Right-wing outfit Sanatan Sanstha has called for the removal of the word ‘secular’ from the Preamble of the Indian Constitution. The word ‘secular’ was included in the Preamble during the reign of Indira Gandhi government as a part of 42nd amendment of the Constitution. The demand to remove the words ‘secular’ and ‘socialist’ from the Preamble of Indian Constitution is not new and Shiv Sena too had put forward a similar proposal in 2015. Even Balasaheb Thackeray had stated that India can’t remain as a secular nation. Later, Sena joined hands with BJP but the difference of opinion cropped up between both the parties with time.
Congress MP Hussain Dalwai said, “Why is Sanatan Sanstha trying to rake up this issue now? The Court will deliver its verdict. Does the outfit have faith in the Constitution, judiciary, and democracy? They are promoting the agenda of one religion one nation.”
Now, the Sanatan Sanstha is carrying forward Sena’s agenda for gaining political mileage in 2019 by demanding for the removal of the word ‘secular’ from the Preamble of the Indian Constitution. They are trying to hijack Sena’s agenda to derive political mileage out of this issue. The Sanatan Sanstha has been mobilising the support of people to fulfil its objective of Hindu Rashtra. The outfit stated that Indira Gandhi had included the word ‘secular’ in the Preamble of the Indian Constitution for gaining political mileage.
Sunil Ghanwat, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh convenor and coordinator of Hindu Janajagruti Samiti said, “We really don’t understand why these secular people want to involve the name of our outfit as responsible for the murder of such rationalists. We are part of a spiritual organisation. Shyam Manav had mentioned that the Sanatan Sanstha is trying to brainwash and hypnotise newly joined activists of the outfit. In that case, Manav should send such people to the border to fight against Pakistan.”
According to Chetan Rajhans, the National spokesperson of Sanatan Sanstha, the Hindu society lacks constitutional protection under the current secular system whereas minorities enjoy protection. He said that no definition of ‘secular’ word exists in the Indian Constitution. There is no clarity about whether Indian Constitution is secular, its citizens are secular, or the country is secular! Rajhans said that Hindu society is being targeted in the name of secularism. He added that false allegations are being levelled against the outfit. Rajhans’ statements have come exactly a day after Congress and NCP had called for a demand on imposing a ban on the Sanatan Sanstha. Chetan further said that the pseudo-seculars are spreading lies and government should take action against them.
When AV spoke to Chetan Rajhans, he said, “Several organisations are working for the promotion of Hindutva but only SanatanSanstha is being made the soft target. An investigation should be conducted to nab the real culprit. Attempts are being made by Congress and Communist party to defame the SanatanSanstha. Some liberal-minded people are using the media and our outfit’s name to defeat the ruling party in the upcoming election. We are working for the cause of Hindutva.”
He added that there has been a demand to impose a ban on the SanatanSanstha but no evidence has been found about the outfit’s involvement in the terror activities. Rajhans called for an action against the media for spreading false news against them. The Congress and NCP had called for a permanent ban on the SanatanSanstha. Former chief minister of Maharashtra Prithviraj Chavan too had sent a proposal to the centre in 2011 seeking a ban on the outfit.
NCP MLA Jitendra Awhad said, “As per my sources, a conspirator had planned to carry out bomb blasts to disrupt the Maratha agitation. Congress, pseudo-seculars, and communists are trying to defame us and our spiritual work. They are levelling false allegations of violence against us.”
The Sanatan Sanstha also claimed that Vaibhav Raut and nine others arrested in the Nallasopara explosive arm case have no connection with the organisation. On the other hand, Vaibhav Raut is an active member of Govansh Raksha Samiti. He had followed the Hindu extremist agenda, had taken part in the protests held at Nallasopara and has been seen working with Sanatan Sanstha.
Justice B.G. Kolse Patil, a former judge of Bombay High Court stated, “Hinduism and Secularism cannot be compared. The Sanatan Sanstha is carrying forward this agenda to remove secularism from the Constitution since a long time but it is next to impossible to implement. They keep on raising such agendas in several press conferences without any specific motive.”
Raut also had submitted a memorandum to the political parties and raised his objections against the proposal to ban Sanatan Sanstha. Even though his pictures are visible on Santan Sanstha’s website, the outfit had denied his association with them. Even though Sanatan Sanstha claims itself to be a spiritual outfit, its members are linked for the murder of rationalists! Why is Sanatan Sanstha trying to mislead everyone by spreading lies?
By Mohit Soman & Suraj Chandran