Hindu Vivek Kendra

2. Introduction

2.1 We do not intend to make a response to a report entitled "The Foreign Exchange of Hate - IDRF and the American funding of Hindutva" (referred to as Report in the rest of this essay). A response is a rebuttal of the information provided. This is done only when the information has some modicum of validation, and based on a reasonable level of truth. What we intend to do, for two reasons, is to analyse the Report, along with other statements made by the authors of the Report prior and subsequent to its public relase. The first is that anyone who makes an accusation has to first prove it with rigorous data and proper interpretation. It is not for the accused to prove his/her innocence, but for the accuser to prove the guilt of the accused.

2.2 The second reason is that it is well known that the work done by India Development Relief Fund (IDRF) in mobilising resources from the Indian Diaspora is legendary. In some ways, it appears that the authors of the Report feel jealous about this positive work being done, since they themselves have nothing to show about their contribution. The work done by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (Sangh), and its affiliates, is also legendary. It is not for nothing that an organisation, started in 1925, with active government opposition for most of its life (having been banned three times in the post-Independence period), is today the largest Non-Government Organisation (NGO) in the world.

2.3 Almost the whole of the so-called intellectual class in India has been actively opposing the Sangh, and has made serious attempts to spread venom against it. Despite this, the support for the Sangh is continuously increasing in all spheres of the society. If the Sangh is the devil that the Report seeks to project, it would be really insulting the intellectual of the masses that they will allow such a large presence amongst its midst. Yes, you can fool some of the people all the time. But, surely 77 years is quite a long time to fool so many millions.

2.4 So, we do not think it is necessary to defend either the IDRF or the Sangh. The activities of the IDRF and the Sangh are above board. The people of the country have given their verdict on them a long time ago.

2.7 The second response started with the following two paragraphs:

· "In setting out in its task to report on the 'ordeal by fire in the killing fields of Gujarat', the Editors Guild Team set out in its task in the standard Marxist methodology. As Nikolay Valentinov (in "Encounters with Lenin") recounts Lenin telling him, "Plekhanov once said to me about a critic of Marxism (I've forgotten his name), 'First let us stick the convict's badge on him, and then after that we will examine his case.' And I think that we must 'stick the convict's badge' on anyone and everyone who tries to undermine Marxism, even if we do not go on to examine his case. That's how every sound revolutionary should react."

· "The Editors Guild Team put the label of a convict on the Gujarati language media, and then went about the task of evaluating its report. We would like to first discuss the ideology of the English media in India to enable us to put forward our analysis of the report."

2.8 The Report follows the same traditions as the earlier ones. Those who go under the rubric of secular intellectuals have opened up yet another front in their programme of sowing confusion in the society. Their objective is not to enlighten but to indulge in negativism that they seem to have made a special feature in their character.

2.9 They have no intention to tell the truth, but seek to propagate their own agenda. If in the process the society gets hurt, they think it is a small price to pay. This they have done this in the past, and we are sure that they will do so in the future. So, to understand the primary objective of the Report, the background of the persons involved in the publication should be understood.

2.10 The Report gives names of seven persons who have contributed to its preparation. They are: Girish Agarwal, Angana Chatterji, Shalini Gera, Biju Mathew, Ali Mir, S Ravi Raja and Elahe Heptullah, who we have defined as authors of the Report. (It is not clear if they are the authors because their contribution has been acknowledged as giving 'assistance in locating and compiling the material used in this report'.) Since it was Mathew who released the Report in India in a press conference in Delhi on November 20, 2002, only his background is given.

2.11 Simultaneously, it is necessary to go into the background of one of the publishers, namely Sabrang.