Before opening this post, you might have thought that I was trying to put down the percentage of Hindus in India as 80 or 81 % as per the Government statistics.
No, not at all! That doesn't serve my purpose here. My purpose is to make people aware of so much confusion regarding the term Hindu. I have gone through Rajnathji's speech in which he mentioned Supreme Court judgement on the term Hindutva and of course Hindu term is also related to it. I too posted my own interpretion from what I have been hearing and reading about Hindutva in a separate post. The link is given below.
But let us go with what the common man in India and the world understands. The conventional understanding is that Hindus belong to religion "Hinduism" and they pray in temples and celebrate certain festivals like Durga Puja, Deepavali etc. It is their percentage that counts as percentage of Hindus for the general public. The popular opinion about the BJP was that the party is trying to unite this population against others to grab power and hence the term polarisation has come up.
But is it practically possible? Let us analyse what that 80% constitute of? As per records many of them are Hindus, but let us classify some of the people in this 80% group.
1. People who feel inferior to say that they read Ramayana or Mahabharata.
2. People who say that they do not know much about their neighboring states in India, but can talk about each state in the USA.
3. People who laugh at the traditional music and dance of India, but flock to look at the pop stars from outside.
4. People who blame the traditional food in India and even ridicule the food habits of a neighboring state, but stands in a long queue in hot sun to grab a burger from McDonalds even if a AC restaurant with Indian food has seats available adjacent to the McDonalds.
5. People who make fun of Swamijis and Saints in India, but flock to see Benny Hinn type of people even bearing traffic jams.
6. People who never visit a neighboring historic place in India, but go to some junk tourist destinations in western countries and keep praising those as the best and ridicule India without even exploring it.
7. People who keep praising the west for cleanliness and still throw garbage shamelessly on the roads instead of using dust bins.
8. People who take pride in buying products in western countries when the same product is available in India.
9. People who use the USA or other western powers as yardstick to assess India without assessing whether the same is good or bad. Eg.,Gay rights issue.
If I keep writing, the list will go on. What should the BJP do to change such mindsets? BJP should realise that none of these people will vote for the party. They feel inferior to talk about a "communal" party like the BJP. If some serious and strategic action is not taken, the day will not be far away when the Indian culture will be relegated to a museum. But the tactics of militant organisations like Bajrang Dal will only be counter productive. That makes people more rigid. If we exclude people with all the above mentioned traits from the count of Hindus, what will be the percentage of Hindus in the country? No one has an answer, but we can be sure that it is low and dwindling and may become miniscule within a short period of time. We need an urgent solution to prevent the dwindling of such population.
I do not know the solution, but know that a solution is required. May be a party like BJP can provide that soft solution that can bring about a cultural renaissance in India.