Skip to main content

The story of two Flags


The irony in the Prime Minister’s exhortation to Indians to display the national flag in various places may not be lost on those who know the history of India’s freedom struggle. Modi is fundamentally an RSS man and the RSS was bitterly opposed to the national flag and they refused to hoist that flag on 15 Aug 1947. They hoisted the RSS flag instead.

The classical book, Freedom at Midnight, describes that flag-hoisting thus:

 The ceremony being held on a vacant lot in the inland city of Poona… was similar to thousands like it taking place all across the new dominion of India. It was a flag-raising. One thing, however, set the little ritual apart from most of the others. The flag slowly moving up a makeshift staff in the centre of a group of 500 men was not the flag of an independent India. It was an orange triangle, and emblazoned upon it was the symbol which, in a slightly modified form, had terrorized Europe for a decade, the swastika.

Dominique Lapierre and Larry Collins, authors of the above book, go on to say the swastika was on the RSS flag for the same reason as it had been on the banners of Hitler’s Third Reich. It was an Aryan symbol. It came to India during the first waves of the Aryan conquest of India. “The men gathered about it in Poona all belonged to the RSS,” the book goes on, “the para-fascist movement, some of whose members had been assigned the task of assassinating Jinnah along with Mountbatten in Karachi 48 hours earlier. Hindu zealots, they saw themselves as the heirs to those ancient Aryans.”

Who was the leader of this group that hoisted the “para-fascist” flag? Nathuram Godse. At the age of 37, Godse still carried some vestiges of baby fat on his cheeks, “giving him a deceptively young and innocent look.” The newspaper that Godse edited, Hindu Rashtra, left the editorial space blank, “its white columns surrounded by a black band of mourning.”

The RSS mourned India’s Independence. Godse delivered a hate-filled speech after the RSS flag was hoisted on 15 Aug 1947. He condemned Gandhi and his Congress for imposing on India the “horrible sufferings” of the Partition. He led the 500-odd men in front of him to a pledge to sacrifice themselves for the cause of their Motherland.

The book adds that Godse was an utter failure all his life. His failures led him to the RSS whose fundamental hatred holds out a charm to many failures even today. But he wiped out all his failures with one final act of his: the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi. Godse was delivering himself from himself through that act of hatred and vengeance which was intended to look like a historic sacrifice. What are his followers of today delivering themselves from by promoting a flag which their founders detested?

Comments

  1. Hari OM
    Like pirates, nailing their colours to the mast... YAM xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I detest the double standards of these people. I'd rather they stick on to their hatred once and for all. Why this hypocrisy with the national flag now?

      Delete
  2. In Mumbai BMC will be distributing flags to all households. Societies have been asked to state the number of flags needed. I suppose any resident, for whatever reason, fails to display will be noted.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Adventures of Toto as a comic strip

  'The Adventures of Toto' is an amusing story by Ruskin Bond. It is prescribed as a lesson in CBSE's English course for class 9. Maggie asked her students to do a project on some of the lessons and Femi George's work is what I would like to present here. Femi converted the story into a beautiful comic strip. Her work will speak for itself and let me present it below.  Femi George Student of Carmel Public School, Vazhakulam, Kerala Similar post: The Little Girl

ICICI and I

My association with the ICICI Bank goes back by about twenty years when I opened my account at their Saket branch in Delhi. The first thing that struck me about the bank was the suave and deferential ways of the staff which was a stark contrast to what I was used to in the other two banks which I was compelled to associate myself with. The Punjab National Bank which had my salary account was an utter disaster with its rude and listless staff. The State Bank of India which held my PPF account was the pinnacle of inefficiecy. ICICI came as a pleasant and welcome contrast. However, that bank too underwent an evolution in the wrong direction as time went. When the number of clients rose and the workload became heavy, the gentleness of the staff was the first casualty. Nevertheless, the bank remained far superior to the other two. When I shifted to Kerala I transferred my account to the branch in my hometown. Here the staff were exquisite. But I hardly had to visit the branch because I

The Little Girl

The Little Girl is a short story by Katherine Mansfield given in the class 9 English course of NCERT. Maggie gave an assignment to her students based on the story and one of her students, Athena Baby Sabu, presented a brilliant job. She converted the story into a delightful comic strip. Mansfield tells the story of Kezia who is the eponymous little girl. Kezia is scared of her father who wields a lot of control on the entire family. She is punished severely for an unwitting mistake which makes her even more scared of her father. Her grandmother is fond of her and is her emotional succour. The grandmother is away from home one day with Kezia's mother who is hospitalised. Kezia gets her usual nightmare and is terrified. There is no one at home to console her except her father from whom she does not expect any consolation. But the father rises to the occasion and lets the little girl sleep beside him that night. She rests her head on her father's chest and can feel his heart