India should aim to be more powerful than China: Mohan Bhagwat


Taking a long-range view, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat has said that India should aim to grow bigger than China in terms of “shakti and vypati” (power and scope) to counter China’s expansionist designs. Addressing the annual Vijayadashami rally of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) on October 25, Mr Bhagwat said that India needs to be militarily better prepared against China.The number of participants at this year’s event was restricted to only 50 swayamsevaks (volunteers) due to the COVID-19 guidelines. The septuagenarian leader said that many countries are now standing up to China and it was “shocked at India’s response to its intrusion. India needs to grow bigger in power and scope than china.”

India’s benevolence isn’t a weakness

“China encroached on our borders amid the pandemic,” and the world knows the expansionist nature of that country, he said, citing examples of Taiwan and Vietnam, which he claimed have been the victims of its colonialist designs. “We intend to be friendly with all. This is our nature. But mistaking our benevolence for weakness and attempts to disintegrate or weaken us by sheer brute force is unacceptable. Our detractors must know this by now,” he said.The RSS ideologue stressed that the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) is not against any particular religious community, but “some people misled our Muslim brothers” claiming it was aimed at restricting their population. Before the issue could be discussed further, the focus shifted on coronavirus, he said. “The communal flare in minds of a few people stayed in their minds only. Coronavirus overshadowed all other topics,” he added.

COVID-19 is an eye-opener

“We need not fear coronavirus, but should be alert and cautious. We cannot stop living. Coronavirus is spreading but fatalities are less. Due to the pandemic, we have started learning the importance of hygiene, cleanliness, environment, family values all over again,” he said.“Coronavirus has given rise to challenges of unemployment. Many lost jobs and labourers are now returning to cities. But the jobs may not be there. The challenge is to create employment opportunities in different places,” he said.

Mr Bhagwat said before the pandemic, several issues that were in the public discourse took a backseat. “Article 370 was abrogated, the country accepted the Supreme Court verdict on Ram temple with patience and understanding,” he said.“There was opposition to CAA claiming it was being used to check the Muslim population in the country. In fact, no Indian citizen was threatened due to CAA. Before any step could be taken to resolve the issue, the coronavirus pandemic happened,” the RSS leader said.


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