-Dr. Shreerang Godbole
Congress leader Digvijay Singh recently stated (26 Jan) that Savarkar had the original idea of the two-nation theory which was later adopted by Jinnah. This is not the first (and one may safely assume not the last) time that Veer Savarkar has been blamed for putting forth the two-nation theory. Notwithstanding Digvijay Singh’s political compulsions in spreading this piece of disinformation, a factual rebuttal is in order.
The entire case of the Savarkar-baiters rests on a solitary sentence culled out from his nearly 6000-page literature. Fortunately, Savarkar has himself answered the charge that he had put forth the two-nation theory. The sentence in question can be found in Savarkar’s Presidential address to the 19th session of the Akhil Bharat Hindu Mahasabha at Karnavati (Ahmedabad) in 1937. Savarkar stated, “India cannot be assumed today to be a unitarian and homogenous nation, but on the contrary there are two nations in the main; the Hindus and the Moslems, in India. If the critics bother to read the entire speech (available at http://www.savarkar.org/content/pdfs/en/hindu-rashtra-darshan-env002.pdf), it shall be evident to them that Savarkar had not advocated the two-nation theory.
It may be noted that Savarkar was one of the few Hindu leaders who had made a deep study of Islam from its scriptures. He had read a translation of the Quran even while he was a student in England. In the Andamans, Savarkar had read the Quran first in its English and subsequently Bengali and Marathi translations. Responding to the opinion of his Muslim friends that the real beauty of the Quran lies in its original, Savarkar asked them to read each page from the original and then had them translate it for his benefit into Hindi. As Savarkar describes, he heard them recite the Quran with great concentration and after keeping his mind clean and pure as a devout Muslim. In later life, Savarkar read several books written by Western authorities on the Quran. Savarkar’s deep study of Islam is evident from his numerous articles such as those on Kemal Pasha, Khilafat movement and various Islamic sects. Savarkar had learnt to read and write Urdu. Thus, Savarkar’s views on Islam and Muslims are not those of an ignorant bigot.
Savarkar’s Presidential address is not a run-of -the-mill political speech. After dwelling on the definition and significance of the word ‘Hindu’, the status of the Hindus as a nation unto themselves, the mission of the Hindu Mahasabha, unified Indian State and the cooperation of the minorities, Savarkar turned his attention to the attitude of the Muslims, He stated. “As it is, there are two antagonistic nations living side by side in India, several infantile politicians commit the serious mistake in supposing that India is already welded into a harmonious nation, or that it could be welded thus for the mere wish to do so. Our well-meaning but unthinking friends take their dreams for realities…The solid fact is that the so-called communal questions are but a legacy handed down to us by centuries of a cultural, religious and national antagonism between the Hindus and the Moslems. When time is ripe you can solve them but you cannot suppress them by merely refusing recognition of them.” It is in that context that he made that statement. The Islamscholar, historian and hard-headed realist in Savarkar was simply stating a bland fact and not endorsing it. This is further confirmed two sentences later when he referred to the options before the Hindus under the circumstances. He stated, “…to form an Indian State in which none is allowed any special weightage of representation and none is paid an extra price to buy his loyalty to the State. Mercenaries are paid and bought off, not sons of the Motherland to fight in her defence. The Hindus as a nation are willing to discharge
their duty to a common Indian State on an equal footing.” It is noteworthy that the President of the Hindu Mahasabha was not seeking any rights for the Hindus that he was not willing to grant to the Muslims! Throughout his life, Savarkar advocated equal rights for all citizens in a unified Indian State.
Misunderstanding was created after Savarkar made the above utterances. Hence, Savarkar clarified his statement to journalists on 15 August 1943 in the office of the Marathi weekly Aadesh in Nagpur. He also clarified his position in an interview given in Mumbai on 23 August 1943. The interview was published in the Aadesh dated 28 August 1943. Given below is an English translation of Savarkar’s clarification as published in the Marathi weekly Aadesh dated 23 August 1943.
“I had clarified this (mystatement that there are two nations in Hindusthan) in my Nagpur interview. But instead of reporting this, journalists simply reported that I accept the two-nation theory. This has resulted in the whole misunderstanding. I am surprised that a storm has been raised now on this issue. Because I have always been referring to the two-nation theory right from my Ahmedabad speech. It is a historic truth that the Mussulmans are a .nation.. I had clarified the historical and racial background of this theory in Nagpur. Islam is a theocratic nation based on the Koran right from its inception.
This nation never had geographical boundaries. Wherever the Mussulmans went, they went as a nation. They also came to Hindusthan as a .nation.. Wherever they go,Mussulmans shall either remain foreigners or rulers. As per the Koran, those who are not Mussulmans are kafirs, enemies of Islam. Even today, after praying in the mosque,Mussulmans ask for atonement for committing the sin of living in a kafir-ruled state. As per the principle of Mussulmans, the earth is divided into two nations: Dar-ul Islam (land of Islam) and Dar-ul Harb where Islam does not rule (enemy land). As per their religious command, their campaign on Hindusthan was as a separate nation. They conquered the Hindu Nation as a enemy nation, not as One Nation.
The Hindu Nation arose again and having defeated the Mussulmans at various places, saved the whole of Hindusthan to establish Hindu Padpadshahi also as a separate Hindu Nation opposed to the Muslim nations. This history certainly cannot be denied. In the recent past, the educated class among the Hindus mostly through the vehicle of the Congress tried its utmost to champion territorial nationalism by saying that at least in Hindusthan, Hindus and Mussulmans are one nation because they reside in one country. Though the effort was well-intentioned, the Mussulmans never gave up their principle of theocratic or scriptural nationalism and the feeling of being a nation separate from the Hindu Nation. And they never shrank from stating this right. Seizing the right opportunity and taking advantage of the Congress. policy of surrender, the Muslim League once again emphatically put forth that same old theory of the Mussulman nation being a separate nation. If one turns a blind eye to this reality, the Hindu Nation is bound to be divided. So we do not care if you consider yourself to be a separate nation. The effort towards Hindu consolidation is to emphatically state that the Hindu Nation is a self-evident and unified Nation. The Mahasabha came forward as a separate and mighty national organization of the Hindu Nation. Hindu Nationalism gave a cutting edge to the effort of consolidation.
People still do not understand the important thing that stating the fact of Mussulman and Hindu nations being present in Hindusthan is not to accept the Pakistani adamancy of carving a country of the Mussalmans. If I call someone a grihasta (householder), it does not make him a resident of my griha (house). Whether the Mussulmans consider themselves a separate nation or not, at least as far as Hindusthan is concerned, they are a minority compared to Hindus. Like the English, they have come here as foreigners and if they want to stay in Hindusthan, they should do so only as a minority community. An independent, unified, indivisible and single State should be established in Hindusthan. Hindusthan is the Fatherland and the Holyland of Hindus and even today they are an overwhelming majority in this their country. Hence, even if there are in this country, by force or tyranny, the English, Portuguese, French or those invaders such as the Americans or Japanese who call themselves a nation., Hindusthan should be considered politically a nation of the Hindus as per the principle of peoples’ power. If they want, minorities may stay here merely as minority communities. This is the objective; this is the oath of Hindu consolidation. This objective should be achieved through consensus if possible. Else, by strength and should opportunity arise, by force, this or the next generation of Hindus shall achieve this objective. While two or two hundred nations that consider themselves separate from the Hindus have presently entered Hindusthan by force and are demanding Partition of Hindusthan, it is not by a woolly-headed and cowardly denial of this fact but rather by understanding, facing and changing it shall an independent, undivided and indivisible Hindu nation alone shall without doubt, remain in Hindusthan. But as in our history when the Hindu Nation successfully rallied under the Hindu Flag, the Hindus should come forward and rise unitedly.”
Savarkar was then asked that if Hindus and Mussulmans are two nations, how will they form a single nation?. He answered, “ We should not confuse between Nation. And State.. Even if the State goes, the Nation remains. When the Mussulmans were ruling over us, the government (State) was theirs. But the existence of the Hindus was most certainly intact. Even so, there is no problem in a common State of Hindus and Mussulmans. In the past, we had nations (rashtra) such as Maharashtra, Saurashtra, Devrashtra (near Berar). Where are these nations? They mingled with each other. The Shakas and Huns came to Hindusthan as nations. But what is the evidence of their existence today? We digested them. So if the Mussulmans want, they could amicably stay with Hindus as a minority community. In the past, nations such as Prussia, Bavaria etc. existed in Germany. But today, they have all together formed the German nation. By law, no one in Germany may call himself Prussian or Bavarian but German only.
“Regarding the Mussulmans in Hindusthan, it may be said that you (Hindus) are trying to rope them with you but do the Mussulmans so desire? In the end, .desire. is the most influential and important factor for a .nation.. If they consider themselves separate, what is achieved merely by saying that you consider them your own? And hence, we need not worry whether they come with us or not. And there is no reason why we should sacrifice Hindu interests and plead with them to perforce say that they are not a separate nation. Hindus are a nation unto themselves. Considering this, the Hindus should continue the freedom struggle by consolidating themselves irrespective of whether the Mussulmans come with them or not. If they so desire, they may stay here, else they shall go where it pleases them.”
Savarkar’s consistent view on this subject was best summarized by him in his Presidential address in Nagpur in 1938. He said, ““It is absurd to call us (Hindus) a community in India. The Germans are the Nation in Germany ad the Jews a Community. The Turks are a Nation in Turkey and the Arab or the Armenian minority a Community. Even so the Hindus are a Nation in India-in Hindusthan and the Moslem minority a Community.”
It is undeniable that Muslims consider themselves as a nation or Ummah. It was not Savarkar’s invention nor did he ever endorse this Islamic concept. It is noteworthy that the Afro-American religious movement started by Wallace D. Fard Muhammad in Detroit, Michigan in 1930 was named ‘Nation of Islam’.
To say that Jinnah adopted Savarkar’s idea is arrant nonsense! Can Digvijay Singh or his ilk quote a single sentence from Jinnah’s speeches or writings where he has named Savarkar as his source of inspiration? In a letter to newly elected Congress President
Badruddin Tyabji (1888), Sir Syed Ahmed wrote, “Is it supposed that that the different castes and creeds living in India belong to one nation, or can become nation, and that their aims and aspirations be one and same? I think it is quite impossible.” The answer given by Tayyabji, the former President of Digvijay Singh’s Grand Old Party is even more revealing. Tayyabji writes, “Now I am not aware of anyone regarding the whole of India as one Nation and if you read my Inaugural address, you will find it distinctly stated that there are numerous communities or nations in India…”(Source Material for a History of the Freedom Movement in India, Vol.2, pp70-73). The idea of an independent, sovereign Islamic State carved out of India was first publicly stated by Sir Muhammad Iqbal in his Presidential address to the Muslim league in 1930. Iqbal said, “I would like to see the Punjab, the North West Frontier Province, Sind and Baluchistan amalgamated into a single State. Self-Government within the British Empire or without the British Empire, the formation of a consolidated North-West Indian Muslim State appears to be to me the final of the Muslims at least of the North-Western India.”
Zulfiquar Ali Bhutto accurately observed that “the starting point of Pakistan goes back a thousand years to when Muhammad-bin-Qasim set foot on the soil of Sind and introduced Islam in the sub-continent”
It is a travesty that Congressmen who accepted the Islamic demand of a separate State on the basis of religion and Leftists who fervently believe India to be a hotchpotch of multiple nationalities should hurl the charge of advocacy of the two-nation theory on Savarkar, a lifelong champion of a unified India.
(The writer is a Pune-based specialist in diabetes and hormone disorders. He has
authored books on Islam, contemporary Buddhist-Muslim relations and played a major role in developing http://www.savarkar.org)
Lecture #1: https://arisebharat.wordpress.com/?p=5281
Lecture #2: https://arisebharat.wordpress.com/?p=5290
Lecture #3: https://arisebharat.wordpress.com/?p=5294
24th April 1965
C H A P T E R- 4
Yesterday we had discussed the functions of State in a Nation. According to the Bharatiya traditions, a nation is an organic living entity which has come into existence on its own and has not been made up or created by any group of persons. A nation brings forth a variety of institutions to fulfill its needs, as well as to give concrete shape to its inner fundamental nature. The State is one of these institutions which though being an important institution, is not supreme. In our literature where the duties of a king are referred to, his importance is definitely recognized. This is so, perhaps, to make him realize his immense responsibility. He exercised tremendous influence on the lives and character of the people. Hence he had to give due attention to his own behavior. Bhishma has said the same thing, in Mahabharat when he was asked whether circumstances make a king or a king makes the circumstances. He categorically stated that the king shapes the circumstances. Now some persons interpret this to mean that the considered the king above all. But this is not true. He did not suggest that the king was above Dharma. It is true that the king wielded a great deal of influence and that he was the protector of Dharma in society, but the king could not decide what constitutes Dharma. He only saw to it that people led their lives according to Dharma. In a way he was equivalent to present day executive.
In the present State, the executive has the responsibility to execute the laws properly, but does not enact laws. When the executive does not function with honesty and efficiency, the laws are entirely disregarded, as we see very well around us. We can well say today “Executive is responsible for the present evils to a great extent.” After all why has prohibition failed? Who is responsible for the failure?? When those very persons who have been entrusted with the task of implementing prohibition. Start taking monthly allowances from the bootleggers, how is the prohibition policy to succeed? The executive is, therefore, responsible for the proper enforcement of law. This is the meaning of Bhishma’s statement. It would be a mistake to interpret it as acceptance of approved supremacy of a monthly allowances from the bootleggers, how is the prohibition policy to succeed? The executive is therefore, responsible for the proper enforcement of law. This is the meaning of Bhisma statement. It would be a mistake to interpret it as acceptance of approved supremacy of a king. If this were so, how was it that the tyrant king Venu was removed by the Rishis and Prithu was enthroned?
This action by the Rishis was never condemned by any one in history. On the contrary it was hailed by everyone. When the supremacy of Dharma is accepted as a principle, then, though the authority of Dharma, the Rishis derive a right to remove a king who defaults in his duty. Otherwise, it would have been absolutely illegal to remove a king from his throne. Thus if a King does not act according to Dharma, it becomes the duty of everyone to remove him. In Western countries, either a King was removed by some other king or people rejected the sovereignty of king altogether. There king was a representative of God and could under no circumstances be removed at least in principle.
In our socio-political set-up, the king and the State were never considered supreme. Not only that, there were other important institutions, (besides the State, which was only one of them) to regulate and to help carry on the social life. Those institutions had been organized both on horizontal and vertical level, i.e. on original and occupation basis. We have evolved Panchayats and Janapada Sabhas. The mightiest of the king did not ever disturb the Panchayats. Similarly there were associations on the basis of trade. These two were never disturbed by the State; on the contrary their autonomy was recognized. They devised their own rules and regulations in their fields. The Panchayats of different communities, shrines, nigams, Village Panchayats, Janapada Sabhas and such other Organization used to set- up regulations. The function of the state was mostly to see that these rules are observed by the persons concerned. The State never interfered with the affairs of these associations. Thus the State was concerned only with some aspects of life of the Society.
Similarly, in the economic field many institutions are created. We have to think what should be the nature of our economic structure. We must have such an economic system which helps in the developments of our humane qualities, or civilization and enables us to attain a still higher level of all round perfection. We should have a system which does not overwhelm our humane quality; which does not make us slaves of its own grinding wheels. According to our concept, man attains God like perfection as a result of development. What structure, what regulation should be specified in our economic system if we wish to achieve this goal? Let us, consider this point.
Economic system must achieve the production of all the basic things essential for the maintenance and development of people as well as the protection and development of the Nation. Having satisfied the basic minimum requirements, the question naturally arises, whether there should be more production for greater property and happiness. The Western societies consider it most essential and even desirable to go on continuously and systematically increasing the desires and needs of man. There is no upper limit in the context. Normally desire precedes the efforts at producing the things desired. But now the position is reverse. People are induced to desire and use the things that have been and are being produced. Instead of producing to meet the demand, the search is on the markets for the goods already produced; if the demand does not exist, systematic efforts are made to create demand. This has become the chief characteristic of the western economic movement. Earlier, production followed the demand, now demand allows the production. Consider the use of tea for example. Tea was produced because people desired and wanted it. But Tea was produced and we were induced to develop taste for tea. Now tea is a common man’s drink. It has become a part of our life. Similar is the case of vegetable ghee. Did anyone ever want to use it? It was first produced and then we were taught to use it. If whatever is manufactured is not consumed, there will be depression. Some of us many remember the great depression of 1930-32. There was abundance of goods at that time but there was no demand. Therefore factories had to be closed down.
Bankruptcy and unemployment were widespread. Thus now-a-days it is most important that what is being produced must be consumed. The Editor of “Organiser”, an English Weekly, had gone to USA for a visit sometime ago. Upon his return, he related an interested instance. There is a factory producing “Potato-peelers”, a device for peeling potatoes. The production of this factory outstripped the demand for the device. The management of the firm faced the problem of finding some way by which people may be induced to buy more potato peelers. They called a meeting of all the salesmen of the firm. Among the suggestions put forward, one was to make the color of the handle similar to that of potato peel. so that along with the peel. the peeler may also be dumped in the garbage, often by mistake. Thus there may be greater demand. Also, the product was offered in a more attractive packing. Now this economic structure is not merely consumption oriented but is clearly leading to destruction. Throw away the old one and buy a new one! Rather than satisfying the need and demand from people. to create fresh demand has become the aim of modern economics.
Supposing that we need not worry about the limited supply of natural resources, there is yet the question of balance in Nature. There is a relationship in different parts of Nature. If from the three sticks standing with mutual support, one is removed, the other two will automatically fall. The present economic system and system of production are fast disturbing this equilibrium of nature. As a result on the one hand new products are manufactured for satisfying ever increasing desires, on the other hand new problem arise every day, threatening the very existence of the entire humanity and civilization. It is essential, therefore, to use up that portion of the available natural resources which the nature will be able to recoup easily. When the fruits are taken, the fruit tree is not injured: it may even be helpful to the tree. However, in the effort to take a greater harvest from the land chemical fertilizers are used which in a few years time render the land altogether infertile. Lakhs of acres of land lie barren in America due to this factor. How long this dance of destruction can go on?
The destruction provides for depreciation fund to replace the machines when worn out. Then how can we neglect the depreciation fund for nature. From this point of view, it must be realized that the object of our economic system should be, not extravagant use of available resources, but a well regulated use. The physical objects necessary for a purposeful, happy and progressive life must be obtained. The Almighty has provided as much. It will not be wise, however, to engage into a blind rat-race of consumption and production as if man is created for the sole purpose of consumption. Engine needs coal for its proper working, but it has not been produced merely to consume coal. On the contrary it is only proper always to see that with the minimum coal consumption, maximum energy is produced. This is the economic view point. Keeping in view the aim of human life, we must endeavor to see how with the minimum of fuel, man proceeds to his goal with the maximum speed. Such a system alone can be called civilization. This system will not think of merely a single aspect of human life but of all its aspects including the ultimate aim. This system will not thrive on the exploitation of nature but will sustain nature and will in turn itself be nourished. Milking rather than exploitation should be our aim. The system should be such that overflow from nature is used to sustain our lives.
If such human angle inspires the economic system than our thinking on the economic question will undergo through transformation. In the Western economics, whether it is capitalist or socialist, value has the most important and central position. All economic theories centre around value. It may be that the analysis of value is very important from the point of view of the economist but, those social philosophers which are based entirely on value are for incomplete, inhuman and to some extent unethical take. For example, the slogan commonly heard now-a-days “one must earn his bread”. Normally communists use this slogan but even the capitalists are not fundamentally in disagreement with it. If there is any difference between them, it is only as regards who earns and how much. The capitalists consider capital and enterprise as important components of production and hence if they take a major share of profits, they think it is their due. On the other hand, communists believe only labor to be the main factor in production. Therefore they concede major share of production to the laborers. Neither of these ideas is correct. Really speaking, our slogan should be that the one who earns will feed and every person will have enough to eat.. The right to food is a birthright. The ability to earn is a result of education and training. In a society even those who do not earn must have food. The children and the old, the diseased and the invalids, all must be eared for by the society. Even society generally fulfills this responsibility.
The social and cultural progress of mankind ties in the readiness to fulfill this responsibility. The economic system must provide for this task. Economics as a science does not account for this responsibility. A man works not merely for bread alone, but also to shoulder this responsibility. Otherwise those who have had their meals would no longer work. Any economic system must provide for the minimum basic necessities of human life to everyone. Food, clothing and shelter constitute, broadly speaking these basic necessities. Similarly, the society must enable the individual to carry out his obligations to the society by properly educating him. Lastly, in the event of an individual falling a prey to any disease society must arrange for his treatment and maintenance. If a government provides these minimum requirements, then only it is a rule of Dharma. Otherwise, it is a rule of Adharma. Describing the King Dilip, Kalidas has said in Raghuvansha “Being responsible for the maintenance, protection and education of his subjects, he was their true farther. Others were merely instrumental in giving them their birth”. The description of king Bharat after whom our country has been named Bharat, also runs similarly, i.e. “by maintaining and protecting his subjects he was called Bharat.” This is his country, Bharat, if in this country maintenance and protection are not guaranteed, and then the name Bharat is meaningless.
Education – A Social Responsibility
To educate a child is in the interest of the Society itself. By birth a child is an animal. He becomes a responsible member of the society only by education and culture. To charge fees for something which is in the interest of the society itself a rather odd. If due to the inability to pay the fees, children are left without education, will the society endure the situation for long? We do not charge fee from trees for sowing the seed and caring for the supplying. On the contrary we invest our money and efforts. We know that when the tree grows, we shall reap fruits.
Education is a similar investment. An educated individual will indeed serve the society. On the other hand it will not be surprising if people grow indifferent to the society, which leave them to fend for themselves. Before 1947, in all the princely states In India, no fees were charged for education. The highest education was free. In the Gurukulas, even food and lodging were arranged without any charge. The student used to go to the society for “Bhiksha”. No householder would refuse the Bhiksha to the student. In other words, society used to bear the burden of education. Similarly, it is rather surprising that medical treatment must be paid for. In fact, medical treatment also should be free as it was in this country in the past. Now-a-days one has to pay even to gain entrance to a temple. In Tirupathi, to enter the Balaji temple, there is a charge of 0.25 paise. However, at noon for one hour, there is Dharma Darshan, which means, during that time, no ticket is needed, as if at other times there is Adharma Darshan. The society should guarantee to all members minimum requirements for maintenance and progress of every individual. Now the question arises that if everyone is to be guaranteed the minimum necessities, where will the resources for all this come from?
Guarantee of Work
It is clear that the resources must be produced by our own efforts. Therefore, where a right to a guaranteed minimum is recognized, any individual who does not share in the efforts to produce is a burden to the society. Similarly any system which obstructs the production activity of the people is self destructive. Such a system will not enable the individuals to fulfill their responsibility. Not only that, but even if the requirements of an individual are met, while he does not share in the efforts, his personality will not develop fully, his progress as a human being will be distorted and lop-sided. Man has stomach as well is hands. If he has no work for his hands, he will not get happiness even if he gets food to satisfy his hunger. His progress will be obstructed. Just as a barren woman experiences emptiness in life and consequent dissatisfaction, so does a man without work. The guarantee of work to every able bodied member of the society, should be the aim of our economic system. Today we witness a very strange situation. On the one hand, a ten-year-old child and seventy-year-old man are toiling and on the other hand youth of twenty five is driven to suicide for want of work. We shall have to remove this mismanagement. God has given hands to every man but by themselves hands have a limited capacity to produce. They need assistance of capital in the form of machines.
Labor and capital bear the same relation to each other as that between man and nature. The world is a creation of these two. Neither of them can be neglected.
For capital formation it is essential that a part of production be saved from immediate consumption and be used for further production, in future. Thus capital can be formed only by restraint on consumption. This is the basis of capital formation to which Karl Marx refers to as “surplus value” in his treatise. In the capitalist system the industrialist creates capital with the help of this surplus value. In a socialist system, the state undertakes this task. In both the systems, the entire production is not distributed among the workers. If production is carried on through centralized large-scale industries, the sacrifice on the part of the worker in creating the capital is not given due recognition. The advantage in decentralization is in the fact that the workers have a sense of direct participation in the management of this surplus value or capital. Machine is the most common form of capital. Machine was created in order to reduce the content of physical labor in production and to increase the productivity of the worker. Machine, therefore, is an assistant of the worker and not his competitor. However, where the human labor came to be considered as a commodity to be purchased with money, the machine became the competitor of the human being. The principal drawback of the capitalist view point in the fact that by making the machine a competitor of human labor and thereby displacing and competitor of human labor and thereby displacing and subjecting human being to privations the very purpose of creating machine has been defied. Machine cannot be blamed for this. It is the fault of the economic and social system which cannot distinguish between the object and the instrument. We shall have to take into account the limitations on usefulness of machines and decide on its field of application. From this point of view to import the machinery from Western countries, where shortage of manpower was the guiding factor in the design of machines would be a serious mistake.
The merits of machine are, not independent of time and place. Machines are a product of the modern science but not its representatives. Scientific knowledge is not a monopoly of any particular country. But its application has to take into account the particular condition of each country and its requirements. Our machines must not only, by tailored for our specific economic means, but also must, at least, avoid conflict with our socio-political and cultural objectives, if not support them. Professor Vishvesaraya has said in one of his books, that while considering the system of production one must take into account the seven ‘M’s. These are man, material, money, management, motive power, market and machine. The skill and ability of the workers or those who should be provided with work must be considered. Easy availability of the required raw material and the quality and properties of the raw materials available cannot be ignored. We must also think of how much money is available as capital. How this capital can be increased and at what rate? How best it can be utilized for maximum production? How much of it should be put in the fixed assets and how much should be kept in the liquid form? We must also pay attention to the form of power available in the country in addition to the human and animal labor.
Wind, water, steam oil, gas, electricity and atomic power can supply the motive power. Of these, which form of power can be obtained in what quantity and without being uneconomic must be thought of while deciding upon our methods of production. In the same way managerial skills are also important and deserve the attention. If the ability to co-ordinate the efforts of a dozen workers are wanting, all of them will remain unemployed. It is also necessary to think of the usefulness of the goods produced to the society. This means that production of any particular commodity cannot be justified economically without the consideration of the market it commands. Taking into consideration all these factors we should design suitable machines. Instead, we find now-a-days that we install the machines first and try to coordinate all other factors afterwards. Other countries of the world did not progress in this fashion. Otherwise new machines would not have been invested. We are importing the machines and hence, we have little knowledge. We shall have to develop a Bharatiya technology.
None of the seven factors is unchangeable. In fact each one keeps constantly changing. Those who are entrusted with the task of planning must think of how the change is directed towards progress, how physical hardship is reduced, and waste of energy is minimized. As an illustration let us take the low productivity of our worker. It can be increased by using machines, and it is necessary to do so. But if the machine is such that requires only a few men to run it, then the rest of the people will be thrown out of employment. If the machine has to be imported from other countries at such a heavy cost that the additional production it causes will be insufficient to make it economic, then such a machine is not suitable to our requirements. Just as to let a part of the installed capacity of a factory remain unutilised is a losing proposition, so also to let the people of this country remain unemployed is a losing proposition. May, this is even worse.
Whereas a machine ties up only the capital invested in it in past, the unemployed people have to be fed, which is continuous and unending drain on resources, consumed at double the speed. Therefore instead of the usual exhortation “Every worker must get food”, we must think of “Everyone who eats must get work”, as the basis of our economy. No doubt charakha has to be replaced by machines but not necessarily automatic machines everywhere. Full employment must be a primary consideration and then the rest of the six factors suit this.
Man’s Place In The Economy
The use of manpower and the employment question will have to be thought of in the context of the human being as a whole, as an integral being. The economic theories of the past few centuries and the structure of society based on these theories, have resulted in a thorough devaluation of the human being. His personality is altogether irrelevant to the economic set up. Capitalist economy recognizes only an “economic man”, whose all decisions are based entirely on calculations of gain and loss, in terms of material wealth. For this economic man, five rupees are always more than four rupees. He works solely to gain more wealth, and execs to get the maximum gain. For him, just like other commodities, human labor is a commodity to be bought and sold in the market. This is free enterprise. It holds all other restriction and regulations unjust, save the brake of competition. In the race no one is prepared to stop and give a helping land to the weak, who is left behind; elimination of the weak is considered just and natural.
He is uneconomic, marginal unit, not fit to exist. This is what it advocates. By the elimination of such marginal units, the economic power accumulates in the hands of a few. This is considered normal and natural is capitalist system. But when monopoly is a established, even the check of competition ceases to operates. In such a. situation the incentive resulting from competition is no longer available. Prices are arbitrarily fixed and quality of products deteriorates. Even as regards the consumer’s needs, the capitalist is guided not by the necessities and desires of the consumer, but by his purchasing power. The needs of the wealthy and the well fed are attended to rather than those of the poor and the hungry. As a result where countless varieties of goods are produced for he needs of the wealthy, even the basic necessities of life for the poor become scarce. The centralization and monopolization of reduction totally undermine the influence of the consumer. The markets are so organized that the consumer has to go by standard products. This standardization is on the increase at such a pace that individual preference of the consumer is ignored. Like the books in the library, even human beings are allotted numbers as consumers. The system which boasts of giving highest importance to the individual has ironically destroyed all individuality. Clearly, the capitalist system is incapable of helping the development of an integral human being.
Socialist System Is A Reaction
Socialism arose as a reason to capitalism. But even socialism failed to establish the importance of the human being. Socialists contented themselves by merely transferring the ownership of capital in the hands of the State. But the State is even more of an impersonal institution. All the business of the State is conducted by rigid rules and regulations. Generally, there is no place for individual discretion and even where such discretion is allowed, the slightest laxity in the sense of duty and social responsibility on the part of the administrators’ results in corruption and favoritism. The capitalistic system thought merely of the economic man, but left him free in other fields where they could exercise his individuality. The socialist system went much further thinking only of the abstract man. After that, there was no scope for the development of the individual personality based on diverse tastes and abilities. The needs and preferences of individuals have as much importance in the socialist system as in a prison manual. There is no such thing as individual freedom in the socialist system
State’s Claims on Individual
There is no private property in a socialist society. This removes the problems attendants to the institution of private property. However., the incentive for production and conservation of resources and economy in utilization accompany the institution of private property. There has been no alternative arrangement to preserve these. The State is made supreme and sole authority in all matters. Individual citizen is reduced to mere cog in this giant wheel. There are no provisions to inspire the individual to fulfill his role. As Djilas states, the class of old fashioned exploiters has been eliminated, but a new class of bureaucratic exploiter has come into existence. Karl Marx put forward, in his analysis of history, that capitalism contains the seeds of its own destruction and that communism is a natural and inevitable successor to capitalism.
This concept may be helpful in fostering faith in the communist about their ultimate victory but certainly such a determinist view destroys the urge for reforms and dynamism in man. He is no longer the creator of a new order; he is merely incidental to a predetermined historic process. His task is only to accelerate the process. Therefore, even as he tries to organize workers, he cares little for their welfare, but uses them as mere tools for the revolution. The dialectic materialism of Marx, too, operates only so long as state is note established as supreme after destroying the capitalists. Thereafter, the state puts a stop to the operation of the principle of dialectic materialism. In the name of crushing and counter revolutionaries, the state becomes more and more totalitarian. The day when the state is to wither away yielding place to a stateless society remains a mere dream. In fact according to the Marxist view, to obstruct the process of these antitheses, is itself reactionary. Marx is thus falsified by his own standards. Both these systems – Capitalist as well as Communist, have failed to take account of the Integral Man, his true and complete personality and his aspirations. One considers him a mere selfish being lingering after money, having only one law, the law of fierce competition, in essence the law of the jungle; whereas the other has viewed him as a feeble lifeless cog in the whole scheme of things, regulated by rigid rules, and incapable of any good unless directed. The centralization of power, economic and political, is implied in both. Both, therefore, result in dehumanization of man. Man, the highest creation of God. is losing his own identity. We must re-establish him in his rightful position, being him the realization of his greatness, reawaken his abilities and encourage him to exert for attaining divine heights of his latest personality. This is possible only through a decentralized economy. We want neither capitalism nor socialism. We aim at the progress and happiness of “Man”, the Integral Man. The protagonists of the two systems fight with ‘Man’ on the state. Both of them do not understand man, nor do they care for his interests.
Our Economic System
The Objectives of our Economy should be
- An assurance of minimum standard of living to every individual and preparedness for the defense of the nation.
- Further increase above this minimum standard of living whereby the individual and the nation acquires the means to contribute to the world progress on the basis of its own ‘Chiti’.
- To provide meanings employment to every able bodies citizens by which the above two objectives can be realized and to avoid waste and extravagance in utilizing natural resources.
- To develop suitable machines for Bharatiya conditions (Bharatiya Technology) taking note of the availability and nature of the various factors of production (Seven ‘M’s).
- This system must help and not disregard the human being, the individual. It must protect the cultural and other values of life. This is requirement which cannot be violated except at a risk of great peril.
- The ownership, state, private or any other form of various industries must be decided on a pragmatic and practical basis.
These are a few general directions which we must bear in mind while developing our economy. “Swadeshi” and “Decentralization” are the two words which can briefly summarize the economic policy suitable for the present circumstances. Centralization and monopolization have been the order of the day for all these years, knowingly or unknowingly. The planners have become prisoners of a belief that only large-scale centralized industry is economic and hence without worrying about its ill-effects, or knowingly but helplessly, they have continued in that direction. The same has been the fate of “Swadeshi”. The concept of “Swadeshi” is ridiculed as old fashioned and reactionary. We proudly use foreign articles. We have grown over independent upon foreign aid in everything from thinking, management, capital, methods of production, technology, etc. to even the standards and forms of consumption. This is not the road to progress and development. We shall forget our individuality and become virtual slaves once again. The positive content of “Swadeshi” should be used as the cornerstone of reconstruction of our economy.
For want of time, I have not touched the natural aspects of economic structure. But one thing is clear that many old institutions will yield place to new ones. This will adversely affect those who have vested interests in the old institutions. Some others who are by nature averse to change will also suffer by efforts of reconstruction. But disease must be treated with medicine. Strength can be gained only from exercise and hard work. Therefore, we still have to discard the status-quo mentality and usher in a new era. Indeed our efforts at reconstruction need not be clouded by prejudice or disregard for all that is inherited from our past. On the other hand, there is no need to cling to past institutions and traditions which have outlived their utility. We have considered what the direction of change should be. We have in the last four days thought over the integrated from of Humanism. On the basis we shall be able to reconcile nationalism, democracy, socialism and world peace with the traditional values of Bharatiya Culture and think of all these ideals in an integrated form. The mutual conflict among these ideals can be removed and they can supplement mutually. Thereby the “Man can gain his lost status and attain the aims of his life”.
We have here discussed the philosophy. But the members of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh are not mere philosophers or academicians. We have set out with the determination to make this nation strong, happy and prosperous through the medium of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh. Therefore, we must carry on practical programs for the nationalist reconstruction on this foundation. We have taken due note of our ancient culture. But we are no archeologists. We have to intention of becoming the custodians of a vast archeological museum. Our goal is not merely to protect the culture but to revitalize it so as to make it dynamic and in tune with the times. We must ensure that our nation stands firm on this foundation and our society is enabled to live a healthy, progressive and purposeful life. We shall have to end a number of traditions and set in reforms which are helpful in the development of values and of national unity in our society. We shall remove those traditions which obstruct this process. Whereas one need not mourn the limitations of the human body, one must undergo the required social operation if any part of the body has cancerous growth. There is no need to to amputee healthy limbs. If today, the society is gripped with evils like untouchability which lead men to treat other human beings as lower than themselves and thereby threaten the national unity, we shall have to end s such evils.
We shall be required to produce such institutions as will kindle the spirit of action in us, which will replace the self-centeredness and selfishness by a desire to serve the nation, which will produce not only sympathy towards our brethren, but a sense of affection and oneness with them. Such institutions can truly reflect our ‘Chiti’. ‘Chiti’ is a nation’s soul. The strength and energy activating the nation is called “Virat” and channeled by ‘Chiti’. The place of ‘Virat” in the life of nation is similar to that of Prana in the body. Just as ‘Prana’ infuses strength in various organs of the body, refreshed the intellect and keeps body and soul together; so also in a nation, with a strong ‘Virat’ alone can democracy succeed and the government be effective. Then the diversity of our nation does not prove an obstacle to our national unity. The difference of languages, occupations, etc. are present everywhere. However, when the ‘Virat’ is awake, diversity does not lead to conflicts and people co-operates with each other like the various limbs of the human body or like the members of a family.
We have to undertake the task of awakening our nation’s ‘Virat’. Let us go forward in this task with a sense of pride for our heritage, with a realistic assessment of the present and a great ambition for the future. We wish neither to make this country a shadow of some distant past nor an imitation of Russia or America. With the support of Universal knowledge and our heritage, we shall create a Bharat which will excel all its past glories, and will enable every citizen in its fold to steadily progress in the development of his manifold latent possibilities and to achieve through a sense of unity with the entire creation, a state even higher than that of a complete human being; to become Narayan from ‘Nar’. This is the external divine from of our culture. This is our message to humanity to cross roads. May God give us strength to succeed in this task.
BHARAT MATA KI JAI
25th April 1965
Lecture #1: https://arisebharat.wordpress.com/?p=5281
Lecture #2: https://arisebharat.wordpress.com/?p=5290
Lecture #3: https://arisebharat.wordpress.com/?p=5294