particular party but does advise them to back those working in the national interest.
Bhagwat’s comments sought to distinguish between its functioning and the work of the BJP, which is seen to be ideologically affiliated to the organisation with many top leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, having an RSS background. He said there is a perception that the RSS plays a key role in the functioning of a particular party, a reference to the BJP, because of the presence of many of its workers in that organisation, but it is wrong.
“We never ask swayamsevak (volunteer) to work for a particular party, we do ask them to back those working in national interest. RSS keeps away from politics but has views on issues of national interest,” Bhagwat said. He said the Sangh believes the centre of power should remain as envisaged in the Constitution and that it considers it wrong if it is not so.
On the first day of the three-day conclave “Bhavishya Ka Bharat — An RSS Perspective” on Monday, Bhagwat said the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) does not seek domination and is indifferent to who comes to power. Bhagwat launched an unprecedented outreach in a bid to allay apprehensions about its ideology on Monday and had asserted that RSS is “most democratic” and not dictatorial.

Bhagwat also tackled Rahul Gandhi’s recent comparison of the RSS with the Muslim Brotherhood. “The Sangh talks of a global brotherhood. This brotherhood envisages unity in diversity. This is the tradition of Hindutva. That’s why we call it a Hindu Rashtra,” he said, without referring to the Congress president. He also said the aim of the Sangh was to unite the entire society. “Since the birth of the Sangh, it has decided to stay away from politics. It will neither contest elections, nor participate in electoral politics. RSS functionaries cannot be office bearers of a political party,” he said.

The RSS of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh is the ideological mentor of the ruling BJP. Its  “Bhavishya ka Bharat – an RSS perspective” conclave is being seen by many as a rare outreach by its chief Mohan Bhagwat, who surprised his audience on Day 1 by praising the role of the Congress in the freedom movement. “Congress played a big role in the freedom struggle and gave India many great personalities.

The RSS chief also said yesterday: “Hindutva binds us together and our vision of Hindutva is not to oppose or demean anyone.” Today, Mr Bhagwat also sought to distance the organisation from any political role saying the Sangh has views on national issues but does not interfere in the government’s functioning.
“Often people make this speculation that a call from Nagpur (RSS headquarters) must be behind a particular decision (of the government). This is all baseless. All those working (in the government) are seniors and they are far more experienced in politics than us,” said the RSS chief, asserting that “They are our Swayamsevaks, but are capable of doing their job.” (With Agency Inputs ).


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