Author, Burning for Freedom

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Friday, November 23, 2012

Savarkar’s Constitution for India


“The living owe it to those who no longer can speak to tell their story for them.”
Czestaw Mitosz, The Issa Valley: A Novel

Anti-propagandists and detractors have been writing so fast and furiously saying that Savarkar was “communal,” anti-Muslim, and what not that this erroneous, unjust accusation has come to be an accepted fact.

Anyone who will take the trouble to read Savarkar’s words in their original form will see the truth for themselves.

I am presenting below the main points of Savarkar’s guideline for India’s proposed Constitution. You can judge for yourself how very democratic his ideas were. He truly believed in equal rights for all.

Savarkar’s Proposed Guidelines for the
National Constitution of Hindustan

(A) Hindustan from the Indus to the Seas will and must remain as an organic nation and integral centralized state.

(B) The residuary powers shall be vested in the Central Government.

(C) All citizens shall have equal rights and obligations irrespective of caste or creed, race or religion—provided they avow and owe an exclusive and devoted allegiance to the Hindustani State.

(D) The fundamental rights of conscience, of worship, of association etc. will be enjoyed by all citizens alike; whatever restrictions will be imposed on them in the interest of the public peace and order or national emergency will not be based on any religious or racial considerations alone but on common national ground.

(E) “One man, one vote” will be the general rule irrespective of creed, caste, race, or religion.

(F) Representation in the Legislature etc. shall be in proportion to the population of the majority and minorities.

(G) Services shall go by merit alone.

(H) All minorities shall be given effective safeguards to protect their language, religion, culture etc. but none of them shall be allowed to create “a state within a state” or to encroach upon the legitimate rights of the majority.

(I) All minorities may have separate schools to train their children in their own tongue, religion, or culture, and can receive government help also for these, but always in proportion to the taxes they pay into the common exchequer.

(J) In case the constitution is not based on joint electorates and on the unalloyed national principle of one man one vote but is based on the communal basis, then those minorities who wish to have separate electorates or reserve seats will be allowed to have them, but always in proportion to their population and provided that it does not deprive the majority also of an equal right in proportion to its population too.

Mr. J. D. Joglekar has given an interesting “Vignette” in his Veer Savarkar: Father of Hindu Nationalism:

“I started reading books on nationalism in 1942. In the next four years I read considerable literature on that subject. I also read Savarkar’s Hindutva a few times. Therein he has written, “It may be that at some future time the word ‘Hindu’ may come to indicate a citizen of Hindustan and nothing else.’ This clearly shows that Savarkar was ready to include Muslims and Christians in the family of the Hindus. In his concept of nationalism, loyalty to land and secularism had primacy.

In 1946, Savarkar was staying in a hotel in Poona for some much needed rest and change. I met him there. While discussing the above point I said to  him, ‘I do not understand why Hindu Sanghatanists are dubbed communalists?’

          ‘I write for people. I cannot read for them. If my reading would have helped them to understand what I say, I would have done that,’ he said.”


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