When the Madhya Pradesh government under Shivraj Singh Chauhan proposed to induct parts of the Bhagawad Gita in the syllabus of students of Classes 1 and 2 in Islamic schools last week, the outrage and protests about ‘saffronisation of education’ that followed could have been easily predicted. What ceases to amaze is that with less than nine months left for general elections, how the BJP is clinging on to and strengthening its Hinduness — first with Amit Shah’s statement that the party will build the Ram temple in Ayodhya, then with Narendra Modi’s claim that he is a Hindu Nationalist and now this.
If the BJP simply focussed on systematic mis-governance and rampant corruption of the UPA government and communicated that to the electorate, it would be enough. By indulging in ‘Hinduness’ in ways that seem aggressive, even undemocratic, it is losing the plot. Or maybe all of us analysts are wrong and it is really the hot issues of religion, caste and divisions that win elections, not cold facts.