Published On: Sat, Aug 27th, 2016

Sangh agenda: For VHP it’s mission Hinduism 2017 – Times of India

AGRA: As the date for UP polls near, RSS’s Hindutava agenda for the elections is becoming clearer, as of its major affiliates, the VHP is all set to start “Mission Hinduism” in the state to “unite” people of all castes, particularly the dalits, in the name of religion.According to VHP sources, Hindu protagonist from the organization would be tasked to cover all the 15,000 odd bastis in UP, which comprises of OBCs and SCs and have a population of 5,000 and more, to form “Hindutava committees” to prop local hindu leaders and unite them under the “umbrella” of religion. And the message would be clear that only “dharma” can provide national security and make it safe too.

Incidentally this campaign, which is to start within a week, has been announced two days after the RSS supremo, Mohan Bhagwat, meet the representatives of the Sangh’s affiliates, including the VHP, the Bajrang Dal and the BJP, from Braj and Meerut regions in Agra. Bhagwat had in fact also stated publicly that “jab tak dharam hai, tab tak koi bhi aapka bal bakanka nahi kar sakta (till there is religion no one can harm you).”

Confirming the move, Sunil Parashar, vice-president of VHP, Braj region, said, “Kushwahas, brahmans, chhatriyas, yadavs, prajapatis and others may be divided by castes but they are all Hindus and we would attempt to get them together under the Hindu umbrella.” He said while other political parties, including the Congress, SP and the BSP, were trying to derive political mileage by dividing these castes and propping one against the other, the VHP is going to unite them on their common Hindu religion and beliefs.

He said as per plans, 11-member committees would be formed in each of the 15,000 bastis and these would comprise of people from all castes. He said the person from the caste that has a majority in a particular basti would be appointed as the president of the committee and other positions would be filled by people from other castes, as per their concentration.

Another VHP leader said on condition of anonymity that the purpose of this exercise is to convey that only religion unites us and the united we are, the safer it is for all of us. He said for the VHP they are all Hindus and their castes, upper or lower, do not matter.

Parashar said the mission would start in a week and all the 98 bastis in the Taj city would be targeted.

Meanwhile political observers view this development, as significant and fear that in the days to come the “religious rhetoric” would become shriller to polarize Hindus in the state. They say that the RSS seems to have devised this strategy to get OBCs and SCs in their fold in the name of religion, as there other overtures to the community have failed. “Religion, which has the power to divide, also has the potential to unite and polarize people,” they say.

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