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Lost Years of the RSS

Lost Years of the RSS

First Edition
  • Sanjeev Kelkar - Ex-Medical Director, Novo Nordisk Education Foundation
Critical Acclaim

May 2011 | 392 pages | SAGE India

Lost Years of the RSS is a historical analysis of the events that have shaped the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) in its 85 years of existence. Written from an insider's perspective, this in-depth work critically analyzes the major turning points in the history of RSS from the viewpoint of both a follower and an opponent, while digging deep into its socio-political history.

Beginning with the political ethnography of the RSS, the book charts the organization's growth over time—from the Partition, the first ban, the Golwalkar and Deoras periods, the demolition of Babri Masjid, to the present, when the original principles of the Sangh have been forgotten, leading to the current decadence within the organization.

The author concludes with suggestions for a way forward for the RSS, wherein the lessons learned from the past can be put to use and the original values can be reinstated. At the heart of the book is the author's implicit desire to contradict the current media representations of the Sangh and portray the RSS as what it was actually meant to be.

Foreword Kumar Ketkar
Original Design of the RSS: An Analysis

Political Ethnography of the RSS

Other Dominant Tendencies of the Golwalkar Era

Withdrawal, Return and Ascent of Deoras

The Emergency and Post-Emergency

The BJP, the Parivar and Deoras: 1980-85

Catapulting the Hindu to the Centre Stage

Road to Political Power and Its Aftermath

The Unipolar World and the RSS' Response

The Future, If Any

The New Hindutva (Violent) Forces
Epilogue: The Problem of Ideologies

Postscript: Ayodhya Judgement and Bihar Assembly Elections

Whatever the future, given the RSS’ multi-layered history, this was a story waiting to be told. Mr Kelkar’s intention may be to analyse the history of the RSS as a believer as well as an opponent. But objectivism is easier said than achieved. In Mr Kelkar’s case, the opponent’s viewpoint resembles that of a mother, bitterly disappointed in her child but unrelenting in her support and affection nonetheless. So expect a historical account of a “misunderstood” organization and a loyalist’s take on the way forward.

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ISBN: 9788132105909

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