Though BJP has been upholding their inclination towards Sanatan for years, a few Sanatan gurus have opposed their actions in matter of religion. It is to see if Sanatan would again make a comeback in the political debate.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi waves at supporters as he arrives for a public meeting ahead of Lok Sabha elections, in Salem, Tamil Nadu, Tuesday, March 19, 2024 PTI Photo/R Senthil Kumar

By Abhik Bhattacharya

In September 2023, while addressing the Sanatan Abolition Enclave that was organised by Tamil Nadu Progressive Writers and Artists Association, film actor Udayanidhi Stalin said that Sanatan Dharma cannot be opposed, it needs to be ‘eradicated’. The son of Tamil Nadu CM also compared it with diseases like ‘dengue’ or ‘malaria’.

Though his comments led to political rumblings with Amit Malviya, the head of BJP IT cell saying that the Stalin-scion has called for genocide of 80 per cent Indians, Stalin remained steadfast. Clarifying his comments through a tweet, he said, “I never called for the genocide of people who are following sanatan dharma. Sanatan Dharma is a principle that divides people in the name of caste and religion. Uprooting sanatan dharma is upholding humanity and human equality.”

Some of the INDIA bloc members, however, distanced themselves from Stalin’s comment and said that there is no point in giving fodder for campaign to the ruling party. The debate though didn’t die down totally, it lost its intensity for some time unless the West Bengal BJP recently evoked it again in the context of Lok Sabha polls in Krishnanagar where the TMC has fielded expelled MP Mohua Moitra who has been a very vocal critic of the government. To confront Mitra, the BJP has fielded ‘Rajmata’ Amrita Roy who belongs to erstwhile royal family of Krishnanagar that allegedly supported Mir Jafar against Shiraj-Ud-Daullah during the battle of Plassey.

Referring to this history of the royal family, TMC tweeted, “1757: Maharaja Krishnachandra conspired with Mir Jafar, Jagat Seth & Umi Chand and sold himself out to the British like a spineless traitor… 2024: ‘Rajmata’ Amrita Roy, his family member, has shamelessly embraced the Bangla-birodhi (anti-Bengal) BJP, sealing a pact to once again deceive the people of Bengal… The faces may have changed but their JOMIDARI (zamindari) still persists… They were not trustworthy then, and they sure won’t be now.”

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