Hindutva

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Hindutva is a right-wing idea based on the following beliefs:

  • Believing that the entire Indian subcontinent (which includes countries other than India) is the homeland of the Hindus.
  • Seeing "Hindus" as those who believe India is their fatherland (pitribhumi) and holy land (punyabhumi).
  • Pointing out the history of oppression of Hindus by invaders like Muslims and Christians, and calling for the country to "reverse" the influences that came from these intrusions.
  • Opposing Communism for what many think is a weakening of Hindu culture or power. Calling on people to form a "Hindu Nation" (Hindu Rashtra).
  • Believing cow-killing in India should be banned.
  • Believing all students should have to learn Sanskrit.
  • Believing most modern science discoveries were known and described in the Vedas.

Hindutva is the central idea of the organizations which advocate Hindu nationalism.

Many people who support Hindutva speak of violence against Muslims and Christians as a form of "self-defence" against "invaders".[1] As the Hindutva idea has grown more powerful over the years, many Hindutva activists have been part of riots against minority communities in India.[2] The Hindutva idea is sometimes called fascist[3] Although Hindutva is associated with Hinduism, almost all Hindus today are tolerant or "secular", and most do not support Hindutva. These tolerant Hindus describe the supporters of the Hindutva movement as "the Hindu Taliban".[4]

References[change | change source]

  1. Basu, Tapan Kumar (1993). Khaki shorts and saffron flags: a critique of the Hindu right. [New Delhi]: Orient Longman. p. 20. ISBN 0-86311-383-4.
  2. Paul Brass, The Production of Hindu-Muslim Violence in Contemporary India, University of Washington Press, 2003: p1144.
  3. "The Fascism of Our Times" Social Scientist VOl 21 No.3-4, 1993, p.69[1]
  4. Fritz Blackwell (2004). India: A Global Studies Handbook. ABC-CLIO. pp. p126. ISBN 9781576073483.