India 2024: The country is looking right through the likes of you

"Most people don’t buy your version of the world. How are you supposed to feel any hope at all?"

The RSS, shown marching here with in their uniform of khaki shorts and white shirt with black caps under their saffron banner, are a lesson in organisation, patience, faith and boots on the ground (photo: National Herald archives)
The RSS, shown marching here with in their uniform of khaki shorts and white shirt with black caps under their saffron banner, are a lesson in organisation, patience, faith and boots on the ground (photo: National Herald archives)
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Mitali Saran

These days of the de facto Hindu Rashtra are dark days for proud sickular libtards—dark, isolating and seemingly hopeless.

Democracy, pluralism and constitutional values are roadkill. Hate overwhelms fraternity. Lies bury truth. Fear trumps freedom. Majoritarianism drowns out the voice of reason.

The country is looking right through the likes of you. Most people don’t buy your version of the world. How are you supposed to feel any hope at all?

This is the moment to learn from an organisation that has been truly inspirational in its resolve to never say die: the RSS.

For decades, India treated the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh as irrelevant at best and dangerous as worst. It was exposed as communal, double dealing, violent, scheming and generally poisonous. The country looked straight through it.

In its 75 years in the wilderness, instead of throwing in the towel, the RSS kept its eye on the ball, remained steadfast in its vision, took the hardest knocks without giving up, and consistently turned historical lemons into present-day lemonade (nationalism comes to mind, as does the ginormous statue of the man who once banned the organisation).

It bent all its energies on working, strategising, organising, consolidating, building, mobilising and fund-raising.

It went to the people and made itself useful; and it campaigned hard to get its message out. Its adherents applied themselves with no guarantee of ever seeing results in their lifetime. But the expectation remained: Apna time aayega (Our time will come).

If you need a reminder of what patient conviction can accomplish, the RSS is an admirable model. These people make Job look like some twitchy teenager with ADD.

And if that just makes you feel worse, become A.J. Muste, the peace activist who protested against the Vietnam war night after night outside the White House.

Asked by a reporter whether he thought his lonely effort was going to affect State policy, he replied, “Oh, I don’t do this to change the country. I do this so the country won’t change me.”

MITALI SARAN is an independent writer, editor and columnist. Views are personal

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