New Delhi: The word ‘Hindutva’ expresses identity, continuity of spirituality-based traditions and the entire wealth of value system in the land of Bharat, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat said Sunday in his annual Vijayadashmi speech at the organisation’s headquarters in Nagpur.
“When Sangh says Hindustan is Hindu Rashtra, it does not have any political or power centered concept in its mind. Hindutva is the essence of this Rashtra’s ‘Swa’(selfhood). We are plainly acknowledging the selfhood of the country as Hindu,” Bhagwat said, adding that Hindutva is applicable to 1.3 billion people of the country.
He further said that if one worked to “raise the general level of consciousness of a common man and nurture the intrinsic spirit of oneness with Hindutva as the guiding force, then in the near future Bharatvarsh will emerge as the torchbearer for the rest of the world.”
Elaborating on the concept of Swadeshi, the RSS supremo said, “The ‘Swa’ or ‘self’ in ‘Swadeshi’ refers to the same Hindutva. That spirit or ‘swa’ should be the compass directing our intellectual brainstorming and plans of action. ”
He also said Hindu culture has expressed itself in diverse forms, “but some groups are trying to spread hatred and aggression among sections of society by creating insecurity among them, stating that diversity will be finished if they identify themselves as “Hindu”.”
The RSS chief said ‘Hindu’ was a common denominator that honours and encompasses innumerable distinct identities and not merely a single caste’s lineage.
Bhagwat also listed various “noteworthy incidents” that took place in the last one year.
“In 2019, Article 370 became ineffective, then the Supreme Court gave Ayodhya verdict on 9 November. The entire nation accepted the verdict. On 5 August 2020, the groundbreaking ceremony of Ram temple was held. We witnessed patience and sensibility of Indians during these events,” Bhagwat said during his address, which, this year, was limited to an indoor event attended by 50 swayamsevaks (volunteers) due to Covid guidelines.
‘Organised violence unleashed in the name of anti-CAA protests’
Bhagwat said that the country saw many developments, but Covid-19 overshadowed everything.
“We witnessed anti-CAA protests which created tension in the country. Before it could be discussed further, the focus shifted on coronavirus this year. Coronavirus overshadowed all other topics,” the RSS chief said.
He also said that opportunists unleashed organised violence in the name of anti-CAA (Citizenship Amendment Act) protests.
“CAA does not oppose any particular religious community. But those who wanted to oppose this new law misled our Muslim brothers by propagating a false notion that it was aimed at restricting the Muslim population. Using CAA, opportunists unleashed organised violence in the name of protests,’ said Bhagwat.
Need to be ‘alert’ to deal with China
Speaking on the ongoing stand-off with China, Bhagwat said India needed to be more alert and militarily better equipped to deal with the neighbouring country.
Bhagwat also referred to “China’s expansionist attitude”, while urging the government to forge an alliance against China with its immediate neighbours like Nepal, Sri Lanka and others.
“Indian defence forces, government and the people remained unfazed and responded sharply to China’s boisterous efforts to invade our territories,” he said. However, he warned that India needed to be cautious as it gave a befitting reply to China.
The RSS leader was referring to the Indo-China border tensions between the two countries that also saw violent flare-up earlier in the Galwan Valley.
“It (China) didn’t expect this (response). So we don’t know how it will react. So what is the way forward? It is alertness and preparedness. We need to be more powerful than China in military preparedness, economic conditions, international relations and relation with neighboring nations,” added Bhagwat.
He also mentioned the “indomitable ethical-patience of our citizens”, which he added must compel China to reform its attitude. “But if push comes to shove we will not fall short of alertness, firmness and readiness. “We intend to be friendly with all. This is our nature. But mistaking our benevolence for weakness and attempts to disintegrate or weaken us by sheer brute force is unacceptable,” said Bhagwat adding “our reckless detractors should know this by now.”