RSS ideologue plays  down saffron split

M G Vaidya says RSS won’t intervene to reunite the warring Sena-BJP 

Mumbai : Senior Hindutva ideologue M G Vaidya, who had earlier said that “it is painful to see BJP-Shiv Sena breaking ties”, made it clear on Thursday that the RSS won’t intervene to reunite the BJP and the Shiv Sena.

“RSS works for the larger goal that is Hindutva. Alliance of certain political parties has hardly any significance in their scheme of operations,” Vaidya told FPJ, when asked whether the RSS would intervene to bring BJP and Shiv Sena together to avoid division of Hindutva forces.

“One or two small ups and downs in state elections can’t be termed as the defeat of the ideology,” he said, when asked to comment on whether it would be a defeat for RSS in not being able to keep the Hindutva parties together and not able to ensure enough numbers for them to form government.

Now that the exit polls have made it clear that the BJP would be the largest party in Maharashtra and the Shiv Sena might be their principal opponent, people who identify themselves with Hindutva are asking whether the RSS, would intervene to keep the Hindutva forces together.

When asked to comment on this, Vaidya said, “RSS works in various walks of life. Politics is one of such fields where RSS members work. RSS does not interfere with their day-to-day functioning. So, they have no business to do with BJP-Sena break-up. That is a very small and temporary issue. RSS has no role, neither will it advise any party over such political issues.”

“Regionalism has no place in the Hindutva ideology that RSS professes,” he said when asked whether he believes in Sena’s version of Hindutva. “Anybody who tries to divide Hindus on the basis of region or language is not practising Hindutva,” he said.

“When I’d earlier said that it is not good to break the ties, it was from the perspective of a former political worker. But, I might be proved wrong this Sunday, when the assembly poll results will be declared,” he said.

Another senior journalist from Nagpur who is close to the top RSS circles said, “RSS never believed Sena to be walking the Hindutva path.”

“Sena’s Hindutva is based on  politics and it is negative one. Contrary to that what RSS professes is very positive and very inclusive,” he added.

But, there is a large chunk of voters who have been voting for Shiv Sena, but are loyal to the RSS also. These are the voters who have been most disappointed with the BJP-Sena break up and the consequent projections where BJP may have an upper hand. “I’ve always voted for Sena because they were the saviours during 1992 riots,” says a medical professor from Navi

Mumbai whose family members represent various organisations in the RSS parivar.

Sharadmani Marathe, who was at the receiving end of the bloody clashes between student wings of RSS and Sena in 1994, explains the dilemma. “Hinduva loyalist Marathi voters between the age group of 18 to 50 have hardly voted for BJP and Sena separately since they got the right to vote. This has created an illusion and there are many who found vibrancy of Sena Hindutva and the ‘Sons of Soil’ ideology interesting. That is nothing but confusion and it should go away once both the parties start going on their own path,” he says.

He also says that, though both Sena and BJP leaders always talked of Hindutva based alliance, many in RSS fold were always sure that it for merely for the sake of convenience.

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