Original guest post
by Jai Singh
Further to the previous detailed Loonwatch article about Narendra Modi and the rise of India’s neo-fascist Far-Right, some more facts have surfaced. Readers may be particularly interested in the following:
1. According to Outlook India and Forbes India, the colour photo at the top of this article was taken at a meeting of the paramilitary ultranationalist “Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh” (“RSS”) near Ahmedabad in Gujarat, India in September 2009. Narendra Modi has been an active member of the RSS for the entirety of his political career, and can be seen openly performing a modified Nazi salute alongside a number of his fellow RSS members.
The nature of that salute and the uniforms worn by the RSS members in the photo is not a coincidence. As discussed in the main part of this article further below, the RSS’s core ideology is explicitly and directly influenced by Hitler and Third Reich-era Nazism.
2. Narendra Modi is currently predicted to become 1.2 billion-population, nuclear-armed India’s next Prime Minister. He is campaigning as a member of the Bharatiya Janata Party (“BJP”), which is effectively the political wing of the RSS. In fact, a BJP spokesperson even recently described the RSS as the “ideological fountainhead” of the BJP.
3. A Caravan magazine article from 2012 comprehensively details Narendra Modi’s career trajectory, from his early membership of the RSS, to his eventual involvement with the BJP, to his current role as Chief Minister of India’s Gujarat state. The article includes extensive information on Modi’s specific political manouverings during the course of his career; it is very revealing. As the article also mentions, India’s then-Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vaypayee wanted to remove Modi as Gujarat’s Chief Minister after the anti-Muslim riots in Gujarat in 2002. Vajpayee even publicly admonished Modi for his sectarian and bigoted attitudes.
The article also mentions the following fact: In late 2001, during the tenure of the previous BJP Chief Minister of Gujarat, Modi complained to the senior BJP leadership in Delhi that the CM was “interested only in development, but not advancing the stated goals of Hindutva [Hindu Nationalism]”. This certainly adds weight to suspicions that Modi’s current newfound public emphasis on his alleged interest in “development” may actually be a Trojan Horse for a far more dangerous agenda.
4. The New York Times have recently published an informative article summarising the timeline of the Gujarat 2002 riots and the subsequent sequence of events involving Narendra Modi.
5. The BJP’s recently-released 2014 election manifesto includes a declaration that a Modi national government would reconsider India’s “no first strike” nuclear weapons policy, which was originally implemented by Atal Bihari Vajpayee during the previous BJP government. The Hindu have subsequently confirmed the following: In 1999, the RSS’s mouthpiece Organiser actually tried to convince then-Prime Minister Vajpayee to launch a nuclear attack on Pakistan. Addressing the following directly to Vajpayee, the RSS stated: “Arise, Atal Behari! Who knows if fate has destined you to be the author of the final chapter of this long story. For what have we manufactured bombs? For what have we exercised the nuclear option?“. Vajpayee obviously ignored the RSS’s belligerent statements.
The Hindu’s article also contains details on India and Pakistan’s respective nuclear arsenals, including India’s current plans to significantly increase its number of nuclear warheads. The RSS leadership have publicly backed Narendra Modi as their choice for India’s Prime Minister and simultaneously reiterated that Modi is an RSS activist, and the RSS as a whole have been heavily involved in supporting Modi’s election campaign.
6. The Economist recently published a lead article in which the magazine has formally refused to endorse Narendra Modi as a suitable Prime Minister for India. Amol Rajan, the Indian-born editor of the The Independent has also personally written an article condemning Modi. Furthermore, The Times has published an article warning that Modi will cause huge problems both domestically and internationally; the start of the article also notes Modi’s similarity to Hitler.
7. The Guardian recently published an open letter signed by very senior British lawyers, senior Indian-origin academics at Harvard and the London School of Economics, and a number of famous Indian-origin writers and artists condemning Narendra Modi and warning about the dangers he poses for India. Multiple British Indian academics have written similar letters to The Guardian.
8. The Independent recently published an open letter signed by more than 70 academics (mostly British Indians) at multiple universities in the UK, condemning Narendra Modi and warning about the dangerous ramifications of Modi achieving power in India.
9. Approximately 60 leading figures from India’s Bollywood film industry have signed an open letter warning about the dangers of voting for Narendra Modi. Hundreds of Indian civil rights groups have also mobilised at the grassroots level across India, with the aims of opposing Modi and a possible “communal [sectarian] takeover” of the country, providing a “strong and viable opposition to the forces of fascism at the national level”, and “safeguarding [Indian] democracy and the Indian Constitution”.
10. Referring to Narendra Modi’s role in the Gujarat 2002 riots, many of his apologists and supporters are claiming that he has been “given a clean chit” (ie. exonerated) by India’s Supreme Court, based on the report of the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (“SIT”). However, this claim is completely false. Not only has the Supreme Court accused Modi of being a “modern-day Nero” at the very least, but the SIT’s report can be read in full online here. Amongst other things, the SIT report confirmed that Modi’s Gujarat state government is guilty of destroying a huge amount of incriminating evidence, including completely destroying the records of police communications and government meetings during the riots. The SIT report also confirmed multiple incidents where Modi’s conduct was divisive and prejudiced against Gujarat’s Muslim population; as Gujarat’s Chief Minister, Modi was therefore in violation of his constitutional duty to protect the life and property of every citizen of Gujarat state.
Equally damningly, the SIT report confirmed that Modi’s Gujarat state government assigned an unusual number of public prosecutors involved with the RSS and VHP to cases against people accused of perpetrating the anti-Muslim riots. There have been relatively few convictions compared to the actual number of rioters. Bear in mind that the RSS and VHP were among the main ringleaders of the violence.
Also note that the SIT report confirmed that (a) Modi claimed to have been unaware of the first massacre during the riots (at the Gulbarg Society area of Ahmedabad) for as long as 5 hours after the atrocity; Modi specifically claimed that he only heard about it during a meeting at his house that evening, (b) there were numerous communications between police officers during the course of the siege and subsequent massacre, and (c) Modi was praised for holding a series of meetings with police officers throughout the day in order to continuously monitor the violence. Readers will note the glaring contradiction in this narrative and can draw their own conclusions about the implications.
Furthermore, the Supreme Court also appointed an amicus curiae. Based on the SIT’s own findings, the senior Supreme Court lawyer and former Additional Solicitor General & Vice-President of the Supreme Court Bar Association has recommended that Modi should be put on trial and has concluded that there is indeed sufficient evidence to prosecute Modi on multiple criminal charges, including: (a) Promoting enmity on grounds of religion, (b) Making assertions prejudicial to national integration, (c) Being a public servant disobeying the law, with intent to cause injury to people, and (d) Making statements creating or promoting enmity and hatred. Full details via the Times of India and Tehelka. According to Indian law, guilty verdicts on all these charges would result in Modi being sentenced to up to 10 years in prison.
A case can of course also be made for prosecuting Modi via the International Criminal Court at The Hague and putting him on trial there.
Readers here in the West may be interested to know that multiple British citizens of Indian origin were also murdered by the rioters; a number of British Members of Parliament have correspondingly confirmed their support for prosecuting Modi and continuing to ban him from the UK “irrespective of the results of the upcoming Indian elections until he has been brought to account for his actions in fermenting racial and religious violence and bigotry”.
11. It is worth noting the following fact regarding the attack against the train carrying Hindu pilgrims in 2002, which ostensibly caused the anti-Muslim riots: The people responsible for the attack have never actually been identified. Despite the fact that there was absolutely no evidence of the identities of the perpetrators, at the time Narendra Modi promptly issued a press release declaring “This is not a mere communal event but a one-sided collective terrorist attack by one community [ie. the entire Muslim population]”.
Furthermore, in a foretaste of the depths of barbarity to come, Modi also took the following actions: Instead of treating the victims and their families with respect by handing over the bodies to the grieving relatives, like some twisted medieval king Modi decided to let the VHP publicly parade the burnt, mutilated corpses through the streets of the city of Ahmedabad. Full details via the Indian Express and Kafila.
12. Anti-Muslim riots in Gujarat rapidly ensued. The previous Loonwatch article on Narendra Modi included extensive details on a number of these massacres (readers are strongly advised to familiarise themselves with that article if they have not done so already), but it is worth summarising the following incident too: The first location attacked was the Gulbarg Housing Society, a residential area in Ahmedabad whose inhabitants were mostly upper-middle-class Muslims. One of these properties was owned by Ehsan Jafri, who also happened to be a former Member of Parliament for the Congress party; many of Jafri’s neighbours along with Muslims from nearby areas had gathered at his house too, since it was expected that Jafri’s status as a veteran MP would give them safety. A huge baying mob had gathered outside the housing society, armed with swords, petrol bombs and cycle chains. After they broke into the complex, they proceeded to slaughter 69 of the inhabitants, at least 35 of whom were burned alive. Women were also raped and then killed. Children were not spared either.
Ehsan Jafri himself made numerous phone calls asking for help, contacting Gujarat’s Director-General of Police, Ahmedabad’s Police Commissioner, Gujarat state’s Chief Secretary, and dozens of others. No assistance ever came. Ultimately, Jafri even directly phoned Modi. As confirmed by Caravan and The Telegraph, far from offering assistance, Modi responded by verbally abusing Jafri, and even taunted him by expressing surprise that Jafri was still alive. It was at this point that Jafri turned to his family members and told them that there was no hope of rescue. When the killers finally reached Jafri, they stripped him of his clothes, took him outside, beat him to the ground, and publicly paraded the 72-year-old man naked. They also repeatedly tried to force Jafri to sing Hindu prayers; when he refused, they beat him with swords and incrementally cut off his fingers, hands and legs. The dying & dismembered Ehsan Jafri was then thrown onto a burning wooden pyre and burned alive.
13. Investigative journalists conducted an interview with one of Ehsan Jafri’s killers; an English-language transcript of that interview is available here. Jafri’s horrific murder occurred in full sight of his now-75-year-old wife, who was watching from a balcony; she is still fighting for justice.
14. Referring to the Gujarat riots as a whole, The Guardian confirmed that some of the murderers actually poured chemicals on the victims in order to ensure that their flesh was completely burned off. Furthermore, The Guardian’s own correspondent in India at the time personally witnessed local policemen actively co-ordinating attacks against ordinary Muslims, accompanying the perpetrators as they torched village fields and shooting at the Muslim farmers who tried to stop them.
15. It is worth noting that Gujarat’s state police is under the jurisdiction of Amit Shah, who is Gujarat’s Home Minister and Narendra Modi’s right-hand-man. Like Modi, Shah also has an extensive history of involvement with the RSS. India’s English-language NDTV news channel recently speculated that Shah will be India’s Deputy Prime Minister in a Modi national government. Shah is currently being prosecuted on multiple charges of murder, the illegal surveillance of ordinary Indian citizens, and being the head of an extortion syndicate.
16. Estimates of the number of people killed during the anti-Muslim riots range from 1000-2000. Approximately 200,000 people were also displaced. Narendra Modi’s Gujarat state government refused to relocate the Muslim victims of the riots; Modi even disparagingly described their refugee camps as “baby-making factories”. Furthermore, in an echo of Jewish ghettos in Nazi-occupied Europe, areas of Gujarat with large Muslim populations are now increasingly becoming isolated sites of poverty and deprivation; basic state infrastructure such as water, roads and sewage systems are not being extended to them; in some cases, large garbage dumps of rotting (and potentially toxic & dangerous) waste material from multiple nearby hospitals have been placed near these populations. The New York Times has confirmed this in a detailed article about Ahmedabad’s largest Muslim ghetto, containing 400,000 people.
17. The Indian filmmaker Rakesh Sharma has created an acclaimed documentary about the Gujarat riots and their aftermath, titled Final Solution. The full 2.5 hour film is available online via Youtube here. It specifically draws accurate parallels with political developments in Nazi Germany in the early/mid-1930s. Sharma is currently involved in a high-profile argument with the Bollywood actor Anupam Kher, as the latter was a member of the censor board committee that previously banned Sharma’s film in India; it is worth noting that Kher’s wife [the actress Kirron Kher] is currently campaigning as a BJP politician and is therefore allied to Narendra Modi.
18. India’s total Muslim population is 170 million; the country’s total Christian population is approximately 30 million. It is not just Muslims who are the primary targets of “Hindu Nationalist” extremists; as documented in the main part of this article below, specifically the section discussing the RSS’s core ideology, Christians are also at risk. In fact, as discussed in the previous Loonwatch article and in much more detail in Caravan magazine, Narendra Modi is the main political patron of Swami Aseemanand, a senior RSS leader who was responsible for anti-Christian riots involving mass-murder, forced conversions to Hinduism, the destruction of dozens of churches, and the rape of nuns. Aseemanand is also on record as admitting that the RSS leadership personally authorised a series of terrorist attacks across India, deliberately targeting innocent Muslims for mass-murder.
19. Readers are strongly advised to read this excellent article in The Hindu by Dr Nissim Mannathukkaren, an Associate Professor at a Canadian university. The article eloquently summarises the core moral issues of the situation as a whole, including the spurious nature of the arguments used by Narendra Modi’s apologists; as Dr Mannathukkaren writes in the final paragraph of his article, “Fascism is in the making when economics and development are amputated from ethics and an overarching conception of human good, and violence against minorities becomes banal”.
Furthermore, Cambridge University’s Dr Priyamvada Gopal has written a very good article in The Guardian which succinctly discusses many of the facts that the previous Loonwatch article on Modi also highlighted.
20. Referring to his role in the Gujarat riots, Narendra Modi recently declared “If I am guilty, hang me in the street”. Ironically, this was indeed what eventually happened to one of Modi and the RSS’s ideological predecessors, the Italian fascist dictator Mussolini. Furthermore, Modi also recently declared in a speech that “A government that cannot protect its own people should not stay in power even for a minute”; considering what happened in Gujarat in 2002 under Modi’s own state government, readers will note the hypocrisy.
At the end of the Guardian article mentioned in #19, Dr Priyamvada Gopal proposed that Western governments should terminate relations with a Modi national government if he wins the election in India. There are of course arguments both for and against the feasibility and practicality of such measures; it is also possible that realpolitik will force Modi to moderate his stance one he is Prime Minister (due to foreign trade/diplomatic ties, or if the BJP has to form a coalition with other Indian parties). Nevertheless, Western governments, intelligence agencies and business leaders should certainly be apprised of the true ideology of a Modi regime. For the international public record, these facts will therefore be reiterated and expanded below.
”HINDUTVA”/“HINDU NATIONALISM”, NAZISM, NARENDRA MODI AND THE RSS
Hindu fundamentalism, also called Hindutva, is driven by a trio of organisations in India called the Sangh Parivar – the family. The RSS is an ultra-conservative group that demands unflinching patriotism and preservation of Hindu culture; the VHP is their religious arm; the BJP is the political arm and India’s main opposition party. There are smaller offshoots too including a violent paramilitary wing called the Bajrang Dal and the hardline Shiv Sena party in Mumbai whose founder adored Hitler.
“Hindu nationalism is built on the idea that India is a Hindu majoritarian nation, with Muslims and Christians cast as the minority, ‘other’,” Rahul Verma, a journalist and researcher on the subject, says. He says Hindu nationalism in recent years has fed off the Islamophobic, post-9/11 “Muslim terrorist” narrative.
Chetan Bhatt, the director at the Centre for the Study of Human Rights at the London School of Economics, has also spent years studying this movement. “Narendra Modi has been an activist for the Hindu far-right paramilitary RSS and its affiliates for the entirety of his political life. He remains committed to the supremacist ideology of Hindutva which says that India should be an exclusive Hindu nation state in which minorities are treated as second-class citizens or worse.”
1. V.D. SAVARKAR AND “HINDUTVA”
Savarkar (1883-1966) coined the term “Hinduvta”, ie. Hindu Nationalism. Narendra Modi openly describes himself as a “Hindu Nationalist”. Savakar wrote numerous propaganda texts promoting this ideology and has been one of its most influential figures. Savarkar was an atheist, which possibly explains why Hindutva is stripped of Hinduism’s admirable pluralistic religious ideals and ethical principles.
Savarkar was also one of the leaders of the Hindu Mahasabha, a Far-Right Indian political party that multiple senior RSS founders were also heavily involved with. The party’s core ideology is essentially the same as that of the RSS.
The Hindu Mahasabha did not actively support agitations against British rule in India. Under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi, the mainstream Indian independence movement led several nationwide campaigns of non-violent civil disobedience; the Hindu Mahasabha refused to endorse any of these campaigns and participated in the legislative councils established by the British, which were otherwise boycotted by Gandhi’s movement and most of the Indian population.
Many readers will be aware of the following fact: In 1948, a year after India’s independence, a former member of the RSS murdered Gandhi, primarily due to the latter’s desire for Hindu-Muslim unity and his opposition to anti-Muslim bigotry. (Gandhi was also staunchly opposed to Nazism and fascism). Furthermore, during the 1960s, a formal judicial investigation in India (known as the Kapur Commission) concluded that Savarkar had been part of the conspiracy to kill Gandhi; the assassins had even personally visited Savarkar shortly beforehand, who blessed them “Be successful and return”. All of the assassins were prominent members of the Hindu Mahasabha.
Savarkar is on record as repeatedly endorsing Hitler, the Nazis, and their treatment of religious minorities. Examples of Savarkar’s statements are listed below.
(a) Praises Hitler, Nazism and Fascism:
[‘Speech on India’s Foreign Policy’, Poona, 3.11.1938, quoted in “Veer Savarkar’s Whirlwind Propaganda”, A.S. Bhinde, Bombay, 1941, page 51-52] “Hitler knows better than Pandit [Jawaharlal] Nehru does what suits Germany best. The very fact that Germany or Italy has so wonderfully recovered and grown as powerful as never before at the touch of the Nazi or Fascist magical wand is enough to prove that those political ‘isms’ were the most congenial tonics their health demanded…Pandit Nehru went out of his way when he took sides in the name of all Indians against Germany and Italy. Pandit Nehru might claim to express the Congress section in India at the most. But it should be made clear to the German, Italian or Japanese public that [tens of millions] of Hindu Sanghatanists in India who neither Pandit Nehru nor Congress represents cherish no ill-will towards Germany or Italy or Japan or any other country in the world simply because they had chosen a form of Government or constitutional policy why they thought suited best and contributed most to their national solidarity and strength.”
[Savarkar, speech in 1940]: “There is no reason to suppose that Hitler must be a human monster because he passes off as a Nazi…..Nazism proved undeniably the savior of Germany under the set of circumstances Germany was placed in.”
(b) Praises expansionist Nazi Germany and multiple aspects of Nazi ideology:
After Nazi Germany’s invasion of Czechoslovakia in March 1939, Savarkar’s Hindu Mahasabha (1) explicitly adopted a pro-Nazi stance and (2) explicitly drew parallels between Hindutva and Nazism’s “Aryan” cult.
[‘Speech on India’s Foreign Policy’, Poona, 1938, quoted in “Veer Savarkar’s Whirlwind Propaganda”, A.S. Bhinde, Bombay, 1941, page 53] ”Germany was perfectly justified in uniting the Austrian and Sudeten Germans under the German flag…The fact is that when Germany was weak, they [the British] partitioned [her] piecemeal. Now that Germany is strong, why should she not strike to unite all Germans and consolidate them into a pan-German State and realise the political dream which millions of German people have cherished.”
[Via M. Casolari, Hindutva’s foreign tie-up in the 1930s: archival evidence] In 1939, Savarkar’s Hindu Mahasabha celebrated Germany’s ‘solemn revival of Aryan culture, the glorification of the Swastika, her patronage of Vedic learning, and the ardent championship of the tradition of Indo-Germanic civilisation’.
[Direct quote from the Hindu Mahasabha spokesman’s speech in 1939] “Germany’s solemn idea of the revival of the Aryan culture, the glorification of the Swastika, her patronage of Vedic learning and the ardent championship of the tradition of Indo-Germanic civilization are welcomed by the religious and sensible Hindus of India with a jubilant hope. Only a few Socialists headed by Pundit J. Nehru have created a bubble of resentment against the present government of Germany, but their activities are far from having any significance in India. The vain imprecations of Mahatma Gandhi against Germany’s indispensable vigour in matters of internal policy obtain but little regard in so far as they are uttered by a man who has always betrayed and confused the country with affected mysticism. Germany’s crusade against the enemies of Aryan culture will bring all the Aryan nations of the world to their senses and awaken the Indian Hindus for the restoration of their lost glory.”
[Via C. Jaffrelot, “The Hindu Nationalist Movement in Indian Politics”, Hurst, London, 1996, pages 51-52] The Nazi newspaper “Vokischer Beobachter” reported on Savarkar’s speeches in exchange for the promotion of Germany’s anti-semitic policies in India.
[Via M. Casolari, ‘Hindutva’s foreign tie-up in the 1930s: archival evidence’] This resulted in Savarkar receiving a copy of [Hitler’s autobiography] Mein Kampf from Germany.
(c) Duplicates Nazi concept of a “Fatherland”:
[From Savarkar’s propaganda book Hindutva or Who is a Hindu] “The Aryans who settled in India at the dawn of history already formed a nation, now embodied in the Hindus…..Hindus are bound together not only by the love they bear to a common Fatherland and by the common blood that courses through their veins and keeps our hearts throbbing and our affection warm but also by the of the common homage we pay to our great civilization, our Hindu culture.”
(d) Explicitly compares Indian Hindus and Muslims to Germans and Jews:
[Savarkar speaking at the 20th session of the Hindu Mahasabha, held in Nagpur in 1938] “If you call it an Indian Nation it is merely an English synonym for the Hindu Nation. To us Hindus, Hindustan and India mean one and the same thing. We are Indians because we are Hindus and vice versa…It is absurd to call us a community in India. The Germans are the nation in Germany and the Jews a community…..Even so the Hindus are the nation in India – in Hindustan, and the Muslim minority a community”
[Savarkar speaking at the 21st session of the Hindu Mahasabha, held in Calcutta in 1939] “Today we Hindus from Kashmir to Madras and Sindh to Assam will be a nation by ourselves – while the Indian Muslims are on the whole more inclined to identify themselves and their interests with Muslims outside India than Hindus who live next door, like Jews in Germany.”
(e) Explicitly states that Indian Muslims should be treated the way Nazis treated German Jews:
[Via V.D. Savarkar, “Hindu Rashtra Darshan”, G. Khare, Bombay, 1949, page 65] “If they [Indian Muslims] grow stronger they can play the part of Sudeten Germans alright. But if we Hindus in India grow stronger in time these Muslim friends of the League type will have to play the part of German-Jews instead. We Hindus have taught the Shakas and the Huns already to play that part pretty well. So it is no use bandying words till the test comes. The taste of the pudding is in its eating.”
(f) Explicitly advocates the “Two Nation Theory”, reiterates parallels with Germany and Jews:
[Savarkar presiding over the 19th Hindu Mahasabha in 1937] “I warn the Hindus that the Mohammedans are likely to prove dangerous to our Hindu Nation… India cannot be assumed today to be a Unitarian and homogenous nation, but on the contrary there are two nations in the main: the Hindus and the Muslims in India.”
[Savarkar, 15 August 1943, confirmed by the “Indian Annual Register” 1943 vol.2 page 10] “I have no quarrel with Mr Jinnah’s two-nation theory. We, Hindus, are a nation by ourselves and it is a historical fact that Hindus and Muslims are two nations.”
[Savarkar presiding over the 20th Hindu Mahasabha in 1938] “The original political sin, which our Hindu Congressites…committed at the beginning of the Indian National Congress movement and are persistently committing still of running after the mirage of a territorial Indian Nation and of seeking to kill as an impediment in that fruitless pursuit the lifegrowth of an organic Hindu Nation.….We Hindus are a Nation by ourselves because religious, racial, cultural and historical affinities bind us intimately into a homogenous nation.”
[Savarkar, October 1938] “A nation is formed by a majority living therein. What did the Jews do in Germany? They being in minority were driven out from Germany.”
[Savarkar, July 1939] “Nationality did not depend so much on a common geographical area as on unity of thought, religion, language and culture. For this reason the Germans and the Jews could not be regarded as a nation.”
(g) Denigrates historical Hindu warrior codes of chivalry towards women and explicitly states that Hindu men should rape Muslim women:
[From Savarkar’s propaganda book The Six Glorious Epochs of Indian History, specifically the chapter “Hindu Chivalry Towards Enemy Women”] “The Muslim women never feared retribution or punishment at the hands of any Hindu for their heinous crime. They [Hindus] had a perverted idea of woman-chivalry…..Muslim women were sure that even in the thick of battles and in the confusion wrought just after then neither the victor Hindu Chiefs, nor any of their common soldiers, nor would any civilian ever touch their hair. For ‘albeit enemies and atrocious, they were women’ ! Hence, even when they were taken prisoner in battles the Muslim women — royal ladies as also the commonest slaves — were invariably sent back safe and sound to their respective families ! Such incidents were common enough in those times. And this act was glorified by the Hindus as their chivalry towards the enemy women and the generosity of their religion !
…..The souls of…..millions of aggrieved [Hindu] women might have perhaps said, ‘Do not forget, O, Your Majesty, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj [the 17th Century Maratha leader]…the unutterable atrocities and oppression and outrage and committed on us by the Sultans and Muslim noblemen and thousands of others, big and small. Let those Sultans and their peers take a fright that in the event of a Hindu victory our molestation and detestable lot shall be avenged on the Muslim women. Once they are haunted with this dreadful apprehension that Muslim women, too, stand in the same predicament in case the Hindus win, the future Muslim conquerors will never dare think of such molestation of Hindu women…..It was the suicidal Hindu idea of chivalry to women which saved the Muslim women…..Their womanhood became their shield…..But because of the then prevalent perverted religious ideas about chivalry to women, which ultimately proved highly detrimental to the Hindu community, neither Shivaji Maharaj nor Chimaji Appa could do such wrongs to the Muslim women.
(h) Continues denigrating historical Hindu chivalry towards Muslim women, explicitly states that Muslim women should be forcibly converted to Hinduism:
[From Savarkar’s propaganda book “The Six Glorious Epochs of Indian History”, specifically the chapter “Hindu Chivalry Towards Enemy Women”] “Still worse was the ridiculous idea, which the Hindus of those times entertained, that it was a sin to convert a Muslim woman to Hinduism…..Naturally, even in the midst of a Hindu community and the Hindu state they were secure against any attempt by the Hindus at abducting them or their forcible conversion to Hinduism. Exceptions however were very rare.
Under these circumstances, the Muslim feminine class was left seraphically free from any chastisement or penalty for their share of the crimes perpetrated against the Hindu woman-world…..”
(i) Denigrates Buddhism’s principle of universal brotherhood:
[From Savarkar’s propaganda book Essentials of Hindutva, specifically the chapter “Buddhism – a universal religion”] “Buddhism had made the first and yet the greatest attempt to propagate a universal religion…..As long as the whole world was red in tooth and claw and the national and racial distinction so strong as to make men brutal, so long if India had to live at all a life whether spiritual or political according to the right of her soul, she must not lose the strength born of national and racial cohesion. So the [Hindu] leaders of thought and action grew sick of repeating the [Buddhist] mumbos and jumbos of universal brotherhood…..”
In the previous chapter, Savarkar had already disparagingly referred to what he called “the mealy-mouthed formulas of Ahimsa [non-violence] and universal brotherhood”.
(j) Promotes collaboration with British colonial authorities, refuses to support mainstream Indian independence movement:
Savarkar was originally involved in activities opposing the British colonial rule of India; he primarily advocated violent revolution and assassinations. After a member of Savarkar’s revolutionary group killed a British official, British authorities arrested and jailed Savarkar, sentencing him to life imprisonment in the Andaman Islands. It was during his incarceration that Savarkar wrote his “Hindutva” treatise (in the early 1920s), which unequivocally depicted Muslims as the primary enemy.
Within a year of his imprisonment, Savarkar also repeatedly contacted British authorities, appealing for clemency; for example, in a sycophantic letter dated November 1913, Savarkar wrote the following:
[Savarkar] “If the government in their manifold beneficence and mercy release me, I for one cannot be but the staunchest advocate of constitutional progress and loyalty to the English government which is the foremost condition of that progress…..Moreover, my conversion to the constitutional line would bring back all those misled young men in India and abroad who were once looking up to me as their guide…..The Mighty alone can afford to be merciful and therefore where else can the prodigal son return but to the parental doors of the government?”
From his incarceration onwards, the primary targets of Savarkar’s hostility were Indian Muslims, not the British colonial authorities who had actually imprisoned him and who were continuing to rule India. After Savarkar’s early release in 1924, he never participated again in any aspect of the Indian independence movement.
In fact, in October 1939, as a leader of the Hindu Mahasabha, Savarkar personally met the British Viceroy Lord Linlithgow and explicitly offered to collaborate with the British colonial authorities. Linlithgow spoke positively about the matter:
[Linlithgow] “The situation, [Savarkar] said, was that His Majesty’s Government must now turn to the Hindus and work with their support…..Our interests were now the same and we must work together. Even though now the most moderate of men, he had himself been in the past the adherent of a revolutionary party … But now that our interests were so closely bound together the essential thing was for Hinduism and Great Britain to be friends, and the old antagonism was no longer necessary. The Hindu Mahasabha, he went on to say, favoured an unambiguous undertaking of Dominion Status at the end of the war [as opposed to India’s full independence]”
The mainstream “Quit India” movement was launched in 1942; its leaders included Gandhi, Nehru and Sardar Patel. At the time, when Gandhi asked Indians to resign from government jobs with the British colonial authorities as part of the independence movement’s campaign of non-violent non-cooperation, Savarkar ordered his followers to continue collaborating with the British:
[Savarkar] “I issue this definite instruction to all Hindu Sanghatanists in general holding any post or position of vantage in the government services, should stick to them and continue to perform their regular duties.”
To quote this article in Frontline (part of The Hindu media group): To summarise, Savarkar started out as a revolutionary, abjectly renounced his principles in the Andamans, refused to join his fellow prisoners in their struggle there, stayed away from all anti-British activities after his release from prison, and, with his virulent anti-Muslim campaign, ended up helping the British in their policy of “divide and rule”.
And, of course, Savarkar was also one of the ringleaders of the cabal that murdered Mahatma Gandhi.
(k) Savarkar and betrayal:
In a speech directed at India’s royalty, Savarkar made the following statement:
[Via “Savarkar Commemoration Volume, page 82] “But anyone who might have actively betrayed the trust of the people, disowned his fathers, and debased his blood, by arraying himself against the Mother – he shall be crushed to dust and ashes, and shall be looked upon as a helot, a bastard, and a renegade.”
Considering the information comprehensively documented above, readers can draw their own conclusions about the extent to which Savarkar’s diatribe inadvertently applies to himself.
(l) Narendra Modi repeatedly praises Savarkar:
As of 29 May 2013, Narendra Modi’s official website has displayed an article praising Savarkar, which quotes Modi describing Savarkar as a “heroic man”, a “worshipper of weapons” and a “worshipper of sacred texts”. Along with some imaginative claims about Savarkar’s alleged contribution to India’s freedom struggle against British imperialism, the article highlights the fact that Modi “paid tributes” to Savarkar on the latter’s “130th birth anniversary on 28th May 2013” at the Gujarat Vibhan Sabha [Gujarat Legislative Assembly] at the state capital of Gandhinagar (Modi’s website has publicised photos here). The article also includes audio footage of a speech of Modi “going back almost two decades, where he talks about the phenomenon Veer Savarkar was”.
2. THE RASHTRIYA SWAYAMSEVAK SANGH (“RSS”)
Via the Delhi-based British historian William Dalrymple, writing in the New York Review of Books in 2005:
…..the RSS was founded in direct imitation of European fascist movements. Like its 1930s models, it still sponsors daily parades in khaki uniforms and requires militaristic salutes; in fact, the RSS salute differs from that of the Nazis only in the angle of the forearm, which is held horizontally over the chest. The RSS aims to create a corps of dedicated paramilitary zealots who will bring about a revival of what it sees as the lost Hindu golden age of national strength and purity. The BJP, the Hindu nationalist party which ruled India from 1999 until last May, was founded as the political wing of the RSS, and most senior BJP figures hold posts in both organizations. The BJP is certainly much more moderate than the RSS—like the Likud in Israel, the BJP is a party which embraces a wide spectrum of right-wing opinion, ranging from mildly conservative free marketeers to raving ultra-nationalists. But both organizations believe, as the centerpiece of their ideology, that India is in essence a Hindu nation and that the minorities may live in India only if they acknowledge this.
The RSS publicly claims to have approximately 5-6 million members. However, The Guardian recently reported that the RSS actually has 40 million members in India. The organisation has at least 50,000 branches across the country, with meetings held daily. The RSS also has approximately 100 affiliate organisations. Furthermore, Bloomberg recently confirmed that the RSS is running a network of 18,000 schools across India.
Although the RSS’s core ideology was initially influenced by Italian Fascism, it was subsequently heavily influenced by Hitler and Third Reich-era Nazism. Readers will be aware that there is a specific term describing such organisations & individuals.
The RSS as an organisation had precisely zero involvement in India’s struggle for independence from British colonial rule. For all their jingoistic claims of “nationalism”, “patriotism” and “opposition to foreigners”, the RSS did absolutely nothing to free India during that period.
Furthermore, “nationalism”, particularly the RSS’s definition of the concept, is of course a foreign import from 19th and 20th Century Europe; the RSS’s Nazi-inspired salutes, uniforms, ideological aspects etc are also foreign imports to India. Readers will note the hypocrisy.
Only male Hindus are allowed to join the RSS. Ever since its founding in 1925, the RSS has repeatedly carried out acts of violence against Muslims throughout India, including involvement in the rapes and massacres during the Gujarat 2002 riots. As discussed earlier, the RSS has also (1) been involved in the mass-murder, rape and forced conversions of Christians, and (2) been exposed by one of its own leaders as being responsible for multiple terrorist attacks deliberately targeting innocent Muslims across India. In 2004, the RSS was designated a terrorist organisation by the Terrorism Research Center.
There are direct implications for Western countries too. As confirmed by the Financial Times, the UK’s Channel 4 News, Outlook India, the human rights group Awaaz, and most recently by The Independent, the RSS has been using front organisations here in the West to promote its propaganda in the United States and the United Kingdom. These front organisations have also been diverting millions of dollars of donations from ordinary Hindus intended for charitable humanitarian causes (including major crises involving Muslim and Christian victims in India) and using the money to finance the RSS’s extremist activities in India instead.
Details on the RSS’s key founders, leaders, and core ideology are listed below.
B.S Moonje, RSS co-founder and mentor of the RSS’s first leader:
(a) Claims India should have a dictator like Hitler, promotes need to systematically promote this propaganda:
[Via M. Casolari, Hindutva’s foreign tie-up in the 1930s: archival evidence] “…..unless we have our own swaraj [self-rule] with a Hindu as a dictator like Shivaji of old or Mussolini or Hitler of present day Italy and Germany…But this does not mean that we have to sit with folded hands until some such dictator arises in India. We should formulate a scientific scheme and carry on propaganda for it.”
(b) Personally visits Mussolini and multiple fascist institutions in Italy in 1931, claims Hindus need a similar fascist movement throughout India in the form of the RSS:
[Via M. Casolari, ‘Hindutva’s foreign tie-up in the 1930s: archival evidence’] “The Balilla institutions [which organised military training and the fascist ideological indoctrination of young Italian boys] and the conception of the whole organization have appealed to me the most…The whole organization is conceived by Mussolini for the military regeneration of Italy. Italians, by nature appear ease-loving and non-martial, like the Indians generally. They have cultivated, like Indians, the work of peace and neglected the cultivation of the art of war. Mussolini saw the essential weakness of his country and conceived the idea of the Balilla organization…The idea of fascism vividly brings out the conception of unity amongst people…India and particularly Hindu India need some such institution for the military regeneration of the Hindus…Our institution, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh [RSS] of Nagpur, under [the RSS’s first leader and former Hindu Mahasabha member] Dr Hedgewar is of this kind, though quite independently conceived. I shall spend the rest of my life developing and extending this institution of Dr Hedgewar all throughout Maharashtra and other provinces.”
…..The Italy visit inspired Moonje to promote these ideas among Hindus in Maharashtra and begin the organization of Hindu youth movements based on this fascist model. This included a conference on Fascism and Mussolini’s political thought in 1934, presided by RSS founder K.B. Hedgewar and at which Moonje spoke.
[Moonje quoted in an interview with “The Mahratta”, 12 April 1931] “Leaders should imitate the youth movement of Germany and the Balilla and Fascist organizations of Italy. I think they are eminently suited for introduction in India, adapting them to suit the special conditions. I have been very much impressed by these movements and I have seen their activities with my own eyes in all details.”
(c) Promotes violence, fascism and perpetual war:
[Moone’s “Preface to the Scheme of the Central Hindu Military Society and its Military School”] “This training is meant for qualifying and fitting our boys for the game of killing masses of men with the ambition of winning victory with the best possible causalities (sic) of dead and wounded while causing the utmost possible to the adversary.”
[Quotes from Mussolini’s “Doctrine of Fascism” in Moone’s “Preface to the Scheme of the Central Hindu Military Society and its Military School”] “I absolutely disbelieve in perpetual peace which is detrimental and negative to the fundamental virtues of man, which only by struggle reveal themselves in the light of the sun. … War alone brings up to its highest tension all human energy and puts the stamp of nobility upon the peoples who have the courage to meet it. … Fascism believes neither in the possibility nor the utility of perpetual peace. It thus repudiates the doctrine of pacifism, which is born of renunciation of the struggle and an act of cowardice in the face of sacrifice.”
M.S. Golwalkar, the RSS’s second leader and its major ideological influence:
The core ideology of the RSS is heavily based on the writings of Golwalkar (1906-1973), specifically his book We or Our Nationhood Defined and the follow-up Bunch of Thoughts. The full text of both books is currently available online in English here and here. Golwalkar wrote the first book in 1938, when RSS founder K.B. Hedgewar appointed him RSS General Secretary. Golwalkar’s second book was published in 1966. Golwalkar never retracted any of these statements, not even after the horrors of the Holocaust.
(i) Extracts from We or Our Nationhood Defined:
(a) Promotes explicitly racial Far-Right propaganda. Claims a “Nation” is based on 5 indivisible factors: Race, Religion, Culture, Language and Geography; claims Race and Religion are the dominant factors for the RSS:
”the idea contained in the word Nation is a compound of five distinct factors fused into one indissoluble whole the famous five “Unities” – Geographical (country), Racial (Race), Religious (Religion), cultural (Culture) and linguistic (language).”
”It is superfluous to emphasis the importance of Racial Unity in the Nation idea. A Race is a hereditary Society having common customs, common language, common memories of glory or disaster; in short, it is a population with a common origin under one culture. Such a race is by far the important ingredient of a Nation. Even if there be people of a foreign origin, they must have become assimilated into the body of the mother race and inextricably fused into it. They should have become one with the original national race, not only in its economic and political life, but also in its religion, culture and language, for otherwise such foreign races may be considered, under certain circumstances, at best members of a common state for political purposes; but they can never form part and parcel of the National body. If the mother race is destroyed either by destruction of the persons composing it or by loss of the principle of its existence, its religion and culture, the nation itself comes to an end. We will not seek to prove this axiomatic truth, that the Race is the body of the Nation, and that with its fall, the Nation ceases to exist.”
“Where religion does not form a distinguishing factor, culture together with the other necessary constituents of the Nation idea become the important point in the making up of individual Nationality. On the other hand in Hindusthan [India], religion is an all-absorbing entity. Based as it is on the unshakable foundations of a sound philosophy of life (as indeed Religion ought to be), it has become eternally woven into the life of the Race, and forms, as it were, its very Soul. With us, every action in life, individual, social or political, is a command of Religion. We make war or peace, engage in arts and crafts, amass wealth and give it away, indeed we are born and we die-all in accord with religious injunctions. Naturally, therefore, we are what our great Religion has made us. Our Race-spirit is a child of our Religion and so with us. Culture is but a product of our all-comprehensive Religion, a part of its body and not distinguishable from it.”
“Ever since that evil day, when Moslems first landed in Hindusthan, right up to the present moment, the Hindu Nation has been gallantly fighting on to shake off the despoilers. . . . The Race Spirit has been awakening.”
(b) Contempt for educated Hindus:
“This ‘educated’ class of Hindus became in truth slaves of the English, as the late Dr S.V Ketkar has aptly described them. They had cut their traces, lost their footing in the National past, and become deculturized, denationalized people. But they also formed the bulk of the ‘Congress’ and found no difficulty in eagerly gulping down the extra-ordinary absurdity, that their country was not theirs, but belonged to strangers and enemies of their Race equally with them.”
(c) Opposition to inclusive, pluralistic democracy and territory-based nationality:
“The idea was spread that for the first time the people were going to live a National life, the Nation in the land naturally was composed of all those who happened to reside therein and that all these people were to unite on a common ‘National’ platform and win back ‘freedom’ by ‘Constitutional means’. Wrong notions of democracy strengthened the view and we began to class ourselves with our old invaders and foes under the outlandish name – Indian – and tried to win them over to join hands with us in our struggle. The result of this poison is too well known. We have allowed ourselves to be duped into believing our foes to be our friends and with our hands are undermining true Nationality.”
(d) Claims non-Hindus in India “deserve no privileges, not even citizen’s rights”:
“There are only two courses open to the foreign elements [non-Hindus], either to merge themselves in the national race and adopt its culture, or to live at its mercy so long as the national race may allow them to do so and to quit the country at the sweet will of the national race. That is the only sound view on the minorities problem. That is the only logical and correct solution.”
“All those not belonging to the national, i.e. Hindu race, Religion, Culture and Language, naturally fall out of the pale of real ‘National’ life. We repeat: in Hindusthan, the land of the Hindus, lives and should live the Hindu Nation – satisfying all the five essential requirements of the scientific nation concept of the modern world. Consequently only those movements are truly ‘National’ as aim at re-building, revitalizing and emancipating from its present stupor, the Hindu Nation. Those only are nationalist patriots, who, with the aspiration to glorify the Hindu race and Nation next to their heart, are prompted into activity and strive to achieve that goal. All others are either traitors and enemies to the National cause, or, to take a charitable view, idiots.
The foreign races in Hindusthan must either adopt the Hindu culture and language, must learn to respect and hold in reverence Hindu religion, must entertain no idea but those of the glorification of the Hindu race and culture, i.e., of the Hindu nation and must loose their separate existence to merge in the Hindu race, or may stay in the country, wholly subordinated to the Hindu Nation, claiming nothing, deserving no privileges, far less any preferential treatment — not even citizen’s rights. There is, at least, should be, no other course for them to adopt. We are an old nation; let us deal, as old nations ought to and do deal, with the foreign races, who have chosen to live in our country.”
(e) Glorifies Nazi Germany and the persecution of Germany’s Jews, states that India should duplicate Hitler’s treatment of minority populations:
“To keep up the purity of the Race and its culture, Germany shocked the world by her purging the country of the Semitic Races — the Jews. Race pride at its highest has been manifested here. Germany has also shown how well nigh impossible it is for Races and cultures, having differences going to the root, to be assimilated into one united whole, a good lesson for us in Hindusthan to learn and profit by.”
“To be brief, all the five constituents of the Nation Idea have been boldly vindicated in modern Germany and that too, today in the actual present, when we can for ourselves see and study them, as they manifest themselves in their relative importance.”
(ii) Extracts from Bunch of Thoughts:
(a) Misrepresents and slanders Judaism, Christianity and Islam:
“In all those Semitic religions-Judaism, Christianity and Islam-a single way of worship is prescribed for all. Those creeds have but one prophet, one scripture and one God, other than whom there is no path of salvation for the human soul. It requires no great intelligence to see the absurdity of such a proposition.”
(b) Claims Hindus are differentiated from other religious groups before birth:
“Some wise men of today tell us that no man is born as Hindu or Muslim or Christian but as a simple human being. This may be true about others. But for a Hindu, he gets the first “samskar” when he is still in the mother’s womb, and the last when his body is consigned to the flames. There are sixteen “samaskars” for the Hindu which make him what he is. In fact, we are Hindus even before we emerge from the womb of our mother. We are therefore born as Hindus. About the others, they are born to this world as simple unnamed human beings and later on, either circumcised or baptized, they become Muslims or Christians.”
(c) Claims RSS aims to reconvert Indian Muslims and Christians:
“Everybody knows that only a handful of Muslims came here as enemies and invaders. So, also, only a few foreign Christian missionaries came here. Now the Muslims and Christians have enormously grown in number…..it is our duty to call these our forlorn brothers, suffering under religious slavery for centuries, back to their ancestral home…..come back and identity themselves with their ancestral Hindu way of life in dress, customs, performing marriage ceremonies and funeral rites and such other things.”
“There are some people who claim that they have achieved unity of Hindus, Muslims, Christians and all others on the political and economic plane. But why limit the oneness only there? Why not make it more wide and more comprehensive so as to fuse them all in the Hindu way of life, in our dharma and take them back as lost brothers? To those who speak of unity on the political and economic plane, we say that we stand not only for political and economic unity but also for cultural and religious unity.”
(d) Rejects Indian nationality of all Indian non-Hindus:
“They forgot that here was already a full-fledged ancient nation of the Hindus and the various communities which were living in the country were here either as guests, the Jews and Parsis, or as invaders, the Muslims and Christians. They never faced the question how all such heterogeneous groups could be called as children of the soil merely because, by an accident, they happened to reside in a common territory under the rule of a common enemy.”
(e) Reiterates opposition to territory-based nationality and Gandhi’s principle of Hindu-Muslim unity:
“Most of the tragedies and evils that have overtaken our country during the last few decades and are even today corroding our national life are its direct outcome…..In their phantom chase of achieving new unity and new nationality, our [Congress] leaders raised the slogan of ‘Hindu-Muslim unity’…..The first thing they preached was that our nationality could not be called Hindu, that even our land could not be called by its traditional name Hindusthan, as that would have offended the Muslim. The name ‘India’ given by the British was accepted. Taking that name, the ‘new nation’ was called the ‘Indian Nation’. And the Hindu was asked to rename himself as ‘Indian’.
But here, we had leaders who were, as if, pledged to sap all manliness from their own people. However, this is not a mere accident of history. This leadership only came as a bitter climax of the despicable tribe of so many of our ancestors who during the past twelve hundred years sold their national honour and freedom to foreigners, and joined hands with the inveterate enemies of our country [read: “Muslims”] and our religion in cutting the throats of their own kith and kin to gratify their personal egoism, selfishness and rivalry. No wonder nemesis overtook such a people in the form of such a self-destructive leadership.”
(f) Further examples of bigotry towards Muslims:
“They had come here as invaders. They were conceiving themselves as conquerors and rulers here for the last twelve hundred years. That complex was still in their mind. History has recorded that their antagonism was not merely political. Had it been so, they could have been won over in a very short time. But it was so deep-rooted that whatever we believed in, the Muslim was wholly hostile to it. If we worship in the temple, he would desecrate it. If we carry on bhajans and car festivals, that would irritate him. If we worship cow, he would like to eat it. If we glorify woman as a symbol of sacred motherhood, he would like to molest her. He was tooth and nail opposed to our way of life in all aspects – religious, cultural, social, etc. He had imbibed that hostility to the very core.”
(g) Further examples of bigotry towards Christians:
“So far as the Christians are concerned, to a superficial observer they appear not only quite harmless but as the very embodiment of compassion and love for humanity! Their speeches abound in words like ‘service’ and ‘human salvation’ as though they are specially deputed by the Almighty to uplift humanity! They run schools and colleges, hospitals and orphanages. The people of our country, simple and innocent as they are, are taken in by all these things. But what is the real and ulterior motive of Christians in pouring [tens of millions] of rupees in all these activities?
…..the missionary who spoke next bluntly said, “If we had been prompted to do all this by mere humanitarian considerations, why should we have come all the way here? Why should we have spent so much money? We are here for only one reason and that is to increase number of followers of our Lord Jesus Christ.” They are very clear about it.
Towards that end they feel that any tactics, however foul, is fair. The various surreptitious and mean tactics they employ for conversion are all too well known.
….. What does all this mean? It means that all the people in this country should be converted to Christianity. That is, their hereditary religion, philosophy, culture and way of life should be demolished and they should become absorbed in a world federation of Christianity.
….. Even St. Paul, the great disciple of Christ, has said, as quoted by Lokamanya Tilak in his Gita Rahasya, “How can it be a sin if by uttering falsehood I add to Your (God’s) Glory?”
….. Such is the role of Christian gentlemen residing in our land today, out to demolish not only the religious and social fabric of our life but also to establish political domination in various pockets and if possible all over the land. Such has been, in fact, their role wherever they have stepped-all under the alluring grab of bringing peace and brotherhood to mankind under the angelic wings of Jesus Christ. Jesus had called upon his followers to give their all to the poor, the ignorant and the downtrodden. But what have his followers done in practice? Wherever they have gone, they have proved to be not ‘blood-givers’ but ‘bloodsuckers’?
….. So long as the Christians here indulge in such activities and consider themselves as agents of the international movement for the spread of Christianity, and refuse to offer their first loyalty to the land of their birth and behave as true children of the heritage and culture of their ancestors, they will remain here as hostiles.”
(iii) RSS agenda is to “hold an empire without becoming emperor”:
Extract from The RSS and the BJP: A Division of Labour, by A.G. Noorani (further information here):
Golwalkar had bared the RSS’s ambitions and technique as far back as 1949: “If the Congress completely disintegrates and anarchy rules the country and there is nobody to take over…..we may sacrifice part of our normal cultural activities and accept the responsibility.” Asked point blank “Is it a fact that the Sangh plans to capture power?”, he replied: “We have kept before ourselves the ideal of Bhagwan Shri Krishna who held a big empire under his thumb but refused to become an emperor himself”. Or, as Rajendra Singh [4th RSS leader] and Bhaurao Deoras [RSS activist and brother of the 3rd RSS leader] said in Para 38 of their Application, ‘The RSS desires to dominate the world by cultural conquest by a great process of true national regeneration’. The ideal can be fully realized if the BJP, kept under the RSS thumb, captures power as the ‘national alternative.’
Interestingly, the British had, after careful deliberation, made sound assessment of the RSS. A circular sent by the Home Department of the Government of India to the Bihar government (No. F 201/44 Ests. Dated March 16, 1944) said: “After a protracted consideration of the question in which the Governments of the C.E. and Berar and Bombay were also consulted, as the organization was strongest there, it was decided that the RSS was a politico-commercial organization which concentrated on the formation of a militant body on fascist lines….”
The word fascist was aptly chosen. As Donald E. Smith says in his classic “India as a Secular State” (1963): “The leader principle, the stress on militarism, the doctrine of racial-cultural superiority, ultra-nationalism infused with religious idealism, the use of symbols of past greatness, the emphasis on national solidarity, the exclusion of religious or ethnic minorities from the nation-concept — all of these features of the RSS are highly reminiscent of fascist movements in Europe.”
A.G. Noorani also writes:
So brutally candid is “We or Our Nationhood Defined” that a desperate attempt was made by the RSS to distance itself from it – the RSS claimed that the book was merely an English translation of the Marathi work “Rashtra Meemansa” by Babarao G.D. Savarkar, brother of V. D. Savarkar. However, in his Preface to “We or Our Nationhood Defined” dated March 22, 1939, Golwalkar described “Rashtra Meemansa” as ‘one of my chief sources of inspiration and help. An English translation of this is due to be shortly out [sic].
Rajendra Singh and Bhaurao Deoras made an authoritative statement on that book in Para 10 of their 1978 application: ‘With a view to give a scientific base to propagate the idea India being (sic) historically from time immemorial a Hindu Nation, late Shri M.S. Golwalkar had written a book entitled, “We or Our Nationhood Defined”,’ In Para 7 they ‘placed on record’ his book “Bunch of Thoughts” (1966) in order ‘to clarify and understand the true purpose, the exact nature, the ambit and scope of the RSS work… and its activities.’
The RSS appeal thus affirmed the continuing validity and relevance of Golwalkar’s writings, specifically of those two books.
3. HITLER’S VIEWS ON INDIANS
The RSS’s deliberate emulation of various aspects of Nazism is particularly ironic considering what the racist white supremacist Hitler actually thought of Indians, including the British colonial rule of India. The relevant Wikipedia page has an accurate and fully-referenced summary, which is quoted verbatim as follows:
Hitler’s views on India were disparaging. He considered the British colonial rule of the subcontinent as an exemplary one and intended the German rule in the occupied East to resemble it. Hitler thought little of the Indian independence movement, declaring the freedom fighters of being racially inferior “Asiatic jugglers”. As early as 1930 he spoke of the Indian freedom movement as the rebellion of the “lower Indian race against the superior English Nordic race”, and that the British were free to deal with any subversive Indian activists as they liked. In 1937 he told the British Foreign Secretary Lord Halifax that the British should “shoot Gandhi, and if this doesn’t suffice to reduce them to submission, shoot a dozen leading members of the Congress, and if that doesn’t suffice shoot 200, and so on, as you make it clear that you mean business.” During the same discussion Hitler reportedly told Halifax that one of his favorite films was The Lives of a Bengal Lancer, because it depicted a handful of “superior race” Britons holding sway over an entire continent.
(a) As discussed above, May 2014 will be the date when RSS member & “Hindutva”/“Hindu Nationalism” proponent Narendra Modi will probably become India’s next Prime Minister. May 2014 is also the 50th anniversary of the death of Jawaharlal Nehru, who was one of Mahatma Gandhi’s closest friends & allies, a senior leader of the mainstream Indian independence movement, and independent India’s first Prime Minister. Depending on one’s perspective, the timing is either an interesting coincidence or it tragically symbolises what is about to occur.
(b) The information in this article should not be exploited by anyone to denigrate India & Indians in general, Hindus en masse or the religion of Hinduism as a whole; both as a Sikh and as an individual, I have a zero-tolerance policy towards racial & religious bigotry, regardless of the source and regardless of the target.
(c) For interested readers and for future reference, contact details for the International Criminal Court at The Hague are available here. Details on atrocities which the ICC defines as crimes against humanity are available here. It is also worth noting that the United Nations Security Council has adopted multiple resolutions during the past decade in which it has reaffirmed its responsibility to protect people from genocide, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity; furthermore, one of these resolutions also states that rape and other forms of sexual violence can constitute crimes against humanity or “a constitutive act with respect to genocide”.
(f) Democratic Congressman Keith Ellison and Republican Congressman Joe Pitts have been leading American bipartisan efforts to oppose Narendra Modi. They have jointly introduced a bipartisan Congressional resolution urging the US Government to continue denying a visa to Modi on the grounds of religious freedom violations. They have also jointly introduced a bipartisan Congressional resolution on the protection of religious minorities in India, which includes calls for specific actions to be taken by the US State Department; the complete text of the resolution is available in PDF form online here.
(h) The Twitter address of Baroness Sayeeda Warsi, Senior Minister of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Minister for Faith and Communities, is @SayeedaWarsi.
(j) The Twitter address of Keith Vaz, Chairman of the British Government’s Home Affairs Select Committee, is @Keith_VazMP.