Do not ban the Sri Ram Sene

By Prabhakar Timble
18 June 2012 22:28 IST

Birth is not in my hands, but the path to life and death is within my control. As a Hindu, I want a plural life with no fetters of nationalism and handcuffs of culture tied by the so called protagonists of ‘Hindu Rashtra’ or the outfits of Sri Ram Sene type. I stand for secularism because it fosters diversity and democracy. At the same time, I would not demand a ban on organisations drenched or floating in the muddy waters of communalism and cultural fundamentalism. They have a point of view, though regressive and perverted. Their agenda directly rocks the Indian constitutional boat. Such forces need to be tackled through a combination of democratic weapons and education rather than a blanket ban.

Official secularism v/s unofficial communalism

Though secularism is the official ideology of independent India, caste discrimination and communalism is our unofficial creed. The ideal of secularism is being mocked at by the protagonists of Hindutva. The assassination of Mahatma Gandhi by the sympathizer of the RSS forced the Hindu communalists to lie low but only for a short period. Now the same venom is packaged and spread by many similar Vatikas, Vahinis, Parishads and Senas. The Muslim fundamentalists have eroded and corroded our secular philosophy. Besides, with gruesome stories of murder, rape, loot and violence in our textbooks we have nurtured a hatred of the Muslims.  Needless to say, the partition of the country giving birth to a Muslim State dented the roots of secularism. On the one side, the Congress party always created a fear psychosis and panic in the minds of minorities, particularly the Muslims of majority fundamentalism. The successive government hardly worked for lifting the Muslim community out from the stockpile of dirt, disease, poverty and squalor and as a result they continue to be under the control of their religious leaders and fanatics. On the other hand, the Hindu communal organisations did not halt the game of Hindu pride and classifying secularism as appeasement of minorities.

The Hindu Rashtra activists are not the saviours of Hindus. They have gone to the extent of demonstration in support of Malegaon blast accused Lt Col Prasad Shrikant Purohit at the Nashik court in Maharashtra. The army officer was alleged to have trained the other accused in handling explosives and procuring RDX was produced at the court by the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) of the Maharashtra police. Similarly, Sri Ram Sene, which supports the cause of “Hindutva” and “Hindu Culture”, is nothing but a outfit of organized crime. It is infamous for propagating, nay implementing its agenda by  assaulting people, vandalising property, destroying artistic expressions, separating mixed couples; in general and forcing down the “hindutva agenda” down the throats of people. In 2010 an undercover investigation/sting operation by the television channel Headlines Today and the magazine Tehelka, the President of Sri Ram Sene, Pramod Muthalik and the top aides of his outfit were caught on camera agreeing to vandalise an art exhibition in return for money. Pramod Muthalik is the self-appointed guardian to protect Hindu culture from being corrupted as much as Kejriwal and core members of Team Anna are the Muthaliks’ of anti-corruption movement in our country. Their proclamation on any politician should be deemed to be final and their forecast on tainted ministers is beyond challenge!

Sri Ram Sene to Hindu Rashtra

I recollect one widely circulated SMS by Hindu nationalists of Bharat who consider it anti-national to be citizens of secular India-----“A Catholic lady appoints a Sikh Prime Minister under a Muslim President in Hindu India”. I also wish to underline that secularism, like democracy and nationalism is a Western concept. This is the major reason why these values are not popular amongst Indians. Our caste comes first, followed by religion, buttressed by region and the affiliation to the nation to be thought of during a calamity or disaster.

"I do not expect India of my dreams to develop one religion, i.e., to be wholly Hindu or wholly Christian or wholly Mussalman, but I want it to be wholly tolerant, with its religions working side by side with one another.'' so said Mahatma Gandhi. As opposed to this pseudo-secularism is a term coined by the BJP and its frontal organisations to scoff at Indian secularism and project it as a “crime” against the Hindu majority. Such communal organisations refuse to recognize the contributions of Muslims and other minorities, to India's history and culture. They selectively concentrate on intolerant Muslim rulers, paint the entire Muslim community as intolerant, overwork the rumour mill to give legitimacy to this build up and continue till it hardens into a mainstream opinion.  To build suspicion and acrimony with the Christians, the same manufacturing process is put into operation sowing the seeds of religious conversions, minority rights under the Indian Constitution and Western cultural influences. It is only during the last decade and a half that secularism has come under a cloud and the concept of a Hindu Rashtra is being asserted aggressively. The communalists tasted success with the demolition of the Babri Masjid at Ayodhya and smelt blood through state-sponsored cum partnered massacre of Muslims in Gujarat. Probably, this has bolstered the movement for a Hindu State. Having said this, I have to record that Godhra carnage cannot be justified.

Just as Lok Pal cannot ensure freedom from corruption, a mere statement of secularism in the Constitution cannot confirm independence from communalism. At the same time, no Ram Sene, Durga Sene, Vanar Sene or Hindu Janajagruti Mandals are formed to spread peace and ‘dharma’. They are organisations cornered by vested interests to grab social and political power by overplaying the communal card. Freedom from policing by such extra-legal and extra-constitutional bodies and the gift of a secular democracy can be retained only through continuous struggle and vigilance. The secular minded intellectuals belonging to different faiths should take secularisation of their respective community as a moral responsibility. What is needed is effective opposition to the forces of communalism and particularly when political power has been bestowed in the hands of such forces due to the utter failure of political parties and groups who profess to be secular. A mere ban by the government without active market intervention by secular forces would not stop the rise of a militant Hindu movement led by the RSS and the Sangh Parivar. As we monitor the meter of corruption and good governance, let us not forget to track the thermometer of communal orientation and mobilisation.

Disclaimer: Views expressed above are the author's own.

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Prabhakar Timble

Mr Prabhakar Timble is an educationist and a legal expert. He has served several educational institutions, especially as the Principal of Government College at Quepem, Kare College of Law in Madgao as well as couple of Management Institutes. He was also the State Election Commissioner of Goa.

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communalism in any form is evil, whether it is Hindu, Islamic or Christian and that has been the essence of Prabhakar Timble's writing. Unfortunately those blinkered by narrow outlook in life get 'hurt' when they are exposed. Among Hindus there are two kinds who get communalized, Firstly, those who represent the brahminical order and lament about loss of hegemony during the modern time due to the democratization. Others, who belong to the lower strata in the caste system and are influenced by the upper caste Rams and Valmikis to eternally behave like Vanars ( monkeys).

Unfortunately these Vanars still prefer subjugation to pick up crumbs that are thrown towards them by those occupying the seats of power in the religious hierarchy who talk about nationalism on one hand and on the other, perpetrate the age old system of using ' Shudras' to fulfill their evil designs. These half baked souls, numbed by the intellectual slavery over the years too begin to see conspiracy by other religious fanatics without realizing that they are the modern day shudras, carrying out the dirty work of their leaders.

They need the hollow slogans like nationalism but in reality they are the ones who write clemency petitions and run away from the battlefield to save their own skin. in Marathi they say, ' Sudnyas sangane na lage...."

- Hari Satarkar, Khadpa Bandh, Ponda | 22 nd June 2012 17:27


When the most communal outfit called as the popular front of india, which is involved in spreading talibani brand of islam and jihadi mentality started there work in Goa some months back where were these secularist who are shouting from rooftops now . on the contrary many of them attented the rally at margoa . where were these hypcrites who spew venom at hindu organisation gets muted at other religious fundamentalist organnisation . the organisation which chooped the hand of a christian lecturer in kerala for a very petty reason .which bans girls from wearing western clothes eand enforces shariat and burkha is welcome in goa !! is these secularism or just a conspiracy against hindus any body just google popular front of india and check it its invoved in lots of antinational work ..... can any body explain the silence please

- pradip naik, quepem | 21 st June 2012 18:17


Excellent article, indeed an eye opener. The rise of saffron terror is alarming and those who fall prey to the propaganda by these extreme right wing fanatics are usually the youth of lower castes. So you will find those who die are Malgonda Patils and Yogesh Naiks and not Muthaliks and Athavales, because the latter only preach and instigate the former.

RSS has failed to accommodate many such extremist elements as it has to balance between its own brand of hindutva and its ambition to attain power through BJP. Splinter groups are bound to emerge because they know that there are enough takers in this country where frustration among the masses needs an outlet. Communist movement underwent a similar situation a few years ago resulting in the birth of numerous communist parties in India with own distinct agenda.Now it is the turn of Hindutvavists.

Hope the youth of bahujan samaj in Goa read this article and learn something. There are very few like Prabhakar Timble who are genuinely concerned. Once again I salute you sir for your bold thoughts.

- Gajendra Tari, Alto Porvorim | 19 th June 2012 20:50


Goa RSS has been teaching small children in goa for past so many years that St. Xavier Basilica has been built by destroying a shiva temple. that RSS will one day make india a hindu nation, build ram temple at ayodhya and also build that shiva temple again by raising down the basilica. the very same boys have grown up today to form bjp. it was unfortunate that congress was captured by the currupt leaders and people had no choice but to vote for the only available opposition. Congress was selling goan land bjp wants to attack our religion. Where do go from here? what do we do? to be or not to be thats the question!

- Peter, margao | 19 th June 2012 11:31


bab timblo,

let any sene come like shev sene. what can they achieve if goenkars do not support them. it is up to us. in democracy, anyone can say anything but if break rule of law should be punished. so when "moti dongor" is boiling why government keep quiet?

why could govt not prove links of satonan darma and the margao blast? then how can you blame satonan darma? take case of MOI, has church not held goa sarkar to ransom with behind scene moves?

some people see Sangh everywhere and you should clean your mind of that. If RSS do anything wrong, please lodge FIR. You could always do it. Malegao is yet to prove so do not pass judgements.

Back to Rama Sene, let them come. we will show what monkeys they are.

- francis pereira, margao | 19 th June 2012 11:20


So the hindu nation strikes back at the writer. those who support hindu nation should read malegao bomb blast judgment of bombay high court. Being hindu or indian is one thing, loving idea of hindu nation is one thing but doing criminal activities, murdering people, planting bombs etc for that purpose is entirely a different thing. in malegao bomb blast case high court has compared these radical associations within sangh parivar, sanatan and shriram sene (mutalik is one of the persons mentioned in investigation as co-conspirators) with khalistan movement. I request mr. timble to study these judgments and write an article or series so that the common people would understand these criminals properly. They are no different then hitler (not adolf of germany but the serial killer and chain snatcher of goa) and people must know them so to be safe from them.

- jayesh nayak, porvorim | 19 th June 2012 11:07


Well said Prabhakarbab; your writings are always a pleasure to read.


- Samir Kelekar, Bangalore | 19 th June 2012 10:29


This is very true, our country is not protecting hindus in our country only, not tolerating any hindus activities, not giving enough rights and this because of politics, all political leaders are needed is only votes for there party, that can be given by huge population only....and ofcourse Muslims supports them in getting it.....if india is highly populated then this is because of muslims only, why goverment is not putting ban on their birth rate? ???? if during diwali, hindu celebrate during mid night with music then its noise pollution and if muslim starts there activities with loud speakers everyday without fails then thats not noise pollution?????.....on this issue goverment or any one belongs to that religion will say its Religious..............why goverment is not putting ban on this??? y??? y??? Goverment can answer on this????

- kalpesh, Mapusa | 19 th June 2012 10:21


I sincerely hope that all the so called "Hindutva Rakshaks" read this article so that they know what REAL Hindu Philosophy is !!!!

- Rajiv Hede, Margao | 19 th June 2012 08:45


Some body should educate writer, there is no link between RSS and Ram sene this has been established time and again, why one should target somebody for no reason, i think writer is suffering from selective mnatia.

Pl. some body educate him however eminent he may be, but certainly do not have clue about the subject..... education is the best solution for such issue / subjects

- Purushottam, Ponda | 19 th June 2012 08:39


Professor Timble's writings are always thought provoking and appeal to the rational mind. In this age where so called intellectuals are sold and bought day in and day out, he stands tall like a pillar of inspiration to the modern mind. We live in an egalitarian society and are expected to respect views of other though we do not agree with the same. But those who suffer from the jaundice of communal prejudice and narrow parochial mentality will find it difficult to digest what he writes.

The virus of communal hatred is spreading its tentacles without being visible at times and more thinkers like him who are not cronies of politicians to spread fresh and liberal thoughts is the need of the hour.

- Rajan Kamat, Feira Alto Mapusa | 19 th June 2012 08:26


This writer just love to write against RSS and also against good politicians like Parrikar. He doesn’t show in open but he likes to praise Congress and especially Dighambar in a very tactful way. Because of such Hindus who call them self liberal and secular, our society and religion has gone haywire. Even Goa New encourage such writers I have seen. But truth always prevails and wins the test under any difficult circumstances. Jai hind - Vinayak (9767948243)

- Vinayak Naik, Margao | 18 th June 2012 23:16


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