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The Political Economy of Hindutvas Rise to Prominence Anja Kovacs Room 2.73 15 March 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "The Political Economy of Hindutvas Rise to Prominence Anja Kovacs Room 2.73 15 March 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Political Economy of Hindutvas Rise to Prominence Anja Kovacs Room March 2007

2 The Ram Janmabhoomi campaign Babri Masjid (Babars Mosque) - Ayodhya

3 Main Proponents Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)

4 Main Proponents

5 Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP)

6 Main Proponents

7 Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) …. = Sangh Parivar (Sangh Family)

8 What is Hindutva? Aim: to turn India into a Hindu country - Hindu race is united by common traditions, experiences and memories of glory and disaster - Muslims are considered foreign troublemakers and barbarian invaders

9 What is Hindutva? The destruction of the Babri Masjid 6 December 1992

10 What is Hindutva? Hindutva = Hindu-ness = the form of Hindu nationalism that emphasises the supposed cultural essence of the Hindu nation, backed up by the myth of the Muslim as foreign invader.

11 What is Hindutva? Riots (Pogrom?) in Gujarat (2002) people killed people shifted to relief camps people displaced

12 The Political Economy of Hindutva A shared cultural essence: excludes the Muslim community from the nation erases from view the power relations that continue to exist among Hindus Main supporters: upper caste, middle class

13 The Political Economy of Hindutva Middle class? National Council for Applied Economic Research ( – urban households): 16%: scooter 21%: colour TV 25%: refrigerator National Sample Survey Organisation ( – urban households): 33 %: PCC of £50 for family of five 8%: PCC of £95 for family of five

14 The Political Economy of Hindutva Middle class : Petty bourgeoisie Middle ranks of professions and civil service White-collar employees in private sector Rich farmers and peasants Upper caste: brahmin – kshatriya – vaishya (not: sudra – dalit)

15 The Political Economy of Hindutva Vedas: varnas derived from Purusha Brahmin: head Kshatriya: arms Vaishya: thighs Shudra: feet Hindu people are Virat Purusha (Almighty Incarnate)

16 The Political Economy of Hindutva A Changing India, from the 1960s onwards: failure of the Nehruvian model and growing disrepute of the Congress party rise of the Other Backward Castes (OBCs) Mandal Report Liberalisation and globalisation

17 The Political Economy of Hindutva Liberalisation and globalisation: connections with Hindutva disinterest in the well-being of the poor authoritarianism and brutalisation of culture and politics liberalisation and Indias Great Power Ambitions


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