RSS is secular, says Jamaat leader

via Pioneer News Service | Kochi published on August 1, 2006

The recent remarks of a Jamaat-e-Islami leader hailing the Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh as a ‘secular outfit having a national outlook’ and describing the CPI(M) as an intolerant political party have spearheaded fresh controversy. Observers see this move as a retreat of Jamaat-e-Islami from the left forces.

The Jamaat had joined hands with the Left Democratic Front in the recently concluded Assembly elections, to ‘save the minorities from the Hindu fanatic organisations like the RSS’.

In an article, C Dawood, a State committee member of the Students Islamic Organisation (SIO), the student wing of Jamaat, has also criticised the CPI(M) as the ‘most intolerant’ political party in the country.

The article appeared in the latest issue of Madhyamam, a weekly published by the Noble Charitable Trust, a charitable organisation, mooted by the Jamaat-e-Islami Hind. The article has been written as a reply to another article penned by Marxist writer KEN Kunjahammed, appeared in Deshabhimani, the mouthpiece of the CPI(M). The article begins with a note that ‘this is a reaction of a Muslim fundamentalist’. The SIO leader observes that in history, secularism has created more bloodshed than the religious organisations.

“Religion has not created any Paul Pot, Joseph Stalin or Anwar Hoja, they were produced in the ‘kitchen’ of Communism”. In the remaining part, he says that intolerance has been synonymous with the Communists. The CPI(M) has been intolerant even to their left allies, and it was the Marxists who contributed a word ‘party village’ to the dictionary.

He says that secularism is a western concept, evolved through another idea of nationalism. The Jamaat leader goes on to say that in this aspect, the RSS could be called a secular outfit having a national outlook. A left fellow traveller observed that these remarks have brought out the real face of Jamaat-e-Islami. “Even though they profess anti-imperialism and anti-globalisation slogans and align with the left in the agitations against the ill effects of globalisation, their ultimate basis is anti-national,” he said. Responding to this, a prominent Sunni leader said this should be viewed as an attempt to paint the face of a liberal muslim.

“They are deliberately trying to renounce the image of a ‘Muslim fundamentalist. But, however, they could not easily forswear the ideals of their founder Moulana Moudoodi, who stood for an Islamic nation,” he said.

While, a prominent Mujahid leader said that the existence of Jamaat-e-Islami was based on Islamic State and by supporting RSS, they have denounced it.

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