LUCKNOW: In what is being seen as softening of it’s earlier stand, Rashtriya Swayemsewak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat sent out a clear message for sangh pariwar members saying that chanting of ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ cannot be forced upon the people. It has to be done voluntarily, Bhagwat said.
Coincidentally on Monday when the RSS chief made these statements, AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi, the man who had earlier challenged Bhagwat over his statement and had said that he would not chant ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ slogan even if a knife is put on his throat, was present in Lucknow.
Owaisi’s reaction then had come on a statement made by Bhagwat about two weeks back wherein he had said: “Now the time has come when we have to tell the new generation to chant `Bharat Mata Ki Jai (hail mother India),” Bhagwat had said. “It should be a real, spontaneous part of all-round development of the youth,” he had added.
However, on Monday speaking after inaugurating ‘Kisan bhawan’ at historic Smriti Bhawan, the RSS office where erstwhile Bharatiya Jansangh was set up in 1951, Bhagwat in what is being seen as softening of his earlier stand, said: “We don’t have to impose our ideology on others. We have to build ourselves in a manner that we build a Bharat where everyone chants ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai‘ voluntarily.”
The new ‘Kisan Bhawan’ had been named after Rajendra Singh aka ‘Rajju Bhaiyya’, who was the fourth sarsanghchalak (chief) of the RSS.
“All the people residing in the country are our own,” Bhagwat said and added that thus “we can’t force our ideology and thinking on them”.
India can show path to the world, the RSS chief said and added that Sangh’s aim is to make India the world leader and that can be achieved by imbibing values in the people in such a manner that people themselves chant ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’.
Bhagwat’s Monday statement is also sure to force the BJP leadership to rethink on its strategy which led by its chief Amit Shah had earlier said that there should not be any debate on chanting ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai.’ Interestingly, the BJP’s two day national executive on March 19 and 20th had even passed a resolution on ‘nationalism’ that stated: “Talking of destruction of Bharat can’t be supported in the name of freedom of expression.
Similarly refusal to hail Bharat – say ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ – in the name of freedom is also unacceptable. Our Constitution describes India as Bharat also; refusal to chant victory to Bharat ta?tamounts to disrespect to our Constitution itself. Bharat Mata ki Jai is not merely a slogan. It was a mantra of inspiration to countless freedom fighters during the Independence struggle. It is the heartbeat of a billion people today. It is the reiteration of our Constitutional obligation as citizens to uphold it’s primacy.The BJP wishes to make it clear that it will firmly oppose any attempt to disrespect Bharat and weaken its unity and integrity.”
Bhagwat exhorting the cadre to present top values in day to day life said that there should be a feeling of giving more than what one gets. “We should build our life in such a way that it becomes an ideal for others,” Bhagwat concluded. State BJP chief Laxmikant Bajpai, Mayor and national vice-president Dr Dinesh Sharma and many other BJP leaders were present when Bhagwat spoke.
Bhagwat would be in the city until Tuesday when he would dedicate newly built rooms at Madhav Ashram near SGPGI.