Neelu Ranjan, CNN-IBN Monday , May 08, 2006 at 12:36
New Delhi: A book on the history of Jana Sangh has put the BJP in a bind.
The book claims the Jana Sangh was founded to counter Muslims. It also targets Muslims and Mahatma Gandhi liberally and its parent organisation RSS is not amused.
The book is called History of Bhartiya Jana Sangh and its significance can be gauged from the fact that Lal Krishna Advani has written the preface of the book.
Advani, in fact states that the BJP is a significant political force.
That makes it accountable to the public, students, intellectuals and history at large and that is also why an official document which mirrors the growth of the party is important.
But what makes the book controversial is the fact that Muslims and even Mahatma Gandhi have been targetted.
The book hints that the Jana Sangh and the RSS were founded as a reaction to the growing fear of the Muslim community in India.
However, the foundrer of the Jana Sangh, Balraj Madhok flatly denies this.
"The Jana Sangh was formed because the country needed an alternative to the Congress party and not to oppose Muslims in India. According to the British model of democracy that we have adopted, there should be at least two parties with different ideologies in the country," says he.
The Sangh has expressed serious objections over the book.
Sources in the Sangh say that with the circulation of this official document, the charges on BJP and Sangh of being a communal party will be proved true.
BJP and Sangh leader, Bhai Mahavir says, "If the book is released, it will be an injustice to the Sangh and those who established it."
RSS's opposition to the book makes matters worse for the BJP.
With the book already in print, the BJP stands red faced, not knowing whether to stand by its so called official document or not.
(With inputs from Avneet Bhatia)