What changes does BJP have to make within so that it is accepted by all Indians and be a better party… by @balajivis
Answer by Balaji Viswanathan:
BJP and RSS have to start strategically thinking for India, rather than thinking merely from a Hindu prism. Hinduism can be strong only when India is strong.
Move to an Upanishadic/Vedantic focus. One of the greatest elements of Hinduism is the Upanishads and that is what BJP/RSS should keep their center on. Doing the good thing is also the most pragmatic thing for them.
Strategy 1: Asato mā sadgamaya [fight ignorance within]
The biggest threat for Hinduism is the caste based discrimination. This is how evangelism thrives in India. The sooner we destroy it, the better it is for Hinduism and India. Destroying untouchability is not only a good thing for India, but also a good thing for BJP and RSS. Totally digest Swami Vivekananda's teachings for this fight.
RSS is now vacillating on the caste system. That only gives more room for caste based parties – who are their primary opponents. Castes are not necessarily bad, but systematically arranging them by birth is, in the same way races are not bad, but racism is.
Clearly spell out birth based discrimination as evil and make an apology to the Dalits and be the torchbearer in the fight against untouchability. Show the nation how you can use your deep organizational skills to fight the problem. No other group is capable of that.
RSS could declare a whole year as "destroying untouchability" year and could unleash power on those who attack Dalits. Just one project for that year and get all pracharaks to focus that singular problem. Close out all distractions and focus only on those regions and those people who commit this violence. See what happens to your image and Hinduism's image.
Strategy 2: Tamasomā jyotir gamaya [be the guiding light]
India has a dearth of good parties. Congress and CPI (M) nearly dead. AAP's honeymoon is over. Regional parties are a mixed bag. India needs BJP more than ever. Be the shining light for India. Keep the fight on academia and other things later. Put full focus on fixing the economy and bringing clean politics. Always imagine, if Lord Ram were ruling now, what would be His priorities? Will His fight be for temples and against actors?
Indian economy is the only major economy in the world to be shining now and it is time BJP doesn't get distracted from that. Forget about the naysayers and the "intolerance dramatists" and be sure to get all energies behind that one thing. The government should ignore all media opinions about them.
Strategy 3: Mrityormāamritam gamaya [keep an immortal image]
A lot of times the right wing is warring the media and academia. This is short-sighted. You can ask the left and other parties and they will also claim that the media is against them. Learn to work the media rather than work against it. Same for the academia. There are enough right wingers in the academia if you only they are patient to tap into the pool. Don't get on the wrong side of the writers of history.
Coach your leaders on media interaction. The only difference between a liberal and a conservative leader, is that a liberal is suave enough to hide his bigotry. Like everyone else we have to stop being bigots. Start from saying only the right things and slowly even the actions become right.
Strategy 4: Oṁ śhānti śhānti śhāntiḥ [Peace! Peace! Peace!]
Remember, India can only be strong if it is peaceful. As the majority community we have the most to lose if India is thought of as a hell. And if India is a shining star of the world, we will be too. For that to happen, thoroughly discipline the cadre and denounce those groups that attack the populace [say the ones creating trouble during Valentine's Day].
One place RSS/BJP have to focus very strongly on is the Northeast. Fight for their interests and satisfy their needs [including connections with Myanmar and Bangladesh]. Consider even shifting your headquarters from Nagpur and putting a NE face at the top leadership.
The next stop should be Tamil Nadu & Kerala. If you can win these NE & extreme south – you can win any part of India. Because, winning these regions would force you to tone down many of the aggressive posturing.
This is not all some feel-good things. These things are also pragmatic and needed for the long term survival of the movement.