Togadia links cultural unity to economic development

“How can the homecoming of a few people in Telangana affect development in Bihar?” asked  Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) chief Praveen Togadia on Monday.

Addressing mediapersons on the sidelines of the two-day joint meeting of the central board of trustees and management committee, Togadia presented his argument in favour of the “ghar waapsi” of Hindus who had embraced other religions.

“There are no ill-effects of re-conversion, as economic development is possible only after there is cultural unity in the nation. In fact, this will hasten development. Culture is the driving force of economic development,” he said.

Quoting a Supreme Court verdict that Hinduism is a way of life, he said if a person adopts the Western, Chinese or Japanese way of life, it can not be called religious conversion.

Similarly, if a group adopts the Hindu way of life, it can not be called conversion, he argued. 

Togadia said “ghar waapsi” had been going on in the country for seven centuries, and hence it was nothing new. He also denied opposition from Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the issue, and refused to comment on Modi’s performance, saying: “The VHP is not a rating agency”.

Appealing to all Muslims and Christians in India to return to their “original faith”, Togadia said over the centuries, Hindus were converted either through persecution or allurement. Attributing division of the country to unabated conversion of Hindus, he said the VHP has taken an oath not to allow conversion of Hindus any more.
Togadia said the Constitution of India, too, is against conversions through its observations in 1977.

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