The election of Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Narendra Modi as Prime Minister (PM) of India has allowed the extremist Hindutva ideology to disturb the country’s social order. The ideology’s origins can be traced back to a secular, diehard Hindu named Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, who in his 1923 essay ‘Essentials of Hindutva’ presented a new, distorted version of Hinduism, and what it meant to be Hindu. Savarkar stressed that India is exclusively for Hindus and they must safeguard their religion – apparently from Muslims. Again in 1928, Savarkar published a pamphlet ‘Hindutva: Who is a Hindu?’ and put forward the concepts of ‘Indian Nation’ and ‘Greater India’ and defined a Hindu on the basis of race, culture and nation. The essays and books of Savarkar served as the Bible for his followers and they relentlessly followed those arguments.If Hindutva was confined to only the promotion of Hinduism as a religion or belief, there would be nothing wrong with it. Unfortunately, the progenitors of Hindutva took it upon themselves to denigrate Muslims as well as other religious groups, driving the Indian society to fear and hate.In 1939 another extremist Hindu – MS Golwalkar — put forward a new book titled We or Our Nationhood Defined. Golwalkar defined the Hindu religion and nation, he also used virulent language especially aimed at Muslims. On September 27, 1925 – Dr Keshav Baliram Hedgewar – a physician by profession and a Hindu by religion – was deeply influenced and impressed by the teachings of Savarkar and laid down the foundations of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) or the National Volunteers Movement in Nagpur, Maharashtra – then under British India. Ostensibly, Dr Hedgewar was driven by the notion of ‘Hindu Rashtra’ or the ‘Hindu nation’ and wanted to organise the’Hindu nation’ primarily to preserve its identity. It was driven by intense hate and antipathy towards Muslims and Islam. Instead of teaching Hindus the notion of civic nationalism, they were given a distorted, radicalised version of Hinduism flanked by extreme sentiments of Hindu nationalism. Hindutva appeared to have been placed on the backburner by the Indian Congress, while BJP, in its earlier rule under Atal Bihari Vajpayee, did not display a penchant for extremist Hindutva policies. It however, has received ascendancy in the government of Narendra Modi, who is himself a pracharak of the radical ideology.The latest victims of Hindutva ideology besides Muslims, Christians and low caste Hindus — the Dalits — appear to be the Sikhs. Its community leaders have expressed grave resentment and anger over the RSS’ malicious designs of Hindutva, aimed at establishing hegemony of Hindus over India. Sikhs in India were suppressed under Indira Gandhi, when she ordered a massive crackdown on the Golden Temple in Amritsar, the holiest of Sikh shrines through Operation Blue Star onJune 1, 1984. She paid dearly when two of her own Sikh guards assassinated her. Since then, the Sikhs have been supressed. Now however, they are being directly targeted. This is happening to the extent that concerned voices have been raised by large Sikh community leaders in Australia and Canada.The RSS’ Ghar Wapsi (return to your home) campaign, is an ongoing movement which aims to bring converted Muslims, Sikhs and Christians back to Hinduism.This law is a repeat of the past Shuddhi (purification) movementModi is constrained to support the repressive policies of the RSS in pursuit of the Hindutva diktat. During the 2014 general elections, Modi reached out to his parent organization, the RSS and Sangh Parivar for electoral support. Following his victory, the progenitors of Hindutva demanded their pound of flesh: implementation of stern Hindutva doctrines and placement of extremist Hindus in important positions in the Indian government; thus the National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and the heads of the IB and RAW are in the same category. The RSS’ ghar wapsi (return to your home) campaign, is an ongoing movement which aims to bring back converted Muslims, Sikhs and Christians to Hinduism. Many low caste Hindus, the Dalit had converted to escape the repression by high caste Hindus, the Brahmins. This law is a repeat of the past shuddhi (purification) movement. Readers may recall that on September 24, 1990, then BJP president LK Advani launched “a crusade in defence of Hindutva”, which culminated in the demolition of Babri Masjid on 6 December 1992.Since 1996, the BJP’s election manifestoes for Lok Sabha elections pledge to espouse Hindutva in these terms: “The cultural nationalism of India … is the core of Hindutva.” This explains the Modi government’s systematic purge of educational and cultural institutions.The ‘Ghar Wapsi’ movement is also based on getting Sikhs into the folds of Hindutva, and aimed at converting the Christians and Muslims so they return to their ‘original religion’. The movement has gained momentum during the current Modi regime. The recent visit of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to India was marred by his ostensible support for the Sikh community. He was greeted by mocks and jibes, facing embarrassment. Human Rights activists the world over must take cognizance of RSS groups in India harassing minorities, especially the Muslims and Sikhs in the name of Hindutva. This cannot be a reflection of “Shining India”.The writer is a retired Group Captain of PAF. He is a columnist, analyst and TV talk show host, who has authored six books on current affairs, including three on ChinaPublished in Daily Times, May 26th 2018.