The VHP is a most fascinating organisation – in many ways, even more than the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. They believe they are enforcers of pure Hinduism, a ginger group in the Sangh family that steers it back to the path of the pure when it strays. The BJP, especially in states where it is in power, secretly considers them a nuisance, and there is evidence to suggest this especially in Gujarat where senior VHP leader Pravin Togadia was pressured so much that he had to virtually shut shop. And to think there was a time when VHP volunteers used to draw a salary from the government of Gujarat!
The VHP's job is to knit together the family of the Hindu religious leaders, promote this above caste and organise the moral think tank. In practise, this rarely happens, because the likes of Narendra Modi are around.
Modi wound up the business of rent-seekers clothed in bhagva vastra (saffron clothes) in Gujarat because he saw them as being anti-business. Although VHP chief Ashok Singhal has been deferential to Modi, and Togadia no longer brags that Modi's reins “are in our hands”, the VHP both admires and loathes Modi.
Here are some messages from VHP sympathisers that are out there in ether, suggesting there is a lot of ferment about Modi's persona. I am reproducing them here for those who might like to read them:
Fact about Narendra Modi: He claims that he is 'himmat wala' but his behaviour is cowardly. For the last two days he has gone into hiding leaving his party spokespersons squirming on TV trying to justify his paap of choosing toilets over temples. Mard ko dard nahin hota hai. Lekin Narendra Modi ko dard bhi hota hai aur dar bhi lagta hai.
Fact about Narendra Modi: He demolished hundreds of temples in Gujarat as Chief Minister. He can demolish a devalaya to build a shauchalaya? Anyone can shoot the locations where temples once stood. It will make a shocking documentary on fake 'Hindu hriday samrat'.
And this particularly biting one
Latest Namo Chant: saugandh aap ki khate hain, pehle shauchalaya baneynge.
Fact on Narendra Modi: his governance is so bad that he is not able to impmlement the law of prohibition in any district of Gujarat, any day of the year. Let him name one district where there is prohibition.
Question on Narendra Modi: Is he now planning a strategy on the Shauchalaya-Devalaya paradigm – how to retract it? If he retracts no one will know which is the real Narendra Modi; a split in personality will be toxic for his desperate lunge towards 7RCR. He can't drive on punctured tyres.
Question on Narendra Modi: Why is Narendra Modi impotent? before the hooch mafia in Gujarat, which has been openly flouting the law of prohibition every day of Modi's rule through 14 years? In each district of the state? Liquor mafia pays black money as bribe for defying the law.
Fact on Narendra Modi: Modi's walk has turned into a swagger. As if he is emerging from the ravines of Sholay (devoid of Shauchalaya). I find it arrogant. You don't see such a swagger in the walk of Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Raman Singh LK Advani, Sonia Gandhi, Manmohan Singh, Ratan Tata, Pronnoy Roy, Sachin Tendulkar or even Amitabh Bachchan. People don't tolerate arrogance in their leaders.
Hello! This is the VHP speaking....