NAGPUR — Nobel laureate and child rights activist Kailash Satyarthi on Thursday attended the Foundation Day-cum-Vijaya Dashmi function of Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS), the ideological mentor of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Invited to the function as chief guest by RSS head Mohan Bhagwat, Satyarthi reiterated RSS’s idea of India as Vishva Guru but signified religious diversity, tolerance and respect unlike RSS’s idea of India as Hindu Rashtra.
“By inviting me, you (Bhagwat) have extended respect, love and compassion to not just the deprived children of India but across the world. I am obliged to you on behalf of all those children,” said Satyarthi while addressing the swayamsevaks (volunteers) of RSS at its headquarters here.
In June this year, former President Pranab Mukherjee had also attended an RSS event in Nagpur, leading to huge uproar in political circles. He had addressed 700-cadre strong Sangh Shiksha Varg. He had also visited the headquarters of RSS.
Recalling renowned physicist Albert Einstein’s ‘theory of relativity’ Satyarthi pushed the idea of India as “Future Vishva Guru” which RSS head Bhagwat has already talked about in his earlier speeches on several occasions.
“I am very concerned that we the humans are also shrinking our spaces. Where will our unilateralism lead us? And in that situation the countries that are following the path of materialism and commercialism will need Indian culture and values. And to rejuvenate that culture and value, each Indian needs to think now,” he said.
Talking about another perspective that is different from RSS idea of India as Hindu Rashtra, Satyarthi said that he believed in inclusiveness and emphasized the importance of “tolerance” and “respect” for a multi-culture/religious country like India.
“I believe in inclusiveness. There are various religions with various way of worships, food, attires and ideologies. This is like a bouquet. This is our strength and beauty. Inclusiveness has two important factors – tolerance and respect – that will ensure our unity in diversity,” he said.
RSS conducts this annual function ahead of Vijaya Dashami each year.
Mohan Bhagwat also delivered his annual speech in the presence of swayamsevaks.