Saffron Modiversary: BJP-RSS celebrations on Modi's one year completion

What would be a celebration of PM Modi and his entourage completing one year in government be without a generous smattering of pro-Hindutva ceremonies? Almost with an intention to underscore the fact that the government takes great pride in stoking the attempts to "Hindutvafy" Indian culture and history, the RSS and BJP have joined hands to pay homage to Hindutva icons on the occasion of the BJP government completing a year.

  "The BJP-RSS combine has planned an elaborate strategy to showcase Hindu icons like Mangal Pandey, Nana Sahib and Rani Laxmi Bai, along with its ideologues like Deen Dayal Upadhyaya, to mark the first anniversary of the Narendra Modi government."

It is perhaps a legitimate move from the party's point of view since the BJP's ascension to power has led to a spike in activities that included beating the Hindutva drum. From the ban on cow and water buffalo slaughter and possession of beef in Maharashtra to the loud cries of the likes of RSS functionary Dinanath Batra to rewrite textbooks in order to make India seem like a Hindu nation, one of the BJP's government's biggest achievement has indeed been giving Hindutva a boost.  Perfectly in time therefore, Home Minister Rajnath Singh has recently demanded that history text books in school include chapters eulogizing Maharana Pratap. And not simply because Singh thinks Maharana Pratap is an important historical figure who should be studied, but because he felt that the Hindu Mewar king gets a short shrift in Indian textbooks in favour of Muslim emperor Akbar. His exact words explaining why he wants Maharana Pratap's exploits included in books: "I have no objections to historians writing Akbar The Great. But why not Pratap The Great?"

It is another thing that most history books have sections dedicated to Maharana Pratap already.
According to the TOI report, after the Prime Minister holds a rally in Mathura's Nagla Chandrabhan village, Deen Dayal Upadhyay's birthplace, a mass awareness and contact programme about exploits of Upadhyay and other Hindutva icons will be launched in Uttar Pradesh. Similar programmes will be organised in Meerut where the 1857 mutiny started, Jhansi where Rani Laxmibai fought the British and Ballia, the birthplace of Mangal Pandey. Lucknow and Kanpur will also witness similar celebrations.

  "On selection of places, Sharma said that they denote "cultural nationalism" and have been related to national heroes and party ideologues in some way or the other."


This is the latest development in an already elaborate process that has started rolling to celebrate BJP's one year the the Centre. While the number of rallies planned to commemorate the occasion has been pegged at anything between 150 to 250, PM Modi is likely to hold at least 500 press conferences across the country to talk about being in governance for a year.


Doordarshan too will literally be Modi-fied with special programmes and interviews airing throughout the week, in order to showcase the government's achievements. That apart, several Union ministers will record interviews which will be televised on Doordarshan. The BJP has also come up with two slogans to publicise the Modi government's achievements.  A reports, "Narendra Modi-led NDA government on Friday issued two slogans - 'Varsh Ek Kaam Anek' & 'Modi Sarkaar Kaam Lagataar' - which will be used during the grand celebrations to commemorate the completion its first year in the office."

However, while self congratulatory programmes such as this isn't unusual in India's political history - all parties have resorted to it in the past and keep advertising their 'achievements' relentlessly - BJP will aggressively look to cover up the several u-turns it has made on issues and it's failure to implement many of its ambitious promises yet, with this opulent celebration.
While many would want to term Modi's one year in government as 'Varsh Ek, Foreign Trips Anek', we will be all ears aabut the 'kaam (work)' they want to celebrate.