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With the rapid radicalisation of sections of Hindu society, the Hindutva project has become dangerously autonomous. It is no longer possible to see it only as an electoral strategy of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Today one does not need to even presume the direct hand of the BJP or the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh behind Hindutva’s every move. Its exponential social growth may have placed it beyond their control.
In a formally secular India, religion indeed seems to have become the opium of the people. When Marx described religion as “the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people,” he spoke of it as