Vijayadashmi celebration in Nagpur
Celebrated Hindi writer Dr Narendra Kohli said: Don't get distracted by meaningless talks on violence and non-violence
From Virag Pachpore in Nagpur
Touching some of the very important national issues like terrorism, corruption and nationalism noted writer, novelist and thinker Dr Narendra Kohli called upon the people not to get misled by talks of violence and non-violence.
Addressing the Vijayadashmi Mahotsav organised by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) to mark its 87th foundation day at the historic Reshambagh Grounds in Nagpur on October 6, Dr Kohli stated that because of misleading notions about non-violence India was facing innumerable problems like naxalite violence, cross-border terrorism, intrusions in Indian territory by neighbouring countries and unabated infiltration from across the border.
“We need to understand what violence is and what non-violence is and act accordingly to resolve these problems confronting our nation today,” he stated giving examples from Mahabharata and the conference he had attended at Oslo in Norway some days ago. In that conference some of the scholars had raised doubts over Lord Krishna advising Arjuna to be ready for the war through his divine song Geeta. The scholar asked, “Geeta preaches violence while Gandhiji preaches non-violence, then who is great? Geeta or Gandhiji?”
Dr Kohli’s response was that Gandhiji used to search for solutions to life’s problems in Geeta. He was ardent follower of the principle of non-violence. But for him Geeta was not just a book of religious importance; he used to revere it as ‘Geeta Mata’—the Mother Geeta. “Therefore, there is no inherent contradiction in Geeta and Gandhiji. Similarly, Gandhiji worshipped Sri Rama who held his bow in ever ready position. But there is any such contradiction between Gandhi and Sri Rama, Who eliminated all the evil tendencies including the mighty Ravana to establish the rule of dharma and righteousness on the earth. In fact, Sri Rama had taken a vow to demolish all the demons on the earth—nisichar heena karahun mahi… And Gandhiji breathed his last by uttering words Hey Ram. So, there was a mistake on our part in properly comprehending the message of Geeta or Sri Rama and that of Gandhiji, Dr Kohli said. An atmosphere was created deliberately in which criticising Gandhian philosophy or thought was considered blasphemous, he remarked.
We need to differentiate between use of brute force and violence, Dr Kohli said adding that use of force for repelling an invasion or ensuing security of the society cannot be termed as violence. It was impressed on our mind that the roles played by Krishna and Gandhi were different and we must follow any one of them. In fact, there is no difference in the philosophy of Krishna or Rama and Gandhi. On the contrary there is a great coordination and understanding between them. Nobel Prize winner noted economist Amartya Sen despised Sri Krishna because according to him Krishna’s policy of establishing dharma allowed the blatant use of violence. Dr Kohli said, “Amartya Sen is ready to kill dharma to save the life of a man. This is not acceptable.” All these misconceptions result from our wrong understanding of dharma.
Referring to an article published on September 11, 2011 in Hindi Daily Amar Ujala by former CBI Director Sardar Joginder Singh, Dr Kohli said the author has rightly pointed out how our country has become a soft target for all the terrorist organisations. They do not have any qualms in carrying out their violent, anti-human activities on the soil of India. But we must also identify those people and elements who want to save these terrorists, who provide them the much needed support of all kinds in the country.
Lauding the anti-corruption agitation by Anna Hazare and his team and the spontaneous support it evoked all over the country, Dr Kohli commented that some leaders took exception to call this movement a popular one. They even said that those agitating leaders did not represent the people of this country. But this is not the real picture. When Swami Vivekananda went to Chicago to participate in the All Religions Conference he was not representing India. But after he expressed his thoughts and was acclaimed for his heart-touching speech he received a massive support here in India and the people accepted him as their representative. Who named Mahatma Gandhi or Ravindra NathTagore representatives of Indian people? But they were accepted as people’s representatives by their deeds. Therefore, a true representative of the people is the one who gives powerful expression to the popular feelings and urge for freedom. Those who work for the benefit of the common man in this country are our true representatives, Dr Kohli said.
He condemned the demands for clemency for those terrorists who were held responsible for attacking Indian Parliament, killing innocent countrymen by vested interests. Even the legislative assembly of Jammu & Kashmir brought such a resolution for discussion! This is very unfortunate and detrimental to national security. Those who try to protect and support these terrorists have no place in this country. There is a need to rethink and redefine terms like communalism, secularism, violence and non-violence in the changing context, he said.
Stating that there was absolutely no difference between ‘Bharatmata’ and Jagadamba—the Mother Goddess—Dr Kohli said that service of the children of Bharatmata was like offering worship to the Mother Goddess. Think of every person as the very embodiment of Lord Shiva and think yourself fortunate enough to get a chance to serve him. The RSS has been doing this yeoman service since its foundation, Dr Kohli said.
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