RSS says Akhand Bharat reunification unlikely today | Greenwatch Dhaka | The leading online daily of Bangladesh

RSS says Akhand Bharat reunification unlikely today


New Delhi:  The ruling BJP and its ideological mentor, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh today played down the remarks Ram Madhav on Akhand Bharat – described as an integration of Pakistan and Bangladesh with India through popular goodwill – which triggered a controversy in the wake of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Pakistan.
Remarking that the remarks of Mr Madhav, a veteran RSS man and the BJP general secretary, was his own point of view, RSS ideologue Rakesh Sinha told NDTV Akhand Bharat is a cultural and not a political concept.“It is neither a programme nor an utopia, but an ideal,” he said. It is achievable only if the “people of Pakistan and Bangladesh accept the pre-Islamic ethos and culture of India”, which in the current situation is extremely unlikely, he said.
The RSS, Mr Sinha clarified, accepts Pakistan and Bangladesh as “sovereign nations”. Also, he said, given their “anti-Hindu feelings” and “hatred of India” we do not want the people”.
Responding to a series of questions on the issue, BJP spokesperson MJ Akbar recalled the speech of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee delivered in Lahore in 1999, in which he said India and Pakistan negotiate as sovereign nations. “And that fact is a fact,” he said.
Asked why the party general secretary made these remarks when the stand of the party and the government are clear, he said Mr Madhav “was answering to a particular question…he has a right to his own views. But the government’s position requires no clarification.”
In an interview to international news network Al Jazeera, Mr Madhav said, “The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh still believes that one day these parts (Pakistan and Bangladesh), which have for historical reasons separated only 60 years ago, will again, through popular goodwill, come together and Akhand Bharat will be created…. As an RSS member, I also hold on to that view.”
The comments triggered a controversy, given that the interview was aired after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Lahore on Friday to wish his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif on his birthday.
The Left Front has said in the backdrop of such comments, superficial talks between the two leaders cannot help strengthen the ties between the two nations.
The opposition Congress has taken a dig, saying achieving Akhand Bharat needs a “large heart” and therefore calls for a “heart transplant”.
“The word intolerance must move out of our dictionaries,” said Congress spokesperson Tom Vadakkan. “Just going to the birthday party of a Pakistani counterpart does not mean  that you have given up intolerance.”


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