May  2003 
Year 9    No.87

Cover Story

NEW DELHI, December 17, 2002
‘Hindutva opponents will get death sentence’

By Neena Vyas

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad has warned of a "storm ahead which was not going to be limited to Gujarat’’ and indicated clearly that its next target would be five states — Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Delhi — where it is gearing up to spread the "Hindutva" ideology.

Praveen Togadia, VHP secretary-general, told the press here this evening what in his view constituted the important ingredients of Hindutva. "The Muslims here will enjoy the same place or status as Hindus enjoy in Pakistan, maybe even slightly better status,’’ he said. And as for Pakistan, the VHP was in favour of "dismembering’’ it, reminding everyone that "fundamentalism and extremism cannot be finished till Pakistan is dismembered.’’

‘Hindutva opponents will get death sentence’:

Muslims alone were not the target of his ire. All those who opposed Hindutva, and this certainly included secularists, would get the "death sentence’’ he declared. But the VHP would not have to carry out the sentence, the people would. "All Hindutva opponents will get the death sentence and we will leave it to the people to carry this out,’’ he said.

"Abhimanyu is not yet dead’’, Mr. Togadia said. "The Mahabharat will be fought in Delhi’’, he said perhaps talking about the Lok Sabha elections due in 2004.

He spelt out the Hindutva agenda — Ram temple at Ayodhya, anti-conversion law throughout the country, a common civil code, abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution which gives a special status to Jammu and Kashmir, deportation of all Bangladeshi intruders and a statute for cow protection. It was not a coincidence that all of this is part of the well-known and declared agenda of the RSS as well as the BJP. In fact, Mr. Togadia patted the BJP. "In Gujarat, the BJP has come back to its own agenda, the Gujarat election has shown the right direction to the BJP.’’

Prior to 1989, the BJP itself was a "political untouchable," but that was not the case now, the coalition National Democratic Alliance government was proof of this. However, even after the NDA took birth the BJP’s Hindutva agenda remained "untouchable". Mr. Togadia and the VHP would set that right. It had already been set right in Gujarat where "our Hindutva agenda has become touchable (acceptable),’’ he argued.

Gujarat had, in fact, "finished the credibility of the secularists’’. They had described the Gujarat Chief Minister, Narendra Modi, as `khalnayak’ (villain) but the people saw him as a hero. Those who had said that the VHP belonged to the ‘lunatic fringe’ were wrong." I have moved centre–stage, and they (secularists) have become the impotent fringe.’’

He had addressed 60 meetings during the election campaign, and he need not remind Mr. Modi what the VHP expected of him. "He knows it well, he will not forget."n

JAIPUR, December 15:
‘Just as it was done in Germany’

After the "successful" experiment in the Hindutva laboratory of
Gujarat, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) plans to make the whole country a laboratory to establish "Hindu supremacy" in India.

"We will make a laboratory of the whole country. This is our promise and our resolve. If madrassas, the jihadi laboratory, are allowed to educate to kill non–Muslims, why can’t we have our own laboratory?" VHP leader Praveen Bhai Togadia said in a press conference here on Sunday.

"I cannot waste even two days in building the laboratory. Rajasthan has already become the laboratory of Hindutva," he said. The VHP leader said that Gujarat would be repeated in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and other states.

"The people of Gujarat have paid their tributes to the Ram Bhaktas of Godhra. Gujarat has become the graveyard of secular ideology and we will extend it to Delhi via Jaipur."

"We were termed as lunatic fringe. Now secularists have become the impotent fringe," said Togadia. Narendra Modi, pitted against all secular forces, is the Abhimanyu who finally won. "Now we will arrange a Kurukshetra in Delhi… We will colour the whole country in saffron."

The VHP promised to change the "history of India and geography of Pakistan" in two years. And Acharya Dharmendra had the whole methodology planned: "Just as it was done in India in 1947 and in Germany before that."

The VHP leaders said that the journey of Hindutva, which stopped in 1992–93, has now resumed from Gujarat. "We will go to each corner to bring the country towards Hindu politics. Gujarat elections would change the ideology, colour and composition of all political parties," said Togadia.

PUNE, December 29, 2002
‘Secular India’s days numbered’

Taking a dig at the Congress’ ‘‘appeasement’’ policies, VHP international general secretary Praveen Togadia today appealed to the masses to pull down those governments that do not recognise the interests of the Hindus. Addressing the dharma sabha in Pune this evening, Togadia said: ‘‘Those who want to rule India will have to accept the concept of Hindu rashtra, a saffron flag and Vande Mataram.’’

‘‘We don’t wish to recreate Gujarat in Maharashtra, but wish to reinstate Chhatrapati Shivaji’s rule at the Red Fort,’’ he said. Saying terrorists, with support from across the border, have been waging a war against Hinduism, Togadia criticised Congressmen who, he said, conveniently stayed silent after Godhra. ‘‘Were they looking for a permit to speak from Italy?’’ he asked.

Togadia drew parallels between Lankadahan, the burning of Lanka by Lord Hanuman in the Ramayana and the post–Godhra riots.

VHP international working president, Ashok Singhal, who also attended the meet said Muslims should no longer stake their claim on Ayodhya, Kashi and Mathura. Singhal said the dharma sansad scheduled in Delhi between February 22–25 could take "harsher steps". He said that the days of secularism are numbered in the country".

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