After sixty years of freedom, Indian democracy seems to be falling apart.
The BJP was once a cadre based party, having the RSS as their friend, philosopher and guide. At that time even a cycle repairer (e.g. Bodh Raj of south Delhi) could become a member of the DMC. But in due course of time the protection provided by the RSS proved to be counter-productive. The BJP has failed to evolve as a disciplined democratic party.
Ideology is the soul of motivation. But unfortunately it has been sacrificed at the altar of expediency.
(i) Pt Deendayal Upadhyaya’s “Integral Humanism” is nothing but, the all inclusive, Hindu Joint Family concept extended gradually to the ‘mohalla’, the village, the country and the world. In short it is an elaboration of the Hindu mantra “Sarve Santu Sukhinah …etc.” However this thesis was never read by the party leaders, nor adopted as their source of ideology at any time.
It should be remembered that initially the party had fought elections in alliance with the Hindu Maha Sabha and the Ram Rajya Parishad, all supported by the RSS. And of course the Shiv Sena is still their “natural ally”.
The vital contributions of the Sangh Parivar neglected:
(i) Both the ‘Cow Protection Movement’ (of the sixties), and the Ram Mandir agitation (of the nineties) provided widespread inspiration for spreading the Hindutva ideology.
(ii) Economic Agenda: An indigenous economic agenda, different from the imported ideologies of Communism and Capitalism, was provided by the Bhartiya Mazdoor Sangh, the Bhartiya Kisan Sangh, the Swadeshi Jagran Manch and the Laghu Udyog Bharati, (all parts of the Sangh Parivar).
(iii) Village development models
Devoted works of Nanaji Deshmukh and others created model villages for the BJP to follow.
(iv) Expansion of the base
The Sewa Bharati, the Vidya Bharati and the Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram expanded the base of the BJP to unprecedentedly vast areas in the interiors of the country.
(v) Ready-made recruiting ground
The Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad gave a fertile recruiting ground for the BJP cadres.
(vi) The RSS “Reach all” mass movements
Bharat Mata Ekatmta Darshan, Dr Hedgewar Centenary Celebrations and the Ram Mandir were mass movements. They reached most of the villages of India, and vastly enlarged the ideological base for the BJP.
But the BJP, instead of acknowledging the debt of the Sangh Parivar, remained adamant in their short lived glory.
Organisational work neglected:
The BJP can be compared with the Indian police. In the Indian Police a commissioned officer may reach the top positions. But the havaldar will always remain a poor havaldar. He will never be consulted for advice on issues of importance. There is no chance, whatsoever, of rising to the top echelons.
These havaldars may be compared with the ordinary workers of the Parivar.
The lucky others who, by using suitable tactics, have been promoted to the commissioned ranks, are perpetually standing in a queue of hierarchy. The most senior of them may, if the “High Command” agrees, enter the Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha and may become ministers, if the party comes to power. But under the present conditions it remains a big ‘if’.
But one thing is quite sure that the common workers, howsoever senior or deserving they might be, in terms of intelligence, hard work or sacrifice, will never enter the portals of power. They shall ever remain ‘havaldars’.
(The writer can be contacted at KG1/265, Vikas Puri, New Delhi-18.)