Rashriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat, on Monday, September 6, said that Hindus and Muslims should work together for the progress of the country, but also asked "sensible Muslim leaders" to oppose extremism.
“Islam came to Bharat with invaders. This is a historical fact, and it is necessary for this to be stated as such. Sensible leaders of the Muslim community must oppose extremism. They will need to speak up firmly against fanatics."Mohan Bhagwat | RSS chief
Bhagwat added that "this work" requires long-term effort and patience. "The sooner we start this effort, the less damage it will cause to our society," he said.
The RSS chief was addressing a meeting in Mumbai, organised by an organisation called Global Strategic Policy Foundation. The theme of the meeting was ‘Nation First, Nation Above All’ and the participants included Kerela Governor Arif Mohammed Khan and former Lt General Syed Ata Hasnain.
‘Ancestors of Hindus and Muslims Are Same’: Bhagwat
Bhagwat claimed that the basis of Indian unity is “our motherland and its glorious tradition” and went on to say:
"The ancestors of Hindus and Muslims living in India are the same… From our point of view, the word Hindu is a symbol of motherland, ancestors and heritage of Indian culture. Hindu is neither a caste nor a linguistic noun, but it is the name of a tradition guiding the development and upliftment of every person.”
“Wherever in the world diversity was destroyed, civilisations have vanished while only those (living in areas), where diversity was preserved, prospered,” he added.
The RSS chief further claimed: “In this context, we consider every Indian citizen as Hindu.”
He also promised that there will no disrespect for anybody’s opinion, but “we have to think of India's supremacy, not Muslim supremacy".
(With inputs from The Indian Express and Ritvick Bhalekar.)
(An earlier version of this story had references to the Congress which were attributed to the speech of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat at the event. This story has been updated to reflect that Congress was not referred to in the given context of the speech. The error is regretted.)
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