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True Hindutva - times of India

2 July 1996

What Shri Sinha has not identified is who is propagating this
true Hindutva, so that the reader is in a position to know
whom to support. So far it is only the RSS that claims to
follow Hindutva, and unless the psecularists come out with
an alternative organisation, confusion is bound to prevail!

Title : True Hindutva
Publication : times of India
Date : July 2, 1996

HINDUTVA is not the name of what is commonly, and rather
loosely, referred to as the Hindu religion. The word
'Hindu' itself was first used in the 16th century by non-
Indians indicating people inhabiting the land beyond the
great river Indus. The term 'Hindu' gained currency land
wide acceptance during our interface with the western
world which found it a convenient expression.

Hindutva today is being used with the objective of
emphasising commonality in the seemingly diverse aspects
of the Indian way of life. Significantly, the word Hindu
itself was used, before it got theologically polluted
through prolonged usage, as a synonym for "Indian"; and
adding "Indianness," nothing more and
nothing less. The whole idea of it increased use is
to instil a sense of national pride among Indians and no
one can quarrel with that. Hindutva does not create any
divides between those professing different faiths but
seeks to unify them all, stressing what is common to all
Indians. It does not imply propagation or rejection of a
particular form of worship. The perceived theological
connotations are purely imaginary since this country has
been the cradle of many great world religions since
times immemorial.

Hindutva is what an average Indian, irrespective of his
socio-cultural-economic moorings, unconsciously shares
with all his countrymen. Hindutva has no place for
bigotry of any kind, as the very concept is more European
and semitic than Indian. Tolerance has been the hall-mark
of Indian society all through history and that is what
distinguishes us from the rest of the world. Even during
a period of the worst kind of fanatical persecution,
Shivaji fought Aurangzeb on purely socioeconomic and
political grounds and his fight was without the least
trace of malice or vindictiveness or any other con-
sideration of race, religion or creed. During Shivaji's
rule, no one was persecuted or favoured on the basis of
his faith. In fact, many of his most trusted lieutenants
and personal con-fidantes were Muslims. He told Aurangzeb
in a famous letter, "Islam and Hinduism are both
beautiful manifestations of the Divine Spirit. The call
for prayers is given in the mosques, the bells ring to
the divine glory in the temples. Any one bearing
fanaticism and religious hatred must be said to be acting
against the commands of God".

That, doubtless, is true Hindutva.

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