Statements made in Dharam Sansad not Hindutva, says RSS chief

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‘If I sometimes say something in anger, then it is not Hindutva. The RSS or those following Hindutva do not believe in this,’ says Mohan Bhagwat

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat on Sunday said some of the statements made at a recent event titled ‘Dharam Sansad’, which kicked up a row, were not “Hindu words” and those following Hindutva would never agree with them.

He was speaking on the topic ‘Hindutva and National Integration’ at a lecture series organised by Lokmat Media group to mark the golden jubilee of its Lokmat Nagpur edition.

“The statements, which came out of the Dharam Sansad are not Hindu words, work or heart. If I sometimes say something in anger, then it is not Hindutva. The RSS or those following Hindutva do not believe in this,” he said.

The RSS chief was apparently referring to the Dharam Sansad held in Chhattisgarh recently, where Hindu religious leader Kalicharan Maharaj allegedly made derogatory statements against Mahatma Gandhi while eulogising his assassin Nathuram Godse.

Another ‘Dharam Sansad’ was held in Uttarakhand’s Haridwar in December, during which provocative speeches inciting violence against Muslims were allegedly made by participants. An FIR had been lodged under section 153A of the IPC (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language).

The Sangh chief said, “Even Veer Savarkar had said if the Hindu community gets united and organised, it will speak about the Bhagwad Gita and not about finishing or harming anyone.”

Speaking about whether the nation was on its way to become a ‘Hindu Rashtra’, Mr Bhagwat said, “It is not about creating Hindu Rashtra. (Whether) You accept it or not it is (Hindu Rashtra) there.” Mr Bhagwat said the ethos that represents our Constitution was Hindutva, which was the same as national integration.

He said the concept of national integration didn’t need uniformity because “to be different is not being separate”.

The Sangh doesn’t divide people, but patches up differences, he said, adding, “We go by this Hindutva.” Vijay Darda, chairman of the Editorial Board of Lokmat Media and former Rajya Sabha member, said the foundation of Lokmat’s Nagpur edition was laid by freedom fighter Jawaharlal Darda in 1971, which now had become a huge banyan tree.

The group will be organising several programmes till 2023 to mark the golden jubilee of the Nagpur edition, he said.

“We had organised an inter-religion conference, a rangoli contest and many other programmes as a part of the celebrations. Dr Bhagwat’s talk is also a part of it,” said Mr Darda.

He said the RSS as an organisation was working not only in villages, but also at the international level, and comprised swayamsevaks (volunteers) who selflessly toiled in the shakhas firm in their nationalistic beliefs.

They believe whatever they do is in national interest, Mr Darda said.



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