15 June, 2021

Fundamentally Wrong

Guha is wrong, ‘Hindu fundamentalist’ is an oxymoron

Illustration by Sorit
Fundamentally Wrong

I must take issue with Ramachandra Guha’s latest polemic (Outlook, Nov 19). This is not the first time he has used the phrase ‘Hindu fundamentalist’. Five years ago, he asserted, also in this magazine, that “as long as Pakistan exists there will be Hindu fundamentalists in India”. Enough is enough. While I have no quarrel with  Guha’s use of the word ‘Hindutva’, I suggest that he drop ‘Hindu fundamentalist’ from his vocabulary. The beast does not exist, ‘Hindu fundamentalist’ is an oxymoron.

A Christian believes that Jesus Christ was the son of God. It is fundamental to his belief. If he does not believe that, he cannot call himself a Christian. A Muslim has to accept that there is only one God and Mohammed was his prophet. Otherwise, he is not a Muslim. The Hindu does not have such a key theological tenet that is fundamental to his religion. We do not subscribe to one single dogma. In fact, ours is not much of...

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