New Delhi: The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) believes that the practice of purdah pratha (veil tradition) among Hindu women is a result of Islamic influence on the subcontinent and that women were far more empowered in the Rig Vedic age.
This and the RSS’s position on a wide range of ideological, political and social issues are now being aired in a video series that the organisation, the ideological parent of the ruling BJP, has launched on its YouTube channel.
Often slammed for being too secretive, the RSS has launched the series, titled Gyan Shrinkhla (Knowledge Series), based on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Mann Ki Baat programme.
“It is seemingly getting a great response from the citizens as several of these videos have been watched by over by many in the organisation,” said Rajiv Tuli, the RSS media in-charge in Delhi. “We are experimenting in a bid to reach out to a broader audience.”
The Gyan Shrinkhla follows the format of a dialogue between the top Sangh functionaries.
One of the first videos, for instance, is a 12-minute clip featuring RSS joint general secretaries Krishna Gopal and Manmohan Vaidya. While Vaidya initiates the discussion by putting forward questions, Gopal responds and in the process, elaborates the Sangh’s stand on various issues.
Sample this: In one of the series, Vaidya questions Gopal on the condition of women in Hindu society and the fact that they are mistreated. Gopal responds, saying that women held high positions in ancient times and that they even chanted mantras in the Rig Veda era. He then goes on to add that only with the advent of Islam, were women considered inferior and that the parda pratha is the result of the Islamic influence on Hindu society.
The two then go on to address a serious of other issues such as the link between terrorism and Islam, the difference between a Hindu and an Indian and the need for a better education system.
The programme is recorded in front of a few people at panoramic locations in Rishikesh. Senior RSS functionaries believe that this attempt could clear many misconceptions regarding the Sangh.
The RSS is understood to have taken help in making the programme with independent directors affiliated with Sangh.