VD Savarkar


current vociferous campaign for awarding Savarkar Bharat Ratn by Savarkarites
claims that this Hindutva ‘Veer’ was a ‘rationalist Hindu’ a leader who ‘ended
the practice of Untouchability’, propagated ‘scientific temper’ and died as an
atheist. They also persist in saying that his “outlook was absolutely modern
and scientific and secular”.  

is interesting to note that such protagonists of the Hindutva politics who
declare the modern times as kalyug (state
of moral decay), atheists as scum of the society, Casteism synonymous with
Hinduism and call for scientific temper as foreign conspiracy by Christians and
Communists are glorifying these qualities of Savarkar!

let us compare these claims of Savarkar being a liberal person with the facts
available in the Hindu Mahasabha archives of the times of Savarker.     

Savarker wanted Manusmriti
as constitution of Hindus

How great a rationalist, crusader against
Untouchability and practitioner of scientific temper Savarkar was, can be
understood by knowing the fact that he was a firm believer in Manu’s Codes? He
held Manusmriti as a sacred book for Hindus. As a philosopher and guide
of Hindutva, and the RSS he, without mincing words said:

is that scripture which is most worship-able after Vedas for our Hindu
Nation and which from ancient times has become the basis of our
culture-customs, thought and practice. This book for centuries has codified the
spiritual and divine march of our nation. Even today the rules which are
followed by crores of Hindus in their lives and practice are based on
Manusmriti. Today Manusmriti is Hindu Law. That is fundamental.

[VD Savarkar, ‘Women in Manusmriti’ in Savarkar
(collection of Savarkar’s writings in Hindi), Prabhat, Delhi, vol.
4, p. 415.]

If this dream of
Savarkar of enforcing the Laws of Manu is ever fulfilled, it is undoubtedly
going to be the end of the road for Dalits and women in India. To what
miserable and dehumanized status their lives will be reduced to can be known by
having a glance at the Codes of Manu about them.

Manu’s Laws Concerning

For the sake of the prosperity of the worlds [the
divine one] caused the Brahmana, the Kashtriya, the Vaisya and the Shudra to
proceed from His mouth, His arm, His thighs and His feet. (I/31)

One occupation only the lord prescribed to the
Shudras, to serve meekly these [other] three castes. (I/91)

A Shudra, who insults a high caste man with gross
invective, shall have his tongue cut out for he is of low origin. (VIII/270)

If he [Shudra] arrogantly teaches Brahmanas their
duty, the king shall cause hot oil to be poured into his mouth and into his
ears. (VIII/272)

A low-caste man, who tries to place himself on the
same seat with a man of high caste, shall be branded on his hips and be
banished, or [the king] shall cause his buttocks to be gashed. (VIII/281)

Let [the first part of] a Brahmana’s name [denote
something] auspicious, a Kshatriya’s be connected with power, and a Vaisya’s
with wealth, but a Shudra’s [express something) contemptible. (II/31)

[The second part of] a Brahmana’s [name] shall be [a
word] implying happiness, of a Kshatriya’s [a word] implying protection, of a
Vaisya’s [a term] expressive of thriving, and of a Shudra’s [an expression]
denoting service. (II/32)

service of Brahmanas alone is declared [to be] an excellent occupation for a
Shudra; for whatever else besides this he may perform will bear him no fruit.

The remnants of their food must be given to him, as
well as their old clothes, the refuse of their grain, and their old household
furniture. (X/125)

No collection of wealth must be made by a Shudra, even
though he be able [to do it]; for a Shudra who has acquired wealth, gives pain
to Brahmanas. (X/129)

Manu’s Laws Concerning

By a girl, by a young woman, or even by an aged one,
nothing must be done independently, even in her own house. (V/147)

In childhood a female must be subject to her father,
in youth to her husband, when her lord is dead to her sons; a woman must never
be independent. (V/148)

Her father protects (her) in childhood, her husband
protects (her) in youth, and her sons protect (her) in old age; a woman is
never fit for independence. (IX/3)

must particularly be guarded against evil inclinations,

however, trifling (they
may appear); for, if they are not guarded,

will bring sorrow on two families. (IX/5)

Considering that the highest duty of all castes, even
weak husbands (must) strive to guard their wives. (IX/6)

He who
carefully guards his wife, preserves (the purity of) his offspring, virtuous
conduct, his family, himself, and his (means of acquiring) merit. (IX/7)

As the male is to whom a wife cleaves, even so is the
son whom she brings forth; let him therefore carefully guard his wife, in order
to keep his offspring pure. (IX/9)

No man can completely guard women by force; but they
can be guarded by the employment of the (following) expedients:

Let the (husband) employ his (wife) in the collection
and expenditure of his wealth, in keeping (everything) clean, in (the
fulfillment of) religious duties, in the preparation of his food, and in
looking after the household utensils. (IX/10, 11)

Women do not care for beauty, nor is their attention
fixed on age; (thinking), ‘(It is enough that) he is a man,’ they give
themselves to the handsome and to the ugly. (IX/14)

Through their passion for men, through their mutable
temper, through their natural heartlessness, they become disloyal towards their
husbands, however carefully they may be guarded in this (world). (IX/15)

Knowing their disposition, which the Lord of creatures
laid in them at the creation, to be such, (every) man should most strenuously
exert himself to guard them. (IX/16)

(When creating them) Manu allotted to women (a love of
their) bed, (of their) seat and (of) ornament, impure desires, wrath,
dishonesty, malice, and bad conduct. (IX/17)

[All laws are the
verbatim reproduction from the F. Max Muller (ed.), The Laws of Manu,
Low Price Publication, Delhi, 1996. The bracket after every code carries
chapter number and code number respectively. For instance (I/31) means chapter
I and code number 31 of Manusmriti.]

remained committed to Manu’s diktats throughout his life. While delivering the
presidential address to the 22nd session of the Hindu Mahasabha at Madura in
1940, Savarkar once again underlined the crucial fact of Manu being the law
giver for Hindus and emphasized that once we ‘re-learn the manly lessons’ which
Manu taught ‘Hindu nation shall prove again as unconquerable’. He firmly
believed that once laws given by Manu were enforced ‘our Hindu nation shall prove again as unconquerable and conquering a
race as we proved once…’7

[V. D. Savarkar, Samagra Savarkar Wangmaya: Hindu
Rashtra Darshan
, vol. 6, Maharashtra Prantik Hindusabha, Poona, 1963,

p. 426. ]

Savarkarites emphasize the fact that their mentor
organized community lunches with Untouchables and went to visit their
residential quarters. How serious he was even in these cosmetic reformative
actions can be known by the fact that he did it in his personal capacity ‘without
involving the Hindu Mahasabha organization into social and religions
activities not guaranteed by its constitutional limits…8 [Bold
as in the original text]

  [A. S. Bhide, Vinayak Damodar Savarkar’s
Whirlwind Propaganda:Extracts from the President’s Diary of his Propagandist
Tours Interviews from December 1937 to October 1941, na, Bombay, 1940, p. xi. ]

Savarkar assured Sanatani Hindus who were
opposed to Untouchables’ entry into Hindu temples in 1939 that Hindu Mahasabha,

not introduce or support compulsory Legislature [sic] regarding Temple Entry by
the untouchables etc. in old temples beyond the limit to which the non-Hindus
are allowed by custom as in force today.”

p. 128.]
On June 20, 1941 he once again pledged in the form of a personal assurance that
he would not hurt the sentiments of Sanatani Hindus so far as the issue
of entry of Untouchables in temples was concerned. This time he even promised
not to touch anti-women and anti-Dalit personal laws,

guarantee that the Hindu Maha Sabha [sic] shall never force any
legislations regarding the entry of untouchables in the ancient temples or
compel by law any sacred ancient and moral usage or custom prevailing in those
temples. In general the Mahasabha will not back up any Legislation to thrust
the reforming views on our Sanatani brothers so far as personal law is


Despite all the above facts and many more about the
anti-humanity ideas/practices of Savarkar being available in the archives of
the Hindu Mahasabha itself, he is being glorified as a great rationalist,
secularist and believer in social justice! The reality is that RSS/BJP rulers
want Bharat Ratna for him because Savarkar had total faith in the Manusmriti and hated democratic-secular
Constitution. His liberal ethoses are being manufactured so that vast majority
of Indians who stand for egalitarianism and reject Untouchability change their
opinion about this god of Hindutva which is synonymous with Casteism.

Shamsul Islam

October 24, 2019

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