J.NandaKumar, is one of the top office bearers of the Worlds largest voluntary organization, RSS. He is a native of Pandalam in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala. He became an RSS Pracharak during his college days. He has held various positions like RSS Jilla Pracharak, Pranth Boudhik Pramukh and Kerala Saha Pranth Pracharak. For the past few years, he is holding the position of Akhila Bharathiya Saha-Prachar Pramukh of RSS.
Sri J.NandaKumar recently spoke to well known website for nationalistic thought #HaindavaKeralam.com at Bengaluru. Following are excerpts from the interview.
Today India is ruled by a former RSS Pracharak Narendra Modi. Does Sangh believe that the BJP lead government has been successful in delivering, in accordance with Sangh Ideology?
If we analyze the work done by the current government, anyone can easily say that it has lived up to the expectations of people and in accordance with the thoughts and ideology of RSS.
If we look in detail at the swearing in ceremony of the Prime Minister, all the leaders of SAARC nations were invited for the function. This, perfectly matches the RSS views on world. Any RSS functionary would definitely have been proud to see leaders of ‘Bharathiya Cultural Zone’ Bharat participating in the swearing in ceremony.
Thereafter in every step taken, be it River Ganga cleaning project, Swach Bharat Abhiyan or fulfillment of promises declared in BJP election manifesto, the government indeed has done well.
As an example, take the issue of cleanliness. Earlier it was on occasions like Gandhi Jayanthi that people spoke on the necessity of cleanliness. Even though functions on cleanliness were organized, they were rather restricted, with limited participation from society. But look what is happening now- the idea of cleanliness has snowballed into a mass movement, by involving society and changing social habits of society.
On the economy front, schemes like Jan Dhan Yojana have instilled ample enthusiasm, even among the poorest of poor in our country. The concept of ensuring that even the poor can always have their savings is solely due to the government’s broad visualization and thinking.
Look at the latest Digital India program as an example- the entire world has realized India’s potential through such programs. The world is now standing witness to the ensuing success and unfolding change.
With the exception of the antagonistic media, which of course has its own agenda of rumbling against the government, owing to their left leaning ideology that can never, by default appreciate the government success. But for the society as a whole, the government has been doing nothing but good- and people are optimistic.
‘Make in India’ or ‘Made in India’- what is best for India? What is Sangh’s point of view?
There are a handful of people who have attributed ‘Make in India’ concept as a to support crony capitalists. But I think this is distorted analysis. When we look at the Swadeshi concept, which was put forward by Sangh or Mahatma Gandhi or Veer Savarkar, it was never meant to create isolated islands. Swadeshi concept says, “If it (resource or commodity) is available around you, you have to be satisfied with that.”
As we take this approach and move from village to state and from state to country, we find that this is most applicable. There are many commodities which we are unable to produce ourselves. Petroleum, medicines etc are some of the striking examples. But these are products which we need in our day to day life and hence on a very regular basis. So it should be borne in mind that Sangh does not have any extremist concept on Swadeshi movement as it would lead us to isolation, on self-centric islands.
Another point to be borne in mind is the huge money involved. Mammoth funds are required to set up business. Just because we have allowed rich nations and corporates to setup business in India, it does not mean that the entire machinery of job generation and market has been surrendered to investors. ‘Make in India’ is not about that. Investors can produce in India, but on India’s terms and conditions. It will enable job generation on an enormous scale and a subsequent economic revival in India.
BJP has grown phenomenally in the recent Lok Sabha elections. Has it worked as a catalyst on RSS growth?
It is wrong to say that. Sangh, with its 90 years of work has been creating national awareness in every nook and corner of India. This, in a way, has helped BJP to come to power. It is not the other way where BJP government has helped the growth of Sangh.
Sangh has relentlessly worked to build consciousness in society about rights of people, battle against discrimination, oppression and suppression of poor and fight corruption. This has helped create a mind set in society where people have, on their own, risen to fight against such social evils. This has in turn resulted in a change in political equation in the country, rather than wrongly attributing RSS growth to BJP government formation.
If we screen closely, Sangh has had a well set plan to reach out to large sections of people and enhance its activities in the last couple of years. In last 10 years alone, Sangh had grown by 61%, which is tremendous. Though some people say that political change in the nation has enhanced the growth of Sangh, it is grossly wrong. If that was the case, Kerala would have been a Sangh stronghold with its share of 5600 shakhas and with a large number of Swayamsevaks, the largest in India. But this has never resulted in any political change in Kerala so far. Let us however not rule out changes in future though.
Similarly, if we look at the number of shakhas per state, Gujarat will fall in C grade with comparatively lesser number of Shakhas. But the finest developmental oriented political change has emanated from Gujarat, spreading to many other states as well.
So this argument is wrong. Measure the influence and strength of Sangh based on the work it is doing in society, which can even enable political change, but not just based on the political change.
Now that you spoke of Kerala and a solidly strong base of Sangh and affiliated organizations, why do you think BJP is failing to deliver in Kerala?
I am not an expert in analyzing and discoursing on politics. But still, I believe that the politics of alliances in Kerala, with 8-10 parties on each side has made a very polarized political situation. They have successfully built a mindset among the people of Kerala, about there being no alternative other than the two alliances. With this scheme, they have been ruling one after the other, turn by turn, however ugly their tenure has been.
Common man has pre-conceived notions about electoral victory. “Why should I vote for a party which is not going to win in Kerala? Rather vote for party which is bound to win,” is the notion of Keralites.
Secondly if we see the population statistics, based on the latest census, officially Hindus are 52% (unofficially they say Hindus are 48%), which means around 50% are from minority communities. In Kerala, these communities are quite well knit as a political force, unlike any other state of India. With this they are able to impose considerable influence on the government in Kerala and also make ample gains for their communities. Because of these benefits are not ready to flak away.
On the similar lines, the Communist Party can also be termed as a religion, with majority of the people believing in communist ideology being from Hindu base. As an analogy, if we study the number of Christians or Muslims in BJP, CPM has lesser ratio of Muslims or Christians with them. So, for name sake, Communist Party can be dubbed a Hindu organization.
So out of the total 50% Hindus 55-60% belongs to Communist Party which is very intact, just like Muslim and Christian voters. So there are three religions pitted against Hindus- Christians, Muslims and Communists. All together it is around 60-65 %. So BJP or any other organization with Hindu ideology has got a constituency of only of 35% of population. Currently BJP or Sangh is confined to this domain.
Thirdly, a tectonic shift is possible in Kerala’s political horizon if BJP is able to win one or two seats. CPM and Congress are both aware of this. Knowing well about this, there is an undeclared understanding between these three forces. There is a fourth force, the Congress. So a combined effort has gone into defeating BJP or RSS in Kerala. There are many examples to show this. Take the recent Aruvikkara, Nemam or Manjeswaram elections, where we can see these political adjustments. Members of these combined forces are even ready to sacrifice their own political future as far as such constituency is concerned. In Manjeswaram CPM will not hesitate to vote for a Muslim League candidate, at Nemam Muslim League or Congress will willingly vote for Communist Party candidate- because their sole agenda is to deny political space for BJP in Kerala. This kind of adjustment politics has been going on for many years.
Recently there have been many changes taking place in Kerala’s social scenario. The communities conveniently labeled as ‘backward’ for selfish political gains, have now started thinking differently. They had all long been supporting Communist Party. A portion of them had their allegiance with Congress for several years. But now, they have realized that there has been no betterment in the real sense of the word, as promised by Communists or Congress. These are mainly Hindu communities like Ezhava and other socially bereft communities.
The recent trend among Marxists has been to provide benefits to minorities in hope that they will lean towards them, at least in small percentage. There has had many raised eyebrows, especially with members of socially bereft communities questioning this. So all these social changes, coupled with Sangh’s growth can usher in mammoth change in Kerala.
Will BJP open its account in Kerala?
As discussed, a major change is happening in the ground level. It may lead to a tectonic shift in the near future.
Recent census shows that Muslims have a growth rate of 12.6%, while the Hindu growth rate is at 2.2%. How Sangh sees this demographic change?
Demographic change is being viewed as a matter of grave concern. It is not healthy for India. Minor differences can be understood, but this major difference shows that there are many underlying agendas behind this.
1. There is well planned Infiltrations to India.
2. Religious conversions taking place rampantly in India is being funded by illegal money coming from the Gulf region.
3. Existing personal laws are based on religion, more children are produced based on the support of religion, which is based on personal laws. If we study the Islamic movements of the world, we can discern that population is a major weapon for them. This is more dangerous than atomic bombs. They have used this to capture nations. In India too, the same is happening. A look at our history shows how, when the minority community grows in population, India has lost the places. Examples are Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
Poetically, one can sing that India is a garden filled with various types and colors of flowers, which depict religious variance living in unison and harmony. But these flowers grow in the soil that belongs to Hindutva. If we lose the soil or land, the flowers will perish. So protecting the soil is required.
As another poet says India is a multi-color drawing in a big canvas. But which is this big canvas? The canvas is Hindutva. Wherever the canvas is lost, there Bharata has gone or has lost. So it is important that Hindutva as a base should sustain. The unnatural war tactics with population as a tool should be banned with laws. On the other side proper education and awareness should be provided to everyone, especially people who are on this agenda.
Recently Dr Praveen Bhai Togadia of VHP had visited Kerala. He was suggesting that those with three or more children should be sent to jail. What is Sangh’s view?
Sangh believes in considering India’s strength and future, its financial stability and availability of resources for all its citizens. These are concerns and everyone should consider this as their responsibility. These glaring concerns can be achieved through awareness campaigns. Strict laws cannot enforce such things.