RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat’s claim that Hindus are at war to protect their religion and culture, and Muslims can live in the country by shedding their “sense of supremacy” drew a strong reaction from Opposition parties that accused him of issuing a call for violence and challenging the Constitution.
In an interview with the Organiser, regarded as an RSS mouthpiece, Bhagwat said the aggression shown by a section of Hindus could be understood because they were at war. Opposition parties felt his views were dangerous because he believed the war was now against the enemies within, hinting at liberal Hindus and communists.
Although the main Opposition Congress did not react to the interview, the CPM politburo said in a statement: “The RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat’s atrocious comments in an interview to RSS weeklies constitutes an open and blatant challenge to the Constitution of India, to equal rights of all citizens and to the rule of law.
He has threatened the Muslim minority community that they will have to give up ideas of ‘supremacy’ to remain safe.
“He justifies the aggression of ‘Hindu society’ in the name of perceived historical wrongs, stating that Hindus are ‘at war’. He has virtually given a call for violence against a section of Indian citizens on the basis of religious affiliation.”
The statement added: “In fact, it is not ‘Hindu society’ but Hindutva brigades inspired by the RSS ideology and backed by leaders like Bhagwat who have created a sense of siege in the minority community by their constant assaults on the constitutional and legal rights of minority communities at different levels. Bhagwat’s statements are an update of the hate-filled communal writings of RSS icons like Hedgewar and Golwalkar that Muslims can live in India only if they accept a subordinate position.”
RJD Rajya Sabha member Manoj Jha told The Telegraph: “I don’t believe the idea of aggression. This is again fiction. In the last few years, the RSS-BJP has made sure that a fictional fear, a fictional anger dominate everything. And if at all there is any aggression, that can be used for a constructive purpose. For instance, how can Hindu society be comfortable with this kind of inequality? How can the Hindu society be comfortable with the idea that their collective memory is being butchered in favour of a history that did not exist?”