Vishwa Hindu Parishad: Early days
In 1964, when the vishwa Hindu Parishad came into existence because of the deep foresight of Sri Guruji and the inspiration and support received form Swami Chinmayananda who happened to be another mentor of this writer from his young days, he dedicated himself heart and soul to the mission and became a fulltime worker of the cause. However, he was involved in the activities of the Central Chinmaya Mission Trust also as a member of the Advisory Board. He attended one of the meetings of the board held in the famous Trippunithura Palace at Ernakulam, sometime before the VHP organized its first massive conference of the Parishad at Prayag on the occasion of Kumbh Mela in 1966. Someone in the meeting raised a question why the entire work of organizing the VHP conference was left RSS when many other institutions including the Mission were involved in it. Swami Chinmayananda shot a straightforward a spontaneous reply: “Because, the Swayamsevaks are under the direct guidance of Sri Guruji. What ten of our mission members could do in ten hours, a Swayamsevak of the Sangh could do it in one hour. The Swayamsevaks are well trained, disciplined, organized and they know the technique of organizing such a mammoth gathering. Why don’t you leave it to them? We have other roles to play.” Such was the confidence of the Swamiji in Sri Guruji’s command and leadership. This writer, who had earned the nick-name ‘Danda’ from the Swami for often being seen in Sangh Ganavesh and holding Danda in hand, felt a little proud by the reply of the Swamiji.
Sadhus and sants from every nook and corner of the country had gathered for the World Hindu Conference at Prayag. Thousands of Swayamsevaks were engaged day and night in arranging accommodation and other comforts for the visiting dignitaries and about three lakhs of participants in the massive conference. This writer, as a young worker, was running up and down, often aspiring to get into close proximity of the Sadhus and Sants. A meeting of the important leaders of the constituent organizations in the Parishad was taking place in the presence of Sri Guruji and Swami Chinmayananda. The general Secretary of the Parishad, Sri S. S. Apte, presented a copy of the draft resolutions before them and remarked that Sri Guruji had gone through all of them and made necessary corrections and therefore they could be presented in the conference as such. Suddenly a voice of dissent was heard and that was from Swami Chinmayananda who said, it was not enough that Sri Guruji approves of them, but every leader of the constituent organization must necessarily go through them before they are presented. Sri Guruji spontaneously supported the Swamiji saying that he whole-heartedly seconded the stand of the Swamiji, because that was the way to do the thing.
In the RSS, the principle of ‘Ekachaalukaanuvartitwa’- implicit obedience to the commands of the head- is practiced because it is an organization moulded in the form a disciplined army. Once the head, in whom the rank and cadre place absolute faith, takes a decision, no one questions that. Even in the Sanghasthan, when the Mukhay shikshak, even if he be a small boy in his teens, say ‘Daksha’ – Attention – all come to attention, and no one has the choice to ‘stand at ease’, even if he be a dignitary attending the Shaka. However, when it is the question of organizations in the Sangh Parivar, that function in a democratic manner, Sri Guruji insisted that consensus and consent of all the constituents must be obtained while taking important decisions.