BJP’s Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy has emerged as the face of hardcore Hindutva ideology in recent years with his utterances often aimed at promoting the unification of Hindus and the weakening of India’s Muslim community. But, a viral old video of Swamy’s interview with journalist Vinod Dua suggests that he was not always so rabid with his anti-Muslim views.
The video clip, now gone viral, shows Swamy lashing out at his present party, the BJP, by highlighting its hypocrisy and the saffron party’s attempts to bring down Indian Muslims.
Speaking to Dua, Swamy is seen slamming the BJP in the viral video. He says that the BJP’s brand of nationalism is ‘totally negative’ adding that it’s designed to hurt Muslims’ interests. “The problem with the BJP’s definition of nationalism is that it’s totally negative. It’s defined in terms of how much Muslims lose. All their programmes if you highlight, they are all oriented towards that,” Swamy is heard saying in the video.
Swamy also goes on to highlight the BJP’s hypocrisy on Article 370 as he says, “Take for example Article 370. Now there’s similar Article 371, but they (the BJP) will never talk about that. That deals with North-East, which says the same thing.”
And he doesn’t stop here. He goes on to call out his present party’s double-standards on the issue of the Ayodhya dispute too as he says, “Same thing with the Ram Mandir. They don’t talk about Kailash Mansarovar, which is even more pavitra (pious) for us. So, their (the BJP’s) whole programme is not in terms of any constructive programmes, but in terms of how Muslims can be brought down.”
No sooner did Swamy’s old video emerge on social media, Twitterati moved in with lightening speed to detect his hypocrisy.
Simpler days, when anti-Muslim dogwhistle was easy to understand, even by the likes of fascist Swamy. pic.twitter.com/1W6ttnw60N
— Baba (@BabaGlocal) September 2, 2019
The great capitulation of the Swamy. https://t.co/UHveZjkymX
— Suchitra Vijayan (@suchitrav) September 2, 2019
In any sane democracy u cant change ur ideology u can’t be a liberal on a day or a facist cheerleader on another pr india m toh neta log 360 degree ka turn le lete hai aur bade aaram se jeet bhi jaate hai voter ko ghanta bhi farq padta ke uske neta ke views ek din m kaise bdl gye
— Яก♡ ㆚คற૯૯ꀋ (@raozam) September 2, 2019
Subramanian Swamy on BJP & Article 370… Have this person ever been consistent on anything in life .This is the Nth time seeing his flip flops on issues.
And there are some educated Idiots who still believe he is a Genius… 😆😆😆 pic.twitter.com/xhz9fy2mH0
— 𝙋𝙧𝙞𝙣𝙘𝙚 𝙈𝙚𝙘𝙝𝙚𝙧𝙮 𝘽𝙖𝙡𝙖𝙣 (@princegdr) September 2, 2019
The emergence of this video assumes significance given his support for the abrogation of Article 370 and the construction of a Ram Temple at the disputed land in Ayodhya, where a mosque existed until 6 December 1992. Swamy has also suggested that the Indian government should acquire any disputed land provided it adequately compensated its owners.
More recently, in a bizarre flip flop on the matter of the central government’s decision to abrogate Article 370 on Jammu and Kashmir, Swamy had said jubilantly, “So I am proved right. To abolish Art 370 we do not need a Constitutional Amendment. Amit Shah has however informed Parliament by way of a Resolution what President today has already notified. Art 370 died today. Collaterally so Art 35 A.”
The video in question is taken from Swamy’s interview to Doordarshan in 1991, when he had appeared on the channel to discuss his Samajwadi Janata Party’s dismal performance in that year’s Lok Sabha polls. Among other things, he had said that he will move ‘heaven and earth to see that the BJP doesn’t come to power.’ The Congress had gone on to form a minority government under Narasimha Rao.
Swamy’s interviewers were Vinod Dua and NDTV’s Prannoy Roy.