NEW DELHI: Ram Madhav, BJP general secretary on lien from RSS, has said that RSS believes that India, Pakistan and Bangladesh will one day reunite again not by war but through "popular goodwill", comments that were made public on the night Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a surprise stopover in Lahore for a meeting with Nawaz Sharif.
"The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) still believes that one day these parts, which have for historical reasons separated only 60 years ago, will again, through popular goodwill, come together and Akhand Bharat will be created," he told Al Jazeera, the Doha-based channel.
The BJP general secretary said, "As an RSS member, I also hold on to that view." He, however, clarified, saying, "That does not mean we wage war on any country...we annex any country. Without war, through popular consent, it can happen."
The programme containing Madhav's comments was apparently recorded in London before the prime minister's surprise visit to Pakistan on Christmas day when he met Sharif and discussed ways of improving ties between the two countries. The programme was aired late last night.
Madhav, an RSS pracharak himself, said, India is "a land where a particular way of life, a particular culture or civilisation, is practised."
"We call it Hindu - do you have any objection? India has one culture. We are one culture, one people, one nation," he told the channel.
Madhav said the RSS ideology is for the supremacy of India and the organisation is neither "fascist" nor "aggressive".
On the controversy over returning of awards by writers and intellectuals, he said, a small number of people do not represent the entire country's views and there were a very large number of intellectuals who did not support this award.
Madhav said they were doing it "to defame the government and in turn to defame the image of India" and termed as "wrong" their method of protest.