The restoration of Somnath Temple, which was plundered by invaders in the medieval ear, was an “act of restoring the glory of Bharat”, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) joint General Secretary Manmohan Vaidya was quoted as saying by The Week.
While speaking at a seminar titled 'Idea of Bharat' organised at Nagpur, he also said that the nation was witnessing an ideological struggle between the view of “Bharat” which stood for its ancient history and culture, and the western view.
The RSS leader cited that the restoration of the temple in Gujarat and said that even Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and KM Munshi saw this as an act of restoring the nation's pride.
“In 1948, Sardar Patel saw Somnath Temple in ruins and wanted to rebuild it grandly. This was not a communal act nor was it against anybody. It was to restore the pride of Bharat,” he reportedly said.
“Similarly, KM Munshi, who was also a cabinet minister in Jawaharlal Nehru's government, took the lead in the issue. However, Nehru was opposed to this idea,” Vaidya said.
“KM Munshi had invited Pandit Nehru for the prana pratishta (idol consecration) of Somnath Temple. The next PM attended the function stating that he would have done so even if the invite was for a masjid or church,” Vaidya said.
After Independence, unfortunately, there is a fashion to refuse to acknowledge who we are, he said. “We started calling ourselves progressive, liberal and intellectual”, Vaidya said.
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