Even as Opposition parties up the ante over alleged incidents of religious reconversion, the Dharm Jagran Samiti has declared that it will ensure India becomes a Hindu Rashtra by 2021.
Licence to stay
Speaking in Agra on Thursday, a Dharm Jagran Samiti (DJS) functionary said Muslims and Christians will have to convert to Hinduism if they want to stay in this country.
The DJS has been at the forefront of the reconversion – or ‘ghar wapsi’ – programmes in recent times in which some Muslims have been reportedly ‘reconverted’ to Hinduism.
Conversion has become a major political hot potato with a few Hindu organisations holding ‘ghar wapsi’ ceremonies—the photo shows one such exercise in Agra—to ‘reconvert’ Muslims
However, their action drew widespread condemnation, leading to the arrest of one activist.
“Our target is to make India a Hindu Rashtra by 2021. The Muslims and Christians don’t have any right to stay here.
“So they would either be converted to Hinduism or forced to run away from here,” Uttar Pradesh DJS head Rajeshwar Singh said.
He was reacting to the arrest of Nand Kishore Valmiki, a DJS activist.
Valmiki was arrested on Tuesday for his alleged involvement in forcefully converting over 100 Muslims to Hinduism in Agra.
Singh said although he has temporarily suspended his ‘ghar wapsi’ programme in Aligarh and some other districts of the state that were supposed to be held on December 25, it would be restarted soon.
The DJS leader claimed that those who have been opposing ‘ghar wapsi’ were fearful of Muslims.
But, he would set India free from this fear, he added.
“I belong to the Solanki sub-caste within the Rajput caste. The Thakurs (Rajputs) respect me. I am their leader and they follow my orders.
“The Muslims had converted Rajputs to Islam by force. But the Rajputs are rising again.
“I will ensure that India is freed of Muslims and Christians by December 31, 2021,” Singh said.
In Etah, Singh reiterated his stand, saying he wouldn’t let Muslims and Christians convert the Hindus.
“We will not let them hunt the Hindus,” he said.
“The enemies have tried many a time in the past to finish Hinduism. But every time, Ram, Krishna and Chanakya came forward to finish them and restore the glory of Hinduism.
“I am also doing the same.”
Explaining the DJS’ plans, Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) secretary general Champat Rai told Mail Today: “We are of the view that there are a handful of Muslims in India.
“Others within the Muslim community are actually Hindus. Their ancestors were converted to Islam forcefully.
“Even writer Taslima Nasrin has said that her ancestors were Hindus. The Batts, who are Muslims in Jammu and Kashmir, are actually Bhatts, the Hindus.”
Rai claimed ‘ghar wapsi’ has been an ongoing VHP campaign for the last 60 years.
A resolution in this regard was passed during the 1966 Maha Kumbh in Allahabad, he said.
“We have re-inducted over six lakh people into Hinduism since 1966.
“Mahatma Gandhi, Savarkar and Swami Dayanand Saraswati had expressed their concern over religious conversion.
Uttar Pradesh DJS head Rajeshwar Singh claimed that those who have been opposing ‘ghar wapsi’ were fearful of Muslims
“They believed it was poisoning the society. Bringing them back to their original religion means correcting the wrong.
“It is the appropriate time now to take it up on a bigger scale,” he added.
A Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leader told Mail Today that they have formed committees in every district of the state for this purpose.
“We have included some Arya Samaj priests in the team because they issue a certificate to a converted person.
“This is a major document to prove that the converted person agrees to it,” he said.
When asked about the posture of the Modi Government on this issue, he said: “We never ask Modi or any other BJP leader before chalking out our strategy.
“We only expect them to speak for or against us to clarify their stand. But Modi is the Prime Minister.
“So his silence means his approval. It is the right time for us to fulfil our agenda.”
UP minister Azam Khan said: “RSS is behaving like the Taliban. They don’t want the Constitution of India.
“They have their own agenda of finishing humanism.”
Meanwhile, reacting sharply to the DJS statement, Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh said: “DJS is a wing of RSS, which had supported Modi and the BJP during the Lok Sabha elections.
“They are now drifting away from the agenda of the NDA.”
He dared the Modi Government to either accept the activities of DJS or “show some guts” and disband it.
Modi stands firm despite challenges from Rajya Sabha
By Amit Agnihotri
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has rejected the Opposition’s demand that he reply to the ongoing debate in the Rajya Sabha on alleged forced conversions.
His decision emboldened the ruling dispensation to blame the Opposition’s “arrogance of numbers” for the ongoing logjam in the Upper House that threatens to derail the Government’s economic reform agenda.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley pointed to the “smooth functioning” of the Lok Sabha, saying the Rajya Sabha hold-up points to “arrogance of numbers, not the arrogance of the Government”.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is said to be upset with the Opposition after he made a statement on the Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti controversy, but the logjam in the Rajya Sabha continued despite his address to the House
The Opposition hit back, saying the Government’s “tyranny of majority” had ensured that the Lower House functioned smoothly despite nine parties “fighting tooth and nail on the issue of conversions”.
While the Government has a brute majority in the Lower House, the Opposition has an upper hand in the Rajya Sabha.
Prime Minister Modi is said to have asked the Government to remain firm in the face of the Opposition’s attack on conversion, and suggested explaining its position directly to the people.
Nine opposition parties have kept the Government on its toes by not letting the Rajya Sabha function for the past four days, seeking the PM’s statement on the controversial issue of conversions, wherein Muslims have been “reconverted” to Hinduism by way of “ghar wapsi” ceremonies.
FM Arun Jaitley said Congress in the Rajya Sabha were suffering from the ‘arrogance of numbers’
The PM came to the Upper House on Thursday as it was the designated day he was supposed to answer questions related to ministries under him, but there was no word from him on the Opposition’s demand.
Sources said the PM had made a statement in both houses of Parliament earlier in the session, ticking off his junior colleague Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti for her controversial remarks, but that had not led to smooth functioning of the House.
The “betrayal” by the Opposition, sources said, was playing on the PM’s mind and is what drove him to ask his team to remain firm.
“The PM has confidence in his ministers. If he feels the need to intervene on any issue, he will, but not under the Opposition’s threat,” a Union minister said.
The Government sources, however, acknowledged that given the deadlock, the Winter Session, which ends December 23, might end without key reform Bills related to insurance and coal sectors passing muster.
The Government’s strategy now is to break the united Opposition camp to make the most of the three working days left in the session.
They hope that the move could help it pass at least the insurance Bill which aims to increase the FDI cap to 49 per cent.