Born in 1931, SL Bhyrappa is the foremost novelists in Bharat today, and his works have been translated into many other languages. In this exclusive interview to Prashanth Vaidyaraj, Bureau Chief (Bengaluru), Organiser, Bhyrappa ji speaks on the ‘Idea of Bharat’, falsification of history, socio-cultural aspects covered in his works like Avarana and the way ahead.
For a long time ‘Idea of India’ has been hijacked by the so-called liberals/secularist for whom anything Hindu was an anathema. Everything related to Hinduism was lampooned. In your view, how is ‘Idea of Bharat’ different from ‘Idea of India’ peddled by liberals?
Those who believed or believe in Nehruvian ‘Idea of India’ do not consider Bharat as sacred. They are materialists. We, who consider Bharat as a sacred entity, see our Itihasa, our forefathers, their science, traditions, culture, etc. with respect. Nehru did not have respect for any of these. When there is no respect, they will consider any part of this idea of Bharat as sacred. Such people see temples and practices as baggage, question the expenses made on lamp oil, flowers, etc. It is the same people who want to control our temples for the sake of money. One another aspect is that we got independence without discipline and hence we didn’t understand the importance of it. We don’t respect our freedom. We think everything has to be done by the government and only worry about ourselves or our community or caste. We have forgotten our duties and needed a PM to tell us the importance of keeping our streets clean and not litter. The idea of Bharat also includes the citizen’s duties towards the nation. The deliberations we had can surely bring in this sense of duty towards the nation.
In ‘Avarana’ you had narrated the rigid socio-cultural aspects of Islam. It didn’t go down well with many ‘seculars’. Why it is that in India freedom of speech/expression is only for a few and those who espouses Hindu ideas are demonised?
Those who protested and indulged in ‘Award Wapasi’ had such characteristics from a long time and is nothing new. What happened during ‘Award Wapasi’ and earlier too was nothing but diverting the attention. It is just like a thief who is running after stealing and when almost caught tries to divert the attention of those pursuing him by pointing at someone else as the culprit. Facts in ‘Avarana’ are based on historical truths which many do not want to accept. Facts always come in the way of political correctness and agendas of Communist historians. As I said earlier, these are the people for whom anything Hindu is not sacred and hence go against anyone who is a Hindu. Freedom of expression is only a tool for such people to beat others with.
Sri Ram Temple at Ayodhya is again in the news. Many suggest, why not hospitals or schools instead of Ram Temple in Ayodhya at the Babri Masjid site. How do you answer this?
These claims are hilarious. Let us assume that this can be done as per those who claims are liberals. In Goa, temples have been destroyed to construct Churches during the inquisition. In this case, what is the need for such Churches and these churches to should way for schools and hospitals as per their arguments? Are those who make such propositions ready to accept this? If we agree to have a hospital at the place of Ram Janmabhoomi, will they agree to have hospitals or schools at all those places where Masjids have been constructed over Hindu temples? I had once been invited to Jaipur Lit Fest once where a journalist asked me what your opinion of Indian secularists is’. I had said that they are all hypocrites. I said this because these secularists change their tongue very often and are not committed to anything.
Tipu was a tyrant who aimed to establish an Islamic empire. Given this fact, is Tipu Jayanti kind of official celebrations required? Have Hindus become so feeble to not even able to counter such blatant attacks on Hindu psyche?
It is required for only those who indulge in vote bank politics. It is not just anti-Hindu but also takes Hindus for granted. Hindus have always taken all such humiliations in their stride and have forgiven. The Kshatra Guna has gone away in the Hindus and in the name of Ahimsa. Ever since the Islamic invasion and given the brutality and force used, Hindus became defeasible. The practice of extreme Ahimsa has only made Hindus lose their valor. Among all theories and texts, it is Bhagavad Gita that has balanced Ahimsa and the need for Kshatra Tejas in us. Misreading of Gita as propounding Ahimsa has to be called out. When Arjun lays down his arms and refuses to fight, Krishna exhorts him to fight and reminds him of his duties. Hindus have become intellectually lazy and don’t even put effort to understand their texts and implement it. If the government is adamant in observing the birthday of a tyrant, Hindus have to protest vociferously without bringing any obstacles to the law & order.
You have been conferred with Lifetime achievement award for furthering the ‘Idea of Bharat’. How in your opinion can the youth and the present generation work on furthering this ‘Idea of Bharat’?
The first and foremost thing that we have to do is create awareness among the youth and children. Then we have to change the syllabus in our education system which has all false information. The Communists and others will start protesting if we do this through the Government syllabus. We have to bring the change in private by involving schools and students by giving proper proofs to them. Then we have to engage in public debates to expose them. We also have to provide good reference books in the libraries for students to study the true history. If we do this systematically, we can shut them down in a few years.
The youth have to study our history thoroughly, and they can do this in their free time. They also have to be constructively engaged in nation-building activities, and the RSS has shown the way to do this through their shakhas and other experiments. If more youth are involved, we can build a bright future for the nation.