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Blaming Sangh 'obsession' with left historians: RSS ideologue
Blaming Sangh 'obsession' with left historians: RSS ideologue

Press Trust of India
The Observer Of Business And Politics
February 28, 2000

Title: Blaming Sangh 'obsession' with left historians: RSS ideologue
Author: Press Trust of India
Publication: The Observer Of Business And Politics
Date: February 28, 2000

Blaming the Sangh parivar for the decision of the Indian Council of Historical Research (ICHR) to recall and review two volumes of Towards Freedom was a 'ruse' on the part of the Leftist historians to cover up their prejudices and failures, RSS ideologue and director of 'Bharatiya Vichara Kendram' P Parameswaran said here on Sunday.

"This has become an obsession with them. They see a ghost in every bush. Anything that happens they see the hand of the Sang Parivar in it," Parameswaran said in an interview here.

"It is unfortunate that the Sangh's name is drawn into the controversy. It seems the only way for them to gain some credibility," Parameswaran, who was recently nominated to the the court of Jawaharlal Nehru University, said reacting to the charge that two volumes of the Towards Freedom, edited by Prof. K N Panikkar and Prof. Sumit Sarkar, were recalled by the ICHR from the publisher following pressure from the Sangh Parivar.

"The book has not been withdrawn. It was being recalled by the ICHR for a review by a panel of eminent historians. Why do they pre-judge? They have got a case if the book was withdrawn," Parameswaran said.

"The Parivar has got to do plenty of its own work. The ICHR and the HRD ministry are capable of doing their job," Parameswaran said. Holding that there was nothing wrong in having a re-look at the volumes, he said bringing out the truth was not only in the interest of ICHR, but also in the interest of history itself.

Even if the book was withdrawn they (the editors) were free to get their work published. "Nobody could stop them from publishing their work," he said when asked about the charge of Prof. Panikkar that the present leaders of the country were 'afraid of history.'

"In the past a similar work by Prof. R C Majumdar was withdrawn. Instead of going hammer and tongs at others, Majumdar got it published on his own," he said.

On the charge that the Sangh Parivar was afraid of getting the "collaborationist role" of the Hindu Mahasabha and RSS in the freedom struggle, Parameswaran shot back "what about their (communists') collaborationist role?" "The worst they can say about the RSS is that it did not participate in the freedom struggle. But the communists did betray the freedom struggle.

Maybe it is a too well known fact," he said. "If the rss did not directly participate in the freedom struggle that was because it was a social and cultural movement. The role of the RSS was to organise the Hindu society. They can put the same charge on the Sree Ramakrishna Mission also alleging that it did not participate in the freedom struggle," Parameswaran said.

Charging its adversaries with drawing on selective sources and quoting out of context to criticise the RSS, he said the Sangh's critics often quoted from M S Golwalkar's work We, our nation hood defined.

This was a work published in the late '30s when Guruji (Golwalakar) was not the head of the Sangh. After he became the head of the Sangh the book was not used or re-published.

The Leftist historians have been quoting the book arguing that this was the ideological basis of the RSS, he said. The 'bunch of thought', a compilation of Golwalkar's speeches and writings, could be considered as ideological basis of the RSS. But they could find nothing objectionable in it, he held. Confirming that he accepted his nomination to the JNU court, Parameswaran said "it is good to be on such a body."

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