• Puppet-master RSS is Taking on a More Open Role in the Indian Democracy

    Yogesh S

    May 30, 2018

    Image courtesy Newsclick

     

    Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is preparing for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in 2019. BJP president Amit Shah is attending a series of meetings with top functionaries of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and its frontal organisations, seeking to exchange ideas ahead of the 2019 general election.

    RSS Joint General Secretary Krishna Gopal chaired a meeting on May 28, 2018, in New Delhi, to discuss the government programmes and policies. The BJP Vice-President Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, General Secretary Ram Madhav and Secretary Ram Lal; Union ministers Rajyavardhan Rathore (Information and Broadcasting  minister), JP Nadda (health minister), Maneka Gandhi (women & child minister), Mahesh Sharma (culture minister), Prakash Javadekar (education minister) and Thawarchand Gehlot (Social justice minister), represented the government in the meeting and met the representatives of the various departments of the RSS.

    RSS has its departments, the social work wing, the education wing and the body that deals with ideological issues. Its cadre functions in all these departments. Representatives of these departments discussed with the ministers present in the meeting, the implementation of government policies. Speaking to Money Control, RSS all-India Prachar Pramukh Arun Kumar said, ‘’the various RSS organisations working in the same field occasionally come together to share their experiments, experiences and observations’’ and ‘’such group meetings are taking place every year since 2007.’’ This year, this meeting is being held in New Delhi from May 28 to 31.

    This clearly demonstrates the relationship that the ruling BJP government has with the Hindu fundamentalist body and is a puppet in the hands of the RSS. The ‘’experiments, experiences and observations’’ that Kumar is talking about are unaccounted for. What are these experiments? Whose experiences are these? Who is observing what? And who is the RSS to do this for the government? The presence of all the ministers of key portfolios in this ‘’sharing’’ makes us ask these questions yet again. Many have been pointing at the dependence of the BJP on RSS and the close functioning with this Hindu fundamentalist body.

    The former president, Pranab Mukherjee, who was with Congress, is to address the convocation of the RSS Pracharaks on June 7, 2018. With all these developments, the emergence of RSS, a Hindu fundamentalist body, as a prominent player in the functioning of Indian democracy is clear. The credit goes to the wish for ‘’Acche Din’’ and ‘’development’’, false promises made by the BJP to win in 2014 and its communal politics.

    With the popular slogan of Acche Din (good days) and development, the BJP formed its government in the centre in 2014. The Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the party national president of the BJP, Amit Shah and ministers have been in the news, time and again, not for the arrival of ‘’Acche Din’’ but for their divisive hate speeches. Four years of waiting for the promised Acche Din, along with their inability to fulfil their promises also showed the communal politics of the BJP.

    As Ram Puniyani observes, ‘’The coming to power of Modi in 2014 gave a signal to the so-called fringe groups that now it is their Government and they can get away with their hate speeches and action, with ease. It was a total uninhibited show by the RSS as for as spreading hatred, the foundation of violence is concerned. While even during previous UPA regime, RSS leaders indulged in hate speech, now it is a total dominance of theirs’ in matters of spreading hate.’’ For those who wonder, why is BJP invested in communalising, the answer is, it is the party’s ideology; the Hindu fundamentalist ideology of the RSS. It is the mantra to provoke emotive religious sentiments in the voters and bagging votes to come to power; thus making it easy for the RSS to realise it’s dream of Hindu Rashtra.

    Writing about the achievements of the RSS and BJP-led Sarkar at the centre, Purushottam Agarwal, notes ‘’The mob of Bhakts is really the achievement of PM Modi. A leader, even a celebrity, has supporters (and blind supporters too), but not everyone is so fortunate to have such supporters (“Bhakts”) who are ready to confront aggressively not only the opponents of their “hero” but even their own family members too.’’ Despite the failure of the PM in realising his promises in 2014; devastating economic policies like GST and demonetisation, the number of ‘’Bhakts’’ is seen to be constantly increasing. How is it that, a Prime Minister and a government is spared of their false promises? It is not because people are in awe of the performance of the government, it is because of what is being circulated as information.

    The recent sting operation by Cobrapost clarified that the RSS and BJP-led government controls the circulation of the information. There are a number of virtual mediums that are being used to hide the underperformance of the government and to divert the attention of the common public. It is not true that people are rejoicing in the fruits of Acche Din as some of the messages on WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter are being circulated. They decide, what should be said about the government and the Prime Minister. Is this strategy of the PM and BJP to divert the attention of the voters to bag votes, inspired by the ‘’experiments’’, ‘’experiences’’ and ‘’observations’’? The presence of Information and Broadcasting Minister in the ‘’sharing’’ with the RSS answers this question I suppose.

    Thus, this meeting of BJP, with the RSS, is to get the RSS cadre to start campaigning for the 2019 general elections and strategising for the campaign. We have to wait and watch the promises that the Prime Minister would make in his rallies for this election. No need to mention, we now know where these (false) promises are manufactured- in RSS.


     

    Yogesh S is part of the editorial collective of the Indian Writers' Forum.

    Co-published with Newsclick.

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