‘No one blamed President Biden for this’ — Hindu Right press compares US bank collapse to Adani crisis
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‘No one blamed President Biden for this’ — Hindu Right press compares US bank collapse to Adani crisis

ThePrint’s round-up of how pro-Hindutva media covered and commented on news and topical issues over the last couple of weeks.

Illustration: Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

Illustration: Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

New Delhi: The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s (RSS) Hindi mouthpiece, Panchjanya, has compared the collapse of two US banks — Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank — to the Adani controversy in India, saying that nobody in the US had taken to the streets to protest against the collapse.

It also accused short-seller Hindenburg Research of harming the Adani Group with its speculations while making a profit itself.

Among other subjects covered by pro-Hindutva writers this week were the RSS’s annual meet and its agenda, Prime Minister Narendra Modi being a strong candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize, what India’s two wins at the Oscars stand for, the concept of a Hindu Rashtra, and the Delhi budget.

Also read: ‘Stagnated secularists exhibiting their Hindu hatred’ — Hindu Right press blasts Raghuram Rajan

 ‘No Bankgate in the US’

On the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, Panchjanya wrote, “Neither America’s opposition took out a rally on the streets, nor got dressed in black clothes or tried to adjourn the Parliament Houses. No one reached the courts and no one blamed President Biden for this. Their media also did not show creativity to coin a word like ‘Bankgate’.”

It also targeted Hindenburg (for its report on the Adani group), asking how it could not predict the impending collapse, adding that its aim was to make short term speculations to harm the Indian company and make profit for themselves.

“Amidst the flood of fake credit and crumbling forts of riches, the question is, hiding their reality and pointing fingers at the rest, who are those people who describe Afghanistan-Pakistan as better than India in the index of hunger? To that India, which gave free food grains to 80 crore people for two years during the entire period of Corona and is giving it even today,” it argued in the editorial.

RSS sets agenda

Organiser wrote about the annual meeting of the Akhil Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha — the RSS’s top-level decision making body — held this month, and said the had meeting set the agenda for “Amrit Kaal” without discussing the 2024 elections.

The RSS also focussed on the need for special efforts to achieve objectives such as strengthening the family institution, creating a fraternity based harmonious society, and developing entrepreneurship with a Swadeshi spirit.

“The focus now is not just quantitative but qualitative expansion. With the swelling numbers and growing acceptability and expectations, Sangh has decided to tweak the training programmes and introduce a three-day preliminary orientation programme (Pravesh) so that more people contribute to the national objectives,” it said, while explaining the RSS agenda.

Many shakhas have identified the problems through community surveys and have initiated activities to resolve local issues, such as eradicating caste-based discrimination and maintaining temples, water bodies, and crematoriums.

It said that for the RSS, social harmony and environmental protection are the priority areas, along with an emphasis on civic duties.

The cover story of Organiser was also on the RSS meeting, where it noted that youth are enthusiastic about the Sangh, going by the number of joining applications by those between 20 and 25 years of age. The story noted that over 7,25,000 applications were received online during the period of 2017-2022.

Also read: George Soros funded farmers’ protests, embodies ‘evils’ of the West, says Hindu Right press

Modi for the Nobel Prize?

Right leaning JNU professor Makarand R. Paranjape wrote for firstpost.com how PM Narendra Modi could actually be a good candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize.

He said that though the statement attributed to Asle Toje, Deputy Leader of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, calling Prime Minister Modi the strongest contender for the Nobel Peace Prize, has turned out to be fake, “this does not mean that the idea will go away. In fact, Modi’s name has made the rounds for this prestigious prize many times earlier.”

He explained that this is the signal that India should broker an end to the war in Ukraine, as it is “without doubt doing behind the scenes”.

“Is it possible for India to step in and take advantage of this global adversity (the Ukraine-Russia war)? My direct and simple answer to this question is a resounding “yes.” Modi and Jaishankar must pull out all the stops to broker an end to this war and earn India’s prime minister the Nobel Prize in peace,” he wrote.

‘Oscar win for Indian ethos’ 

Panchjanya also included an article on the recent Oscar wins by two Indian films — ‘Naatu Naatu’ from RRR for the best song, and The Elephant Whisperers for the best short documentary — and how this victory is a celebration of the Indian ethos.  In the article, Sharmi Adhikary pointed out how not everyone was happy with the RRR win as some found the film “regressive”.

“…the success of a Telugu film on Indian as well as global spheres is turning out to be quite a salty truth to digest, especially when it is loaded with emphatic Hindu iconography and references from Ramayana, Mahabharata,” wrote Adhikary, citing actor Ratna Pathak Shah’s statement on the film. Media reports quoted Shah as saying the film looks backwards “while we should look forward”.

She also dismissed the criticism of The Elephant Whisperers that the film “did not deserve to win an award” just because it was helmed by Brahmins.

“The deep relationship with nature is what the colonisers attacked when they corrupted our land. For them, nature was only to be subverted and extracted from and not nurtured,” the author noted.

Hindu rashtra

Senior RSS leader Manmohan Vaidya wrote an article titled ‘A nation named Hindu and Sanatan its adjective’ for The Sunday Guardian, shedding more light on the concept of Hindu nation.

“The unique spirituality-centric view of life of this rashtra is known by the name Hindu across the world, which is why this rashtra is Hindu and its adjective is Sanatan. We did not coin this name because we never considered ourselves separate from the rest of humanity,” he wrote.

“The unique worldview of Bharat is eternal because the basis of it is spirituality; hence it is integral and hence holistic. Owing to this world view, Bharat realises the entire creation is interconnected — a singular consciousness manifested in varied expressions,” he said.

“Therefore, Bharat considers that there is coordination in the universe and not conflict,” wrote Vaidya, explaining the concept of India being eternal.

He added that for the Bharat of current times, our Constitution is the latest Smriti. The provisions for modifying this Constitution are enshrined within it only.

“The tact of periodically renovating the structure while retaining the base of the foundation is what Bharat has championed. It has ensured our civilisational continuity and renewal and it is this which makes it Sanatan,” the article added.

Delhi budget & freebies 

Swadeshi Jagran Manch’s national co-convenor Ashwani Mahajan asked the central government to put its foot down with respect to the Delhi government’s budget provisions, and its “freebie politics”.

In his blog post of 21 March, Mahajan said perhaps this is the first time in the history of India that budget proposals of the Delhi government have been returned by the central government with suggestions for amendments.

He pointed out that only 20 per cent capital expenditure has been made, and that the central government has argued that over Rs 4,789 crore has been allocated for free electricity, water, and free buses for women.

“The result of such freebies is that states are coming under huge debt and the quality of public services has come under severe stress. Significantly, Delhi is a prosperous region of the country with its per capita income being the second highest in the country after Goa. Due to this, the revenue of Delhi is also very high,” he wrote.

Mahajan also gave an example of how out of 54.5 lakh electricity consumers, 43.2 lakh people are being provided power either free of cost or at half price.” A big chunk of those, who can easily pay for electricity, are also being given electricity for free. The facilities are being badly affected and the debt on the government is increasing, so it cannot be justified,” he added.

(Edited by Smriti Sinha)

Also read: ‘SC now a tool for anti-nationals,’ says Hindu Right press on BBC documentary row