Zaheer Zaidi for BeyondHeadlines
Gone are the days when BJP was a party of several renowned faces. Times have changed now, courtesy Narendra Modi. Today, Modi is BJP and BJP is Modi. So much so that the rest of the big names are feeling alienated.
But Modi’s BJP is different from the previous BJP; it is no longer Bharatiya Janata Party. You may call it Bharatiya Jhaghra Party! Leaders like LK Advani, Dr. Murli Manohar Joshi, Jaswant Singh, Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jailey, Lalji Tandon, Kalraj Misra are carrying forward the legacy of Atal Behari Vajpayee.
On the other hand, Modi has prevailed upon RSS after grabbing the state of Gujarat through his money and muscle power for the third time. Dr. Mohan Bhagwat ignored the services of BJP stalwarts and instead adopted Modi – an arrogant, stubborn and vindictive person.
Traits of Modi’s arrogance and muscle-power are visible all over Gujarat. He sacked chairman of co-operative society supplying milk and other dairy products to Amul. He was not only suspended but put behind the bar. His sin was that he entertained Rahul Gandhi when the later called on him. Another example, Modi is distributing Burqa (veil) and Topi (skull-cap) to Muslims participating in his rally, but himself declined to wear the Topi when a Muslim offered. Interestingly, Dr. Joshi during his tenure as President of BJP accepted the Topi when my brother offered him. (See his photograph sporting Topi.) He sportingly wore the Topi and commented: “Apne to hamen Topi pahna di”.
Modi is blue-eyed boy of Rajnath Singh, who (Raj Nath) is aware that he may not become PM in presence of old guards like LK Advani, Dr. Murli Manohar Joshi, Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley. Rajnath Singh is aware that BJP cannot get absolute majority and will have to seek alliance with others to form government at centre. And no other political party would extend support to Modi. He is hoping against hope that if such a situation emerges, Singh himself would become the natural choice in absence of other senior leaders.
Rajnath launched Modi in haste. There is difference in state and Parliament elections. Modi took the election as 100 Meter Race. Ignoring the fact that it is “Marathon”: he is exhausted now. Insult to injury has been added by Kejriwal’s entry in Gujarat and his exposure of the ‘development’ canard that Modi had falsely propagated. Kejriwal has done un-assessable damage, entering the lion’s (Modi’s) den. Henceforth, the self-proclaimed Lion is running away.
Modi propagates Hindutva, not Sanatan Dharm or Hinduism. What does ‘Hindutva’ mean? It does not mean “Hinduism” as a religion – for Savarkar was, after all, an avowed atheist. Savarkar, who’s English was impeccable, he translated this strange word he had invented. In his book “Hindudom”, this was akin to the term ‘Christendom’ that the rule of Christians was interpreted in the West.
Sawarkar was explicit in deploring what he regarded as a thousand years of Muslim rule that preceded colonial rule and, therefore, sought liberation from both the Brits and the Muslims (at the time when the Muslims constituted less than a quarter of our pre-partition population). What Savarkar, therefore, postulated was the replacement of British rule by Hindu rule! The mainstream Freedom Movement stood, in sharp contrast, for the replacement of colonial rule by Indian rule, for a secular state not “Hindudom”.
Fascinated with this concept, evolved by Savarkar while he was under house imprisonment in Ratnagiri after he secured his release from the Andamans by pleading with the British to have compassion for his youth, Keshav Baliram Hedgewar, then toying with the idea of creating the RSS, rushed to meet him – and became, in effect, Savarkar’s first chela for this new philosophy.
In “We or Our Nationhood Defined” MS Golwalkar, the leading ideologue of the RSS, further refined the concept of Hindu India’s nationhood to exclude all those who were either not born in this land or who looked beyond its borders for spiritual inspiration. The target was explicitly identified as the Muslims who, it was stated, might continue to live here but only as “guests” and who would cease to have any rights if they transgressed any element of the quintessentially Hindu ethos of the country.
Golwalkar also expressed his great admiration for Hitler and his book ‘Mein Kampf’. After Hitler was defeated and the RSS came under scrutiny for its possible role in Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination, the RSS distanced themselves from this publication saying the book was not authorized by it. However Savarkar, in a statement from Nagpur, ironically datelined 15 August 1943, four years to the day before India was due for her tryst with destiny, said he completely agreed with Jinnah that there were in fact two nations inhabiting this land, a Hindu nation and a Muslim nation, and it was the Hindu nation that he wished to see privileged. Surprisingly, today Modi is advocating secularism at Purnia Bihar. Perhaps Modi does not know what secularism is; if this is secularism then Jinnah was perhaps more secular than Modi.
Seniors are feeling suffocated. They are feeling humiliated. Their services have been ignored by RSS. LK Advani and Dr. Joshi are preferable to Muslim in comparison of Modi. Modi has double standards; he shows sympathy with Pranab Mukherji for not getting Prime Minister’s chair whereas he himself has superseded Advani in the race of Prime Minister. He is raising objection over Congress for inducting tainted leaders, and at the same time taking back Yadurappa and others. He is issuing statements in favor of women on women’s day, and ignoring his own wife Yashoda Ben.
For Muslims, Atal Behari Vajpayee’s politics was acceptable. Neither are they averse to those who are carrying Vajpayee’s legacy forward. The real culprit is Modi who has no disregard for anybody, be it the Hindus in Gujarat, his seniors in the party and Muslims in general.