Skip to main content

Modi was product of Congress, was anti-RSS: Gujarat's top Padma Shree supporter "revealed" this in 1997 book

By Our Representative
In a revelation that is causing major embarrassment to a person who is now rated highly by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a historian, journalist and writer, Vishu Pandya once referred to Modi as "a strong opponent of the Sangh Parivar and a member of the Congress Seva Dal during his college days."
In a book he authored in 1997, Pandya -- who joined then dissident BJP leader Shankarsinh Vaghela's newly-formed Rasthiya Janata Party in 1996 along with tens of rebel BJP MLAs -- revealed this quoting a leaflet, written by Mafatlal Patel, estranged husband of Modi protege and ex-Gujarat CM Anandiben Patel.
Screenshot from the leaflet
printed in the book
Significantly, Pandya quoted Patel's leaflet as a major example to point towards how the rebellion against the ruling BJP built up and a third political force in Gujarat was taking roots under Vaghela.
Referring to the leaflet (called "Gujarat Ki Sacchai Kya Hai" or What is the Truth of Gujarat), Pandya said in his book -- titled "Vartaman Gujarat: Triji Shakti no Suryoday" (Contemporary Gujarat: Rise of the Third Force) -- it was distributed at the BJP's national meet in Mumbai, and "created a major flutter", so much so that then party strongman Pramod Mahajan asked its immediate confiscation.
Said Pandya, praising the political significance of the leaflet, "Its contents were widely reported in national media. Reporters made every effort to get its copy. Disciplinary action was sought against the BJP MP who distributed the leaflet at the national meet -- Somabhai Patel."
The leaflet, quoted by Pandya, also said: "Around 1970, Jan Sangh (now BJP) general secretary Vasantrao Gajendragadkar came to the city (Ahmedabad) and came in contact with the party worker Narendra Modi and said the latter's thinking and views were not in consonance with the party's and that he should not continue in the party."
The book
Elsewhere, the leaflet pointed towards how Modi acted as "extra-constitutional authority" in Keshubhai Patel's government in 1995 -- he would "take part in the Cabinet meetings in complete violation of the Constitution."
While Pandya, two decades later, has sought to "trash" the contents of the leaflet, saying that the claims were "mentioned in a letter" (sic! it was a leaflet) that was used as a reference in his book, a senior journalist, Hari Desai, wonders in a blog why Pandya is so upset.
Now close to Modi, Pandya is known to have given major inputs to him on Gujarat's militant nationalist Shyamji Krishna Varma, a freedom fighter who spent his last days in Europe. Modi made a major spectacle out of Varma's "contributions", going so far as to Geneva to bring back his ashes, criticising the Congress for forgetting " revolutionaries" like him.
Desai, who has released the relevant portions of Pandya's about 300 page book in his blog, says, "Pandya has been an RSS man for years. He was conferred the Padmashri by Modi-led Centre this year and is currently serving as President of the Gujarat Sahitya Akademi . Pandya had written the book in 1997 as a tribute to Shankarsinh Vaghela."
Hari Desai
Insisting that there is little reason to doubt what Pandya has referred to when "Modi is revealed as a product of Congress Seva Dal and an anti-RSS during his college days by his close associate in a book published by him", Desai calls Pandya "a celebrated historian of Gujarat" and "none has denied so far since the book is very much available today."
Interstingly, Pandya, who once edited an RSS mouthpiece "Sadhana", was praised in 2014, among others, by a People's Union of Civil Liberties (Gujarat) book for his "fearless" journalism. More recently, the Gujarat Media Club felicitated him at its annual meet for his "contributions".

Comments

TRENDING

India under Modi among top 10 autocratizing nations, on verge of 'losing' democracy status

By Rajiv Shah
A new report, prepared by a top Swedish institute studying liberal democracy, has observed that there has been a sharp “dive in press freedom along with increasing repression of civil society in India associated with the current Hindu-nationalist regime of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.” The report places India among the top 10 countries that “have autocratized the most”. Other countries that have been identified for rolling towards autocracy are -- Hungary, Turkey, Poland, Serbia, Brazil, Mali, Thailand, Nicaragua and Zambia.

Savarkar 'criminally betrayed' Netaji and his INA by siding with the British rulers

By Shamsul Islam*
RSS-BJP rulers of India have been trying to show off as great fans of Netaji. But Indians must know what role ideological parents of today's RSS/BJP played against Netaji and Indian National Army (INA). The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS which always had prominent lawyers on their rolls made no attempt to defend the INA accused at Red Fort trials.

Border conflict? RBI nod India's 'brotherly' help to China internationalise its currency

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*
In the middle of a global pandemic, China started an unprovoked border conflict with India. It unraveled trust deficit and ties between the two neighbours. As thousands of Chinese troops tried occupying Indian territory, the Narendra Modi-led BJP government directs the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to allow the Bank of China to start regular banking services in India. The Bank of China will now operate in India like any other commercial banks.

RSS supremo Deoras 'supported' Emergency, but Indira, Sanjay Gandhi 'didn't respond'

By Shamsul Islam*
National Emergency was imposed on the country by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on June 25-26, 1975, and it lasted for 19 months. This period is considered as ''dark times' for Indian democratic polity. Indira Gandhi claimed that due to Jaiprakash Narayan's call to the armed forces to disobey the 'illegal' orders of Congress rulers had created a situation of anarchy and there was danger to the existence of Indian Republic so there was no alternative but to impose Emergency under article 352 of the Constitution.

Letter to friends, mentors: Coming together of class, communal, corona viruses 'scary'

By Prof (Dr) Mansee Bal Bhargava*
COVID greetings from Ahmedabad to dear mentors and friends from around the world…
I hope you are keeping well and taking care of yourself besides caring for the people around you. I’m writing to learn how is the science and the society coping with the prevention and cure of the pandemic. I’m also writing to share the state of the corona virus that is further complicated with the long-standing class and communal viruses.

Clean chit to British rulers, Muslim League? Karnataka to have Veer Savarkar flyovers

By Shamsul Islam*
The BJP government of Karnataka led by BS Yediyurappa is going to honour Hindutva icon VD Savarkar by naming two of the newly built major flyovers in Bangalore and Mangalore after him. There was a huge uproar against this decision of the RSS-BJP government as many pro-Kannada organisations with opposition parties and liberal-secular organizations questioned the logic to ignore so many freedom fighters, social reformers and others from within the state.

Hurried nod to Western Ghat projects: 16 lakh Goans' water security 'jeopardised'

Counterview Desk
Taking strong exception to "virtual clearances" to eco-sensitive projects in the Western Ghats, the National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM) in a statement has said urged for a review of the four-lane highway, 400 KV transmission line and double tracking of the railway line through the Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife Sanctuary and Mollem National Park in Goa.

Disturbing signal? Reliance 'shifting focus' away from Indian petrochemical sector

By NS Venkataraman*
Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), a large Indian company, has expanded and grown in a spectacular manner during the last few decades, like of which no industrial group in India has performed before. RIL is now involved in multi various activities relating to petroleum refineries, petrochemicals, oil and gas exploration, coal bed methane, life sciences, retail business, communication network, (Jio platform) media/entertainment etc.

Case for nationalising India's healthcare system amidst 'strong' private control

Counterview Desk
A draft discussion note, prepared by Dr Maya Valecha, a Gujarat-based gynecologist and activist, sent to the People's Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) as also a large number of activists, academics and professionals as an email alert, is all set to create a flutter among policy experts for its strong insistence on nationalizing India’s healthcare system.