facetoface: Subramanian Swamy, BJP leader
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facetoface: Subramanian Swamy, BJP leader

There is not a dull moment in the company of Subramanian Swamy. Admitting that he was not made the finance minister because of his “earnestness” over the black money issue, the BJP leader is, however, hopeful that PM Narendra Modi will one day keep his promise.

chandigarh Updated: Feb 08, 2015 17:55 IST
Chitleen K Sethi
Chitleen K Sethi
Hindustan Times
Chandigarh,black money,ghar wapsi

There is not a dull moment in the company of Subramanian Swamy. Admitting that he was not made the finance minister because of his “earnestness” over the black money issue, the BJP leader is, however, hopeful that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will one day keep his promise on black money. Swamy talked to assistant editor Chitleen K Sethi on the sidelines of a lecture at Panjab University, Chandigarh, about Delhi polls, ghar wapsi and a host of other issues.

What is your take on the Delhi elections?

The BJP will win with a thin margin -- maybe 37 seats, plus minus two. Despite all the propaganda, Kiran Bedi has made a big difference in Delhi, especially among women voters, and surprisingly, among the lower ranks of police.

But most surveys predict an AAP victory in Delhi.

The surveys should be investigated. They never tell you the sample size. There should be stratified sampling, but that is never done. The AAP has gathered support because of the decimation of the Congress. The Congress will be down to 3-4 seats. Most of Kejriwal’s workers are from outside and Delhi people have understood that the AAP can work only towards disorder.

But poll pundits say choosing Kiran Bedi as the CM candidate was the BJP’s biggest mistake. She is seen as a dictator.
That is only propaganda spread by those who have been hurt by Bedi’s strictness. In BJP, there is no place for dictators. It is not a party run by a family. There is the RSS, the VHP, the Mazdoor Sangh. No one -- not even Modi -- can be a dictator.

How do you react to the ghar wapsi programme of the RSS?

What is wrong with it? If people are convinced to come back to the religion which their forefathers followed without any inducement, then there is nothing illegal in it. It is unconstitutional if you induce or threaten someone. No FIR has been lodged which says that there was a promise of an inducement, not even the one lodged in UP.

Even Barack Obama lectured India about religious tolerance.

Obama is under pressure. His state department brings out reports which are very critical of India. It is connected with the Christian movement. Even if half of the Hindus unite we can get two-thirds majority in Parliament. They fear that the Hindu vote is getting united leaving caste differences behind.

What about the PM’s promise on black money?

I have written to the PM about the steps that can be taken to get black money back within two months. I told him that if he could not do it, then he should give me control of some organisations and I would do it. He does not have to make me the finance minister. The amount of black money is close to Rs 120 lakh crore, almost 60 times our annual income tax revenue.

Why is the PM not doing anything about it?

A lot of top industrialists are friends of various people and they don’t allow it to happen. That is why I was not made the finance minister. Modi will do it someday (bring black money back), but if he wants it to be done earlier, he can tell me. I’ll do it.

How do you react to saffronisation of education?

Show me a single textbook changed by the government, though I believe changes are required. We need to bring about a renaissance in India though the right knowledge about our past achievements. This is to counter the inferiority complex we suffer vis-a-vis the fair races.

But is the BJP not glorifying India’s past in unrealistic terms?

Whatever the claim, it will be scientifically substantiated. International researchers are telling us about Sanskrit being the best language for artificial intelligence; the existence of Dwarka and the Saraswati river are scientifically established.

Swamy’s swipes: On Manmohan Singh

He may be a Singh but he was the “circus singh” (circus lion) trained only to obey orders. He gets 100 marks for his personal character but zero for national character.

On Jawaharlal Nehru

Jawaharlal Nehru failed in Cambridge University and even then people call him Pandit Nehru. BR Ambedkar was a great scholar and should be called Pandit BR Ambedkar.

On 2 G

I once asked Manmohan Singh if he knows what 2G is, to which he replied that he only knew Soniaji and Rahulji.

On PV Narasimha Rao

He was not given his due credit by the Congress for his contributions in the growth of the country. We will make sure that Rao gets his share of recognition.

Education system

It does not encourage students to think or take calculated risks. It is designed to produce clerks and guarantee poverty.

On reservation

We need to move slowly to restrict reservation to only those who have socially imposed liabilities.

Compiled by Vinod Kumar

First Published: Feb 07, 2015 14:11 IST