Hindustan, Hinduism & Hindutva


Omkar Dattatray
All the three terms are more or less same and synonymous and the underlying principles are the same. Hindustan is the name of country inhabited by the Hindus and in fact all people living in the country are Hindus no matter to which faith they belong to. All the citizens of the country are Hindus as advocated by the Hindutva forces and there is some merit in this contention of the Hindutvawadies .Hindustan is the most tolerant land in the globe as the Hindus are a tolerant race and they believe in the philosophy of live and let live. Hindustan which is also called Bharat has remained an assimilative land because of the tolerant and inclusive characteristic of Hindus. Hindus are the exponents of the inclusive thought and this is the reason that the people belonging to various faiths find a place of pride in India which is commonly known as Hindustan. People of different faiths live like brothers and sisters in Hindustan and it is an ancient land dating back to five thousand years. Hindustan was a Hindu dominated land but the religious conversions had taken place in the past and people have embraced Islam but basically all are Hindus as they live and follow Indian customs and traditions and are the advocates of the principles of unity in diversity. People of different religions living in India can be called as Hindus because those who live in India are Hindus irrespective of their faith. Thus, there is no harm in calling all the people living in Hindustan as Hindus. Hinduism is one of the ancient religions of the world but to be more specific this religion is without beginning and without end and thus it is appropriate to call it as the Sanatan Dharma and therefore Hindusim is no religion at all and thus all the people who reside in India are Hindus no matter to which faith they belong, but loosely said Hindusim is a finer religion as it is more tolerant and all absorbing and all assimilative and thus there is no difference between Hinduism and Hindutva. There is much similarity between Hindusim and Hindutva and the two terms are not different as held by the congress scion and leader Rahul Ghandhi, the other day and his assertion has generated enough heat and debate and discussion in the country, but the fact is that the Hinduism and Hindutva are more or less same and these are complimentary and supplementary and it is factually wrong to call them as separate terms when the fact is that they connote same meaning and refer to the same religion. Thus Hindutva and Hinduism can be called same and to the super secularists like the congress Hinduism and Hindutva are an eyesore and they lose no opportunity to denounce the Hinduism and Hindutva and they take pride in this and in doing this they try to prove their secularism and secular credentials and hate for Hinduism and Hindutva. Therefore, to the grand old part of congress the Hinduism and Hindutva are different but the fact is that these terms are same and there are glaring similarities between the two and thus to bracket them as different is factually wrong and it should not be done. So, as for as Hindutva is concerned it is a philosophy and a way of life and it has nothing to do with communalism as the word Hindutva is also all absorbing and all assimilative and all inclusive and therefore it cannot be called as communal and sectarian but is through and through tolerant. Hindutva is nothing more than Sanaskritik Rashtriyavad or cultural nationalism. Thus Hindutva can be equated with nationalism and patriotism. The term Hindutva is not narrow but is broad and cosmopolitan in nature. Hindutva implies Indian- ness and Hindustaniyet and cannot be called communal by any stretch of imagination and hence the philosophy of Hindutva embodies characteristic of unity in diversity and this is the shining example of India and because of this India stands tall in the comity of the nations and we should be proud of this. Hinduism and Hindutva advocates the philosophy of Vasudav Kutambakam or one world family and therefore people live peacefully in Hindutva. Hindutva is the breath and soul of India and it is sacrosanct and it should be recognized by the people.
The objective of Hindutva is compassion and love for all human beings as all are respected in this system and as such it influences the society. The term of Hindutva was coined by Vir Savarkar who was a staunch and a firebrand Hindu and he was the advocate of Akhand Prachand Bharat meaning united powerful India .Hindutva is the predominant form of Hindu nationalism in India and some people wrongly compare it with fascism and ethnic absolutism. It is the wrong interpretation of the Hindutva. As a political ideology the term Hindutva was articulated by Vinayak Damodar Savarkar in 1923. It is not fascist at all but is inclusive and all assimilative and therefore it is wrong to call it conservative and orthodox .It connotes supremacy of the Hindu culture and manifests in the respect to the all forms of faith as it regards all people residing in India as Hindus irrespective of their religious affiliation. It believes in united India and works incessantly for the attainment of this objective. It is in consonance with Hinduism and is the extension of Hindu thought and culture. Hindutva is not against Hinduism but is very much in accordance with Hindu Philosophy which is not narrow but very broad and all encompassing and as such it should not be confused with the extreme form of Hinduism as there is nothing as extreme in Hinduism as it is more tolerant and all inclusive and all embracing.
Hindutva is the concept of Indian cultural, national and religious identity. The term conflates a geographically based religious, cultural and national identity and a true Indian is one who partakes of this Hinduness. Hinduism is the name given to the most ancient and persistent religion on the Indian subcontinent and Hindutva is the cultural nationalism and patriotism which should dominate the Indian thought system and therefore terms Hindustan, Hinduism and Hindutva are not overlapping but are complimentary and supplementary to each other and should be understood in this sense.
(The author is a retired Education Officer and Columnist).