Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat said on Friday, 1 January, that it was in the basic character and nature of a Hindu to be patriotic and that the love of the motherland flowed from his/her dharma or spiritual and religious beliefs, The Hindu reported.
Bhagwat was speaking at an event to release the book, ‘Making of a Hindu Patriot: Background of Gandhiji’s Hind Swaraj,’ authored by JK Bajaj and MD Srinivas.
“Gandhiji had said that his patriotism originates from his dharma,” Bhagwat said, asserting that dharma was wider than just religion.
“If someone is Hindu, he has to be patriotic, that will be his basic character and nature. At times you may have to awaken his or her patriotism but he (Hindu) can never be anti-India. But we have to be conscious of the fact that if one loves his country that doesn’t mean land only, it means its people, rivers, culture, traditions and everything,” he said.
Underlining that Hinduism believes in the existence of unity, Bhagwat said: “Difference does not mean separatism and Gandhiji has suggested that Hinduism is the religion of all religions.”
Releasing the book, Bhagwat categorically said there was no need for speculation that the Sangh “is trying to appropriate Gandhiji, that is not the case, no one can appropriate great personalities like him.”
Talking about Gandhiji’s Swarajya, Bhagwat said, as per the report, that he meant not only changing rulers or becoming self govern, for him (Gandhiji) the struggle for Swaraj was the reconstruction of society based on civilisational values.