Veer Savarkar and the Two-Nation Theory

-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.

The context
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.

Savarkar’s defence
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’.

Jinnah’s inspiration

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)

Why Hindus Lag Behind In Kerala?

By Dr C I Issac,

 

A powerful field that can control society is Education.At present, the education sector in Kerala is under the control of minorities, these minorities  are politically influential and economically sound through the remittances made by

 

-(Non-Resident Keralites (NRKs).

 

While minorities run 3340 schools in the state, the entire Hindu jatis are in possession of just 194 schools. Muslim and Christian communities manage 223 arts and science colleges whereas all Hindu jatis together manage only 42 colleges

 

-(vide ‘Matrubhumi’ daily, September 28, 2002).

 

Out of the 433 professional colleges, only 86 are government-owned,  89 are Hindu-managed while 258 are managed by the minorities

 

-(G.K. Suresh Babu, ‘Kesari Annual, 2004).

 

Though all minorities are permitted to impart religious education in their institutions, this right is denied to Hindu institutions. Moreover, Hindu students in minority institutions are forced to study moral science, which infuse anti-Hindu sentiments in them. This is the best known Kerala model of secularist-democratic paradigm.

 

Why does it happen so?

 

No doubt, the reason is that Hindus are economically and politically a marginalized group in Kerala. If the lessons in history of ancient civilizations were destroyed by Semitic religions’ invasion, the situation is not very different for Hindus in Kerala. A major share of the state exchequer is spent on education. The last 48 years reveal that only one Hindu Minister handled the portfolio of education and that, too for a period of four years and three months.

 

Otherwise, for the rest of the period, this portfolio has been handled by Ministers belonging to only Minority communities. The minority Ministers, who managed the portfolio of education, helped only the minority community managements in an out-of the way manner. Lending a helping hand to minority institutions was similar for both, the Right and the Left coalitions. Both coalitions still follow minority appeasement as their de facto policy. This will result in an alarming situation.

 

Of the state’s 199,000 schoolteachers, the  Hindu share (inclusive of SCs/STs) is just 38 percent. According to the 1997 statistics, Kerala had 14200 college teachers of whom 76 percent belonged to minority communities (G. K. Suresh Babu).

 

All these statistics show of an unorganized, demographically ever-shrinking Hindu community of Kerala. In health care also, the minorities have an upper hand. The Hindu community owns just ten hospitals against 928 belonging to the minorities

 

– (‘Matrubhumi’).

 

Similarly, the Hindu share in the industry, agriculture and commerce is 28, 24 and 28 percent, respectively. At the same time, the Muslim share is 30, 23 and 40 percent and Christian share is 35, 40 and 36 percent, respectively (‘Matrubhumi’).  Like the Hindus of Kerala, no other community in the world is marginalized as much.

 

In several sectors, Hindus lag behind but In the case of suicides, hindus are leaders. Kerala’s suicidal rate is above the national average; it is 30.5 for every one lakh population. A recent NGO study reveals that 92 percent suicides were committed by Hindus. 6.5 percent by Christians and 1.5 percent by Muslims.

 

Insolvency is the main reason for the mass suicides in Kerala. The Kerala Government alloted new self-financing professional colleges which has come as a rude shock to the marginalized Hindus of Kerala. Due to the economic backwardness of the Hindus, it is difficult to compete with the minority communities for starting professional colleges. The result will be that those socially and economically backwards in the Hindu society will be kicked out of competition.

 

In medical education field alone, the Hindus will lose 250 seats every year. The Hindus coming in the purview of reservation will lose 3800 engineering seats and 100 MBBS seats every year.  After two decades, in the SC/ST section alone, there will be a shortage of 74000 engineers and 2000 doctors at the present rate. Education and economic progress are closely linked with Kerala life.

 

Therefore, any imbalance arising in the educational field will be reflected a hundred times in the economic scenario. In the near future, because of educational backwardness alone, Hindus will be forced to live on the periphery of society.

 

In the democratic process, votes are decisive factors. No doubt, the numerically ever-shrinking Hindus will lose relevance in the political structure of Kerala in the near future. Since Independence, for every decade, the Hindu population in Kerala has been falling at the rate of more than 1 percent.

 

If this trend continues, within three decades, Hindus will lose their majority statues in the state. At present, technically the Hindus are the majority community. But the minority religious groups have a clear sway over the political, economic and educational fields of Kerala.  It is no wonder that Hindus of Kerala, who are destined to be minority in the near future, will be thrown out of all fields of socio-economic activities.This will be a great tragedy for Hindus.

 

In 1947, Muslims in India were a minority community. They were 24 percent. But even that marginal strength of the Muslims led to the division of India.  Today, Nagaland and Mizoram have turned into Christian-majority states. In these states, discontent and insurgency, along with divisive tendencies, have surfaced. To a large section of the Christian brethren, the Hindus have become an indigestive element in the North-East.  If so, what will be the history of Kerala after three decades?

 

(By Dr C.I. Issac, Head of the PG Department of History, CMS College, Kottayam, Kerala.)

Statement of RSS Sarsanghchalak Dr. Mohanji Bhagwat after Ayodhya Verdict

The decision given by the Honourable Supreme Court is in line with the sentiments of the whole nation. Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh also joins the people of the whole nation in welcoming this verdict. The final judgement has come after legal processes spanning decades. In this process, all aspects relating to the Ram Janmabhoomi were thoroughly checked. Arguments placed by all parties reflecting their respective viewpoints were evaluated. We express our gratitude and congratulate the Honourable judges and lawyers of all sides who had carried on with this long churning patiently to bring out truth and justice. In this long-drawn effort, we remember all those supporters who had rendered their services in diverse ways and all martyrs with deep sense of gratitude.
We welcome and congratulate the people for accepting the judgement, and people in different levels of administration and society for maintaining order keeping alive brotherhood. The people of Bharat are also worthy of praise for waiting for the verdict peacefully for long with utmost patience.
The verdict should not be viewed from a ‘victory or defeat’ angle. The conclusion arrived through churning of truth and justice should be viewed and taken as a decision that will enhance the integrity and brotherhood of the entire Indian society. Forces which create discord among people and incite violence should not be patronised and kept away. One should express happiness with restraint, moderation and politeness completely avoiding any provocative or instigating action or deed and staying within the limits of the Constitution and law.
Taking forward the decision of the Hourable Supreme Court verdict, we hope that the government will initiate steps soon to end the controversy.
Let us forget all past controversies and work together to discharge our duty towards building a grand temple at Sri Ram Janmabhumi.
श्री रामजन्मभूमि के संबंध में मा. सर्वोच्च न्यायालय द्वारा इस देश की जनभावना, आस्था एवं श्रद्धा को न्याय देने वाले निर्णय का राष्ट्रीय स्वयंसेवक संघ स्वागत करता है। दशकों तक चली लंबी न्यायिक प्रक्रिया के बाद यह विधिसम्मत अंतिम निर्णय हुआ है। इस लंबी प्रक्रिया में श्री रामजन्मभूमि से संबंधित सभी पहलुओं का बारीकी से विचार हुआ है। सभी पक्षों के द्वारा अपने-अपने दृष्टिकोण से रखे हुए तर्कों का मूल्यांकन हुआ। धैर्यपूर्वक इस दीर्घ मंथन को चलाकर सत्य व न्याय को उजागर करने वाले सभी न्यायमूर्ति तथा सभी पक्षों के अधिवक्ताओं का हम शतशः धन्यवाद व अभिनंदन करते हैं। इस लम्बे प्रयास में अनेक प्रकार से योगदान देने वाले सभी सहयोगियों व बलिदानियों का हम कृतज्ञतापूर्वक स्मरण करते हैं।
निर्णय स्वीकार करने की मनःस्थिति, भाईचारा बनाये रखते हुए पूर्ण सुव्यवस्था बनाये रखने के लिये सरकारी व समाज के स्तर पर हुए सभी लोगों के प्रयास का भी स्वागत व अभिनंदन करते हैं। अत्यंत संयमपूर्वक न्याय की प्रतीक्षा करने वाली भारतीय जनता भी अभिनंदन की पात्र है।
इस निर्णय को जय-पराजय की दृष्टि से नहीं देखना चाहिये। सत्य व न्याय के मंथन से प्राप्त निष्कर्ष को भारत वर्ष के संपूर्ण समाज की एकात्मता व बंधुता के परिपोषण करने वाले निर्णय के रूप में देखना व उपयोग में लाना चाहिये। सम्पूर्ण देशवासियों से अनुरोध है कि विधि और संविधान की मर्यादा में रहकर संयमित व सात्विक रीति से अपने आनंद को व्यक्त करें।
इस विवाद के समापन की दिशा में सर्वोच्च न्यायालय के निर्णय के अनुरूप परस्पर विवाद को समाप्त करने वाली पहल सरकार की ओर से शीघ्रतापूर्वक होगी, ऐसा हमें विश्वास है।
अतीत की सभी बातों को भुलाकर हम सभी श्री रामजन्मभूमि पर भव्य मंदिर के निर्माण में साथ मिल-जुल कर अपने कर्तव्यों का निर्वाह करें।

ముస్లిములు తమ పూర్వీకులు చేసిన తప్పులను సరిదిద్దుకోవాలి : షియా వక్ఫ్ బోర్డ్ ఛైర్మన్

వివాదాస్పదమైన అన్ని స్థలాలలో ముస్లింలు తమ వాదనలను ఆపి, కూల్చివేసిన దేవాలయాలపై నిర్మించిన 11 మసీదులను హిందువులకు అప్పగించాలని ఉత్తర ప్రదేశ్, షియా వక్ఫ్ బోర్డు చైర్మన్ సయ్యద్ వసీమ్ రజ్వి అన్నారు.

ముస్లింలు మధుర, వారణాసి, జౌన్‌పూర్‌లతో సహా దేశవ్యాప్తంగా ఇలాంటి 11 వివాదాస్పద స్థలాల విషయంలో తమ వాదనను ఆపివేసి, తమ పూర్వీకుల తప్పులను సరిదిద్దుకోవడానికి ఆ స్థలాలను హిందువులకు అప్పగించాలని రిజ్వి విజ్ఞప్తి చేశారు. అయితే కూల్చివేసిన దేవాలయాలపై నిర్మించిన వివాదాస్పద నిర్మాణాలలో నమాజ్ చేయడానికి సున్నీ ముస్లింలు అనుమతి కోరిన నేపధ్యంలో ఆయన  ఈ విజ్ఞప్తి  చేశారని ఇండియన్ ఎక్స్ ప్రెస్ పత్రిక ప్రచురించింది.

ఇలాంటి  పరిష్కారమార్గాన్ని అనుసరించకపోతే  అయోధ్య వివాదం తేలిన తర్వాత కూడా ఇలాంటి మరిన్ని వివాదాలు తలెత్తే ప్రమాదం ఉంటుంది.  వివాదాస్పద నిర్మాణాలలో నమాజ్ చేయడానికి సున్నీలు అనుమతి కోరిన తరువాత అటువంటి విజ్ఞప్తి అవసరం” అని ఆయన  అన్నారు.

`మసీదులను నిర్మించడానికి మొఘలులు తీసుకున్న దేవాలయాల భూమిని తిరిగి ఇచ్చే సమయం ఆసన్నమైందని, దేవాలయాల స్థానంలో నిర్మించిన మసీదులను హిందువులకు అప్పగించాలని, పూర్వీకుల తప్పులను మనం సరిదిద్దుకుని దేశంలో శాంతిని నెలకొల్పాలి’ అని రిజ్వి చెప్పారు.

Source : vsktelangana.org

The Sangh Connection

By Arun Kumar

“THE ISSUE OF J&K HAS ENTERED THE PHASE WHERE THE TRUTH HAS TO BE ESTABLISHED BASED ON FACTS AND LOGIC. THE RSS HAS ACCEPTED EVEN THIS CHALLENGE OF THE INTELLECTUAL STRUGGLE AND A CONTINUOUS EFFORT IS ON TO BRING OUT THE TRUTH BEFORE THE PEOPLE THROUGH RESEARCH-BASED STUDIES.”

August 15, 1947.. The whole of Bharat was beaming with the joy of the Independence. The people in Jammu & Kashmir were also breathing in free air after the slavery of centuries. Even this Independence did not appear palatable to the people from a particular class who were inebriated in the communal frenzy. They thought that Kashmir was a Muslim majority state that had to be in Pakistan. They hoisted the Pakistani flags on the government buildings in Srinagar before the sunrise. The people’s reactions arose in hushed tones; but who would come forward? The RSS swayamsevaks came out for the Shakha with the sunrise and they heard this talk. There was a meeting after the Shakha and the swayamsevaks decided that the strong reply would be given. They came together near Amirakdal exactly at 10 am. Patriot citizens also joined them. Thousands of people ferried the roads of Srinagar chanting ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’. Within no time, the Pakistani flags were taken down from the government buildings. The Kashmir Valley had then and even now has a Muslim majority. Like today, a gang of nuisance makers existed at that time also who were few in number but had the capability to take the valley hostage. In spite of this, the courage that the citizens showed on August 15, 1947 along with the RSS swayamsevaks by resisting those nuisance makers had the background of a grand programme of the RSS that had started just a few months earlier. The people of Kashmir valley experienced the capability and the discipline of the RSS for the first time in that programme. The programme had taken place at DAV College, Srinagar in which more than one thousand swayamsevaks in their uniforms took part. In his address, the then RSS Sarsanghachalak Poojya Shri Madhavrao Golwalkarji aka Shri Guruji explained the necessity of the unity of the Hindus and appealed to be alert towards the anti-national activities and foil their ploys with the help of united force. This initiative by the swayamsevaks filled the minority but nationalist community, which was affected by an inferiority complex, with enthusiasm. The confidence that arose through it played an important role to face off the Pakistani aggression in coming days.

Stormy Days

Those were stormy days. The prominent RSS workers in Jammu & Kashmir could hear the sound of coming tragedy and were working on a war footing, with their all might, to avoid it. In this regard, some prominent swayamsevaks had even penetrated among the pro-Pakistani conspirators in the areas that are today in the Pak-occupied area as well as in Srinagar because of which they received confirmed reports of the conspiracies being hatched in Karachi and Rawalpindi. On the one hand, the swayamsevaks were gathering information by staking their lives and on the other hand, the work of uniting the youths was on constantly through the Shakhas. The reports coming from the border areas was worrisome and the swayamsevaks were determined that they would try everything to save Jammu & Kashmir from the Pakistani conspiracy. When the plan of attack on October 22 was prepared on October 13, 1947, in the presence of Mohammad Ali Jinnah, a swayamsevak was present there in disguise. The RSS headquarters at Srinagar had received this information by night which was conveyed in time to Brigadier Rajendra Singh and Brigadier Fakir Singh. Likewise, the swayamsevaks were the first to receive the information of the Pakistani conspiracy to abduct Maharaja Hari Singh during his tour of Bhimber. The then Sanghachalak of Jammu Pt. Premanth Dogra alerted Maharaja in time because of which the latter changed his programme. The attack on Bhimber failed and Maharaja’s life could be saved.

On the Path of Duty

Brig. Rajendra Singh was martyred while combating the Pakistani attackers in Uri. In that difficult situation, Maharaja Hari Singh himself called Shri Balraj Madhok, who handled the entire expedition on RSS behalf, to his Palace. Prime Minister Mehar Chand Mahajan said clearly, “We want youths from you who can go to Baramulla tomorrow itself and help the military in stopping the enemy from entering Kashmir valley.” Shri Madhok said, “The hearts of our youths are full of spirit, enthusiasm, they are ready to shed their lives for the nation, but they are not soldiers. They have neither arms nor the training to use them. In such a situation, how helpful can they be?” Brig. Fakir Singh said instantly, “The RSS swayamsevaks are patriots and educated. We will train them and make them soldiers within a day.” “So, how many swayamsevaks do you want?” “150, tomorrow at 7 am.” It was 12 am. The Mukhya Shikshaks of Rainawadi, Parana City and Amirakdal were awakened from the sleep and given the responsibility of informing their swayamsevaks by 3 am to gather in the RSS office at 6 am with the preparedness of going to the war zone. The smaller groups of swayamsevaks started coming to the RSS office from the 5 am itself. By 7 am, more than 200 swayamsevaks had gathered of which 150 swayamsevaks were selected. Those who were rejected had tearful eyes. After an inspiring address by Shri Madhok, there was Sangh prayer and the swayamsevak left in the trucks towards the camp at Badami Bagh.

Ready for your cause…

The whole of Kashmir was expecting the Bharatiya army to reach any moment. However, wider airstrips were needed for the landing of the military planes and they were not there. The swayamsevaks finished the challenging task of constructing airstrips at three places – Srinagar, Jammu and Poonch by toiling day and night.

On the Path of Sacrifice

The first aeroplane of the Indian Air Force landed in Srinagar on October 27, 1947. Within next ten days, the Bharatiya Army captured all the area up to Uri. When the Pakistanis had to retreat from Kashmir, they increased their pressure on Jammu. Both Bhimber and Meerpur had fallen into Pakistan’s hands. More than 50,000 citizens were killed mercilessly. It is impossible to describe what happened to thousands of mothers and sisters. The grip was tightening around Kotli. The possibility of getting military help was dim. An IAF aeroplane threw eight boxes of ammunition but it also fell into the enemy-controlled territory. It was neither possible to bring it back from among the enemy nor fighting without it. The RSS swayamsevaks came forward to turn the impossible to possible. Kotli’s Nagar Karyavah Chandra Prakash took seven swayamsevaks beside him and reached to the box of ammunition scrawling. A nullah in the way was to be crossed swimming. The sounds emanating from the water alerted the enemy. They were inching forward and pushing the box amidst the showering of bullets. All of a sudden, bullets hit Chandra Prakashji and Ved Prakashji, but they had no time to look after them. The other swayamsevaks took their boxes and went ahead. They returned after successfully handing over the ammunition to the soldiers. Both the swayamsevaks passed away. They had to carry their dead bodies on their back and scrawl upwards on the hill. The showering of the bullets was becoming intense. Two more swayamsevaks were hit by the bullets and remaining two colleagues lifted them on their back. All four swayamsevaks were cremated on the same pyre on the outskirts of the Kotli town. They lived up to their vow. The soldiers had enough ammunition now that they took with them and started marching ahead on the same road from where it was brought. The Pakistani guns were rendered silent with the sunrise. The tricolour was flying high on the hill ahead. This Body fells for You, Salute Salute! Kotli was now in full control of the Bharatiya Army. A report came abruptly that the aggressors had surrounded 1200 Hindus in Palandhari, 20 kms away from there. Kotli could not be left unsecured, hence soldiers in large number could not be sent there. It was determined that three soldiers, 15 jawans of Jammu & Kashmir Police and 100 swayamsevaks would go to Palandhari for this mission. The enemy got the information of this mission in advance because of a traitor officer and they were all prepared for this. The entire unit fought till their last breath; none of them returned alive.

Service Work

The second stage of the RSS work started after creating a successful history of sacrifices. The challenge lay ahead after the ceasefire came into being of looking after those who had come as the migrants and displaced, after losing everything and near and dear ones, in Jammu and its vicinity. Sheikh Abdullah did not allow even the state’s own people to stay in Kashmir and pushed them towards Jammu. It is a travesty that Jammu has remained a land of these displaced people even today. RSS asked help from the society for the urgent necessities of these people and started working on priority issues like their food, shelter, security and medical help. The swayamsevaks yoked themselves to the service of these migrants and displaced, without thinking about themselves, as they stood firm like a wall before the enemy during the time of Pakistan’s aggression.

Praja Parishad and its Agitation

Disturbed by the Pakistani atrocities against his subjects, Maharaja Hari Singh even accepted the illogical demand of handing over the power to Sheikh Abdullah and signed on the letter of annexation. Immediately after assuming charge, Sheikh started dealing with a stern hand with his political opponents. People of Jammu were considered to be the supporters of Maharaja and they were attacked as well. This situation forced the people of Jammu to form their own political party. Jammu Praja Parishad was formed by projecting Shri Premnath Dogra, a consensus personality who was once the Deputy Commissioner of Muzaffarabad. Its president and minister, Hari Wazir and Hansraj Sharma respectively, were young but its functioning and organisation were backed by the belligerent leadership of Shri Balraj Madhok. The Praja Parishad spread its wing all over the state in no time. Praja Parishad took many efforts to resolve the problem. Its leadership put forward the actual position before Sheikh Abdullah in the state and Sardar Patel and Prime Minister Pt. Nehru in Delhi. Infuriated with this, Sheikh expelled Shri Madhok, his parents and his family from Jammu and put Pt. Premanth Dogra in jail. The opposition was growing and Sheikh’s brutality also. On his instance, the administration was inflicting free-willed atrocities against Praja Parishad workers and supporters. The developments like Delhi Accord happening under Sheikh Abdullah’s pressure, announcement of the Sadr-i-Riyasat after changing the President-approved head of the state etc. created an atmosphere of uncertainty and distrust in the state. As a result, the Praja Parishad was forced to move towards a decisive agitation.

Heat of the Agitation in Delhi

The agitation was at its peak in Jammu. The agitators were facing canes and bullets every day. Processions supporting the agitation started in Delhi too and a series of protests went on. The police caned the agitators brutally in Hauz Qazi in which 60 persons were injured. The teargas shells were also thrown. This instigated the protests even more. The annual meeting of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh was on at the time in Kanpur. The Jana Sangh announced an eight-member fact-finding team to be sent to Jammu but the Bharatiya government did not allow it to go there. Jana Sangh, Hindu Mahasabha and Ramrajya Parishad announced their decision to observe March 5 jointly as the Jammu Day. Section 144 was imposed at all major places in Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. A big rally was organised in the ground in front of Delhi Station that was presided by Karpatri Maharaj. Jana Sangh’s president Dr. Syama Prasad Mookerjee addressed the rally. The police arrested Dr. Syama Prasad Mookerjee, Barrister Nirmalchandra Chaterjee, Nandlal Sharma and Vaidya Gurudutt in the midst of the crowd. A satyagrah was announced in Delhi and Pathankot against the arrest of Dr. Mookerjee and police atrocities. Praja Parishad is credited with providing a platform for the citizens in Jammu & Kashmir, who wanted to associate their identity with Bharat. The agitation of the nationalist forces under its leadership foiled the British conspiracy to break Kashmir away from Bharat and the ploys of Sheikh Abdullah to become Kashmir’s sultan. It was also successful in attracting the nation’s attention on this point and create a strong public opinion.

Dr. Syama Prasad Mookerjee’s Martyrdom

When the people of Jammu were struggling for their survival under the leadership of Praja Parishad, the national leader and Jana Sangh president Dr. Syama Prasad Mookerjee, who was former Industries Minister in Nehru cabinet, went to Jammu with three other MPs namely Shri V.G. Deshpande, Shri Ram Narayan Singh and Barrister Uma Shankar Trivedi in August 1952. Dr. Mookerjee gave a strong boost to the agitation, which was on with the slogan ‘one law, one ruler and one flag’. Addressing a rally during this time, he announced, “Either I will obtain the law or sacrifice myself.” A unanimous resolution in this regard was passed in the first session of Jana Sangh at Kanpur in December 1952 under which it was decided to extend full support to the Praja Parishad’s agitation and make it nationwide. It was also proposed to get cooperation from other nationalist organisations. There was no restraint to Sheikh’s tyranny in Jammu while Pt. Nehru was adamant in Delhi that he would trample the agitation with canes and bullets. Not only the opposition leaders and parties, even ruling party members could do little more than watching on helplessly. Satyagrah in March and April rocked Delhi. The satyagrahis were coming from all over the country and getting arrested themselves. They were mistreated not only on the road but in jail also. The trampling by the government was in full swing. On this background, Dr. Syama Prasad Mookerjee announced as the last measure on May 7, “I will go to Jammu tomorrow”. It is notable here that when the agitation in Delhi was in full swing, two other members of Lok Sabha Barrister U.M. Trivedi and Hindu Mahasabha’s general secretary Vishnu Ghanshyam Deshpande had announced their visit to Jammu. They were arrested in Jalandhar on April 17. However, the Supreme Court acquitted and released them. The Bharatiya government learned from this that if he were arrested within the SC’s jurisdiction, he would also be released. Thus, Nehru and Sheikh’s plans would not bear fruit. Until then, Jammu and Kashmir was not in the jurisdiction of the SC of Bharat. Hence, he was arrested in Jammu & Kashmir’s borders. According to former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, who accompanied Dr. Mookrjee then as a journalist, the Deputy Commissioner of Gurudaspur himself came to him and said they would arrange everything for his visit. He said they did not want to stop him. There would be no hurdle in his travel because of him. They were ready to make his travel comfortable. However, as they reached halfway on the Madhopur Bridge, the Jammu & Kashmir police arrested him. The government did not allow Barrister Uma Shankar Trivedi, who had gone to file a petition in the Jammu & Kashmir High Court against the arrest, to meet him. He could meet Dr. Mookerjee only when the Jammu & Kashmir HC allowed him to do so. The verdict on Barrister Trivedi’s petition was scheduled on June 23. Everyone expected that Dr. Mookerjee would be released on this day. However, he died in suspicious conditions just on the eve of that day. His colleagues arrested with him were released. Dr. Mookerjee’s sacrifice bore fruit and the permit system was abolished. Many provisions of the Bharat’s constitution were enforced in the state.

A Silent Penance

For the next three decades, the central government carried out political experiments in Jammu & Kashmir. Through these experiments, Congress maintained its place in the state’s politics by overlooking the anti-Bharat activities and sometimes even by protecting them. As Pakistan changed its strategy after the defeat in Bangladesh, the separatists also changed their tunes. Sheikh Abdullah even started saying that Jammu & Kashmir’s annexation to Bharat was final. Impressed by this, Sheikh was again made the Chief Minister. For RSS, this was the period of silent penance. It knew that the direction in which the political ambitions were taking the state were not in people’s interests. Hence, a new age of struggle was inevitable to come and all nationalist forces had to unite in it. The RSS’ doubts proved true soon and the role of ever-ready force of RSS proved effective.

Against the Terrorism

Pakistan indulged in its strategy of inflicting thousand cuts on Bharat. The separatists living in the valley became its agents. The mainstream political parties closed their eyes towards them. The Ram Janmabhoomi agitation was instrumental in flaring up the communal sentiments in Kashmir. Rumour was spread in Kashmir that homicide of Muslims was going on while Jammu was all-calm. The naked dance of violence was started in Kashmir on this pretence. By 1989, the administration became totally helpless before the terrorists. Announcements of Nizam-e-Mustafa were being made from the mosques. Hindus were told to leave the valley. The terrorists killed prominent personalities like BJP vice president Shri Tikalal Tapalu, RSS senior member Shri Premnath Bhatt, Justice Neelkanth Ganju who pronounced the death sentence on Makbul Bhatt, Doordarshan’s director Lasa Kaul, etc. In this background, all religious and social organisations in Jammu & Kashmir were called together on the instance of RSS and Jammu Kashmir Sahayata Samiti was formed. The Samiti worked for the registration and rehabilitating the displaced on safer places. The swayamsevaks all over the country went from home to home, collected food, money, clothes and medicines on the appeal of the Samiti, and distributed them to the displaced.

Kashmir March

Giving the first-hand experience to the people of the country was necessary so that they get an idea of the severity of the situation. More than 11 thousand boy and girl students from the country reached Jammu on the appeal of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad and witnessed the reality. The ABVP had announced hoisting of tricolour in the Lal Chowk of Srinagar but the administration, which failed to stop the insult to the tricolour, stopped these nationalist youths from marching ahead. These youths, arrested with the tricolour, were placed in the jail at Udhampur for one day and released. From there, these students went to Delhi, sat before the residence of the then Prime Minister Vishwanath Pratap Singh, and handed over the tricolour with a challenge to hoist it in Lal Chowk.

Jammu-Kashmir Bachao Abhiyan

The women’s nationalist organisation Rashtra Sevika Samiti organised nationwide Jammu-Kashmir Bachao Abhiyan from March 29 to 31, 1991 for creating awareness. An attempt was made to draw the nation’s attention towards the situation in J&K through a grand awareness yatra and a public rally in Jammu on March 31. Thereafter, these sisters went to the displaced camps and witnessed the ground situation.

Ekata Yatra

The Bharatiya Janata Party announced the Ekata Yatra to convey the state’s situation to every citizen. This Rathyatra started from Kanyakumari under the leadership of BJP’s then national president Dr. Murali Manohar Joshi on December 11, 1991. Resonating the chants of Bharat Mata Ki Jai in every village and town, this Yatra reached Srinagar on January 26, 1992 after crossing all hurdles where the tricolour was hoisted as announced in advance. More than 50,000 patriotic people reached Jammu to witness this moment but they could not reach Srinagar because of the road blockage. Finally, about 40 persons were taken to Srinagar by aeroplane. The terrorists’ threats proved useless and the nation’s pride emerged victoriously.

Towards Total Integration

This phase of terror was testing for the nationalist forces. Today, terrorism and separatism are fighting the last battle for its survival. The nationalist forces have emerged triumphant through this. There was a time when most of the people and even government thought that the Kashmir was slipping out of hand. Some opined that the state should be trifurcated and at least Jammu and Ladakh should be secured. Many advocated making the Line of Control the international border. The nationalist forces in Jammu & Kashmir have rejected all this negativity and proved their strength by their perseverance. The question today is how to regain the Bharatiya territory across the LoC. How to allay the confusion on the issue of Jammu & Kashmir that was created due to international diplomacy? How to end the falsehood that was established through the silence of the central government for six decades and bring the truth before the people? The issue of Jammu Kashmir has entered a new phase where the truth has to be established based on facts and logic. The RSS has accepted even this challenge of the intellectual struggle and a continuous effort is on to bring out the truth before the people through research-based studies in a phased and scientific manner. The way the issue of Jammu Kashmir has assumed centrality during last few years itself proves the relevance of these efforts.

(Sri Arun Kumar ji is Former Prant Pracharak of Jammu & Kashmir and presently Akhil Bharatiya Prachar Pramukh of RSS )

Source: Organiser