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Hindutva's population explosion scare

Hindutvas population explosion scare

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat (file photo)

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat has demanded that population control be implemented in India and the Centre should formulate a new policy to achieve this. He made this statement while addressing an RSS rally held in Nagpur on Vijayadashami day. His observation is that there is no other option but to control population growth as there is an imbalance in terms of religious demographics and this can change geographic boundaries. South Sudan and Kosovo were formed as a result of such an imbalance. Along with differences in birth rates, imbalances can be created through coercion and intrusion. Therefore, he says, a new policy should be formulated considering all these factors. Since RSS is the progenitor of the ruling BJP government at the Centre, this statement cannot be seen as merely political. It should be considered as the slogan and manifesto that Hindutva politics will raise in the coming elections.

The doctrine of minority population explosion has always been a political weapon used by Hindutva exponents for their hate propaganda. This is a conspiracy theory that the number of minorities in the country, especially Muslims, is increasing day by day and if this trend continues, India will soon become a Muslim country. It is a weapon to 'remind' the majority community using sophistry and lies that they are a weakening community. This propaganda has been around in India even before Hindutva politics started functioning systematically. U.N. Mukherjee, a Hindutvaist, predicted in his 1909 pamphlet 'Hindus: A Dying Race', based on the 1881-1901 censuses, that the rise of the Muslim race would wipe out the Hindus in India. Even after seven decades, the same theory has remained an important thesis for the Hindu Mahasabha. The same argument is now being raised by the Sangh Parivar in a new way. The crux of the campaign is that by 2035, India will become a Muslim-majority country. This theory suggests that the Muslim community aims at population explosion by deliberately increasing the birth rate, forced conversion, and infiltration. A look at the census records and family health survey reports alone will convince anyone that these claims are bogus. The reality is that the fertility rate of all communities in the country is declining. The rate of population growth has also come down significantly. According to experts, the total population will increase gradually and reach 150 crores by 2050 and then decline. 30 years ago, the fertility rate of Muslims was 4.4 per cent, now it is 2.3. The population growth rate of Muslims is one and a half percent less than Hindus. At this rate, even after an entire millennium, this country is not going to become a Muslim-majority nation. And the Sangh Parivar lament of population increase is a lie. Yet, the population issue is emerging as a clear means for the government's bigotry.

This is not the first time that the RSS leadership has made such a statement. In the last ten years, a progression of anti-Muslim politics has been staged in the name of population control. In 2013, it made headlines when the current General Secretary of RSS Dattatreya Hosabale spoke about the decline in the Hindu population at the annual conference in Kochi. He also suggested that every family should give birth to at least three children to solve this 'crisis'. In subsequent years, similar calls were made by Hindutva champions like Sakshi Maharaj and Sadhvi Prachi. A resolution passed at the RSS high-level meeting in Ranchi in 2015 demanded that the current population policy be rewritten to restrict the country's Muslim and Christian populations. In his 2019 Independence Day speech, Narendra Modi himself openly stated that population control should become an urgent agenda. As a continuation of this, UP and Assam announced population control policies. Now it's going to become law. Similar preparations are underway in Parliament. Recently, Union Minister Prahlad Singh Patel himself stated that the legislation in this regard will not be too late. In short, what Mohan Bhagwat said is an announcement of a political weapon that is in the making behind the scenes. It is imperative that this communal poison be brought under control.

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TAGS:Hindutva RSS overpopulation population control policies Mohan Bhagwat Muslim-population 
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