Vice President Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday, 7 December, questioned those refusing to sing ‘Vande Mataram’, saying : "If not your mother, who would you salute, Afzal Guru?"
Vande Mataram mane maa tujhe salam. Kya samasya hai? Agar maa ko salam nahi karenge to kya Afzal Guru ko salam karenge? (Vande Mataram means salute to mother. What is problem with it, if you don’t salute your mother, who would you salute, Afzal Guru)
Naidu was speaking at the launch of a book on former Vishva Hindu Parishad chief, the late Ashok Singhal.
When someone says 'Bharat Mata ki jai' it is not only about some goddess in a photo, Naidu said. "It is about all 125 crore people living in this country irrespective of their caste, colour, creed and religion. They all are Indians”.
Mentioning the Supreme Court’s 1995 verdict on Hindutva which says it is not a religion but a way of life, he said: “Hinduism is not a narrow concept, it is a broader cultural connotation of India.”
Hinduism is the culture and tradition of India which has been passed on from various generations. There could be different ways of worship, but there is only one way of life, that is Hinduism, he added.
Naidu attributed the non-violent nature of Indians to Hinduism saying: "every Tom, Dick and Harry attacked India, ruled it, ruined and looted it, but India never attacked any country because of its culture."
Our culture teach us Vasudev Kutumbkam, that means the world is one family, he said.
(With inputs from PTI)