RSS set to pass a resolution on protection of languages, dialects at annual meet
The timing of the announcement are perceived by political analysts as an indication of the RSS’s concerted effort to shed its image and that of its political protégé, the BJP of being entities with clout limited to the Hindi heartland that hardsell Hindi as the preferred language.india Updated: Mar 10, 2018 09:07 IST
The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) at the ongoing annual meeting of its highest decision making body in New Delhi is set to pass a resolution on preservation of Indian languages and dialects that are fading away. The announcement according to a senior functionary is the organisation’s answer to the critics and opponents who have accused the Sangh of fostering the idea of one language and homogeneity of culture.
On Friday, the inaugural day of its three-day Akhil Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha, Krishna Gopal, a joint general secretary of the Sangh said there are many ‘bolis and bhashas’ (dialects and languages) that are dying in the absence of attention; and the RSS wants to step up efforts to preserve these.
The import and the timing of the announcement are perceived by political analysts as an indication of the RSS’s concerted effort to shed its image and that of its political protégé, the BJP of being entities with clout limited to the Hindi heartland that hardsell Hindi as the preferred language.
It comes at a time, when the BJP cadre is preparing for an electoral battle in Karnataka and trying to gain a foothold in states such as Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh where regional issues including language are an overriding concern.
Will the Sangh’s focus on recognising regional languages impact the BJP’s electoral fortunes?
“They are factually correct that many languages are dying. But if the government were to take any steps to preserve languages, based on this resolution, it have a political impact, which may not mean the vote share going up by 2-3%, but it will give the party more legitimacy in the eyes of the common people,” Sanjay Kumar of the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies said.
The stress on preservation of languages is an indicator of the Sangh’s focus on reaching out to diverse linguistic groups with a larger purpose of helping its politic protégé, the BJP, reinforce its pan India identity, Kumar said.
“The idea of regional languages overlaps with the outreach that the Sangh carries out and that connect will help the BJP.”
A senior functionary of the RSS, however said, the decision does not have a political undertone and contrary to perceptions that the Sangh is Hindi-centric, it builds on local customs and culture, which in turn allows it to build bridges with communities.
First Published: Mar 09, 2018 23:41 IST