What have the Sanghis got against it?
By Faraz Ahmad
Prime Minister Narendra Modi exhorted his party colleagues in his valedictory address to the BJP national executive, on Sunday, March 20, not to detract from his government’s developmental agenda and not fall prey to the Opposition (read the Congress and now the Left) and TV channels (except ZeeNews, Times Now and Rajat Sharma’s and assorted Sanghi channels) attempt to drag them into controversies. Actually that leaves hardly any TV channels. Perhaps he was implying don’t give interviews to Ravish Kumar, and now Rajdeep Sardesai and Barkha Dutt as well. What sane advice, becoming of a statesman and not a Sanghi pracharak for once, one would like to say.
But in the same breath the Prime Minister also declared that there will be no compromise on ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai’ slogan. The political resolution of this two day national executive was even more strident implying that Bharat mein rehna hai to Bharat Mata ki Jai kehna hoga (You have to say Bharat Mata ki Jai if you want to live in India.) Earlier it was Bharat mein rehna hai to Beef nahi khana hoga” Before that it was Ghar Wapsi. Then the whole issue of reservation for Dalits and Backward communities.
Modi and Shah may try to put it all on the doorstep of Rahul Gandhi and now the Left for provoking his party MPs and ministers to get distracted from his development agenda, but it is so amply evident that rather than the Opposition, it is Modi’s alma mater and the backseat driver the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), its numerous tentacles like the VHP, Bajrang Dal, ABVP etc. and Sangh Sarsanghchalak Mohanrao Bhagwat who keep the pot simmering all along, apparently to ensure that Modi’s critics do not succeed in nailing him on his ‘Achhe Din’ promises galore.
Be that as it may, it is pertinent to ask what does the Sangh have against Jai Hind. As children we were living behind Turkman Gate and every now and then India’s first Prime Minister and the architect of modern India Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru would come to Ramlila Grounds to address public meetings and my parents, specially my mother a devout Muslim and an ardent admirer of Nehru would rush to all these rallies carrying with her three young children as did many other men and women and their children, both Hindus and Muslims pouring on to Ramlila grounds in large numbers. Nehruji would always end his speech with the slogan ‘Jai Hind’, repeat it thrice and the Ramlila Grounds would reverberate with Jai Hind slogan.
Indira Gandhi too ended her public speeches with ‘Jai Hind’ and so did Rajiv and now even Sonia. So did Lal Bahadur Shastri and mind you Atal Bihari Vajpayee never ended his Independence Day speech with ‘Bharat Mata ki Jai.’ It was always Jai Hind, repeated thrice. It seems that these semi-literate and ill-informed Sanghis from Mohan Bhagwat to Sadhvi Jyoti and Yogi Adtiyanath and I don’t even know the names of most of these wannabes, including Narendrabhai believe that ‘Jai Hind’ has been invented by Nehru and they have such antipathy to every word uttered by the Nehru-Gandhis that even if they roused patriotic passions, the Sanghis, for all their pseudo-patriotism, would recoil in abhorrence. So Modi has to perforce wily nily say Jai Hind when he ends his Independence Day speech but that has to be prefixed by Bharat Mata ki Jai and suffixed by Vande Matram, shouted as many times. One may ask this pracharak and his Sanghi fellow parivar members what is the difference between the substance of Jai Hind and Bharat Mata ki Jai?
I called them ignorant and ill-informed because had they done some little research on ‘Jai Hind’, they would have realized that Jai Hind slogan was not coined by Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru or his family and they have no patent right over it.
Ramchandra Moreshwar Karkare, an ardent admirer and follower of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose inspired by Netaji and his Azad Hind fauj (Army) wrote before Indian independence a patriotic play and a book titled ‘Jai Hind’ in appreciation of Indian freedom fighters. Karkare, originally a Maharashtrian hailed from Gwalior and was a follower of revolutionary freedom fighter Chandrashekhar Azad.
On India gaining independence commemorative post mark “Jai Hind: 15 Aug; 1947” was released and then later Major Abid Hasan Safrani of the Indian Army adopted it as a slogan of the Indian Army.
By the way there was a noted film producer, director Mehboob Khan who made one of the greatest masterpieces of Hindi cinema “Mother India.” Translated into Hindi it means Bharat Mata which role Sanjay Dutt’s mother Nargis played in the movie acting the toiling and much harassed and exploited poor village woman with two little children to look after.
Some years later Mehboob Khan made another movie titled this time “Son of India”. That film did not become as famous as Mother India but had a catchy song still remembered “Nanha, munna raahi hoon, desh ka Sipahi hoon, bolo mere sang Jai Hind, Jai Hind, Jai Hind.” That catchy song and tune is still heard on the radio. That song inspiring national fervor was not written or given music to by any Sanghi. The movie as I said was made by Mehboob Khan. Shakeel Badayuni was the lyricist and Naushad the music director of the film. On screen rendition was done by Master Sajid and if I am not wrong it was sung by Kamal Barot.
If you see that song on Youtube, you would notice that Jai Hind symoblised a united and confident India marching forward. Why can’t the Sanghis join all of us in raising the slogan Jai Hind. The most shameful part of it is that the supine and equally illiterate and ignorant Congressmen instead of getting up and questioning the Sanghis’ reluctance to say Jai Hind, capitulated and lined up behind the saffron brigade on this silly issue.