Sita Ram Goel : biography
Sita Ram Goel () (1921–2003), writer and publisher in late twentieth century. He had Marxist leanings during the 1940s,Sita Ram Goel, How I became a Hindu, Published By Voice of India, New Delhi, India but later became an outspoken anti-communist and also wrote extensively on the damage to Indian culture and heritage wrought by expansionist Islam and missionary activities of Christianity. In his later career he emerged as a commentator on Indian politics, and adhered to Hindu nationalism.
Sita Ram Goel was born to a non-traditional Hindu family in Haryana, in 1921; though his childhood was spent in Calcutta. The family looked upon Sri Garibdas, a nirguna saint comparable to Kabir and Nanak, as its patron saint and his verses, "Granth Saheb",This is a separate collection of hymns by Garibdas and a few other Bhakti saints. Not to be confused with holy-book of The Sikhs were often recited at their home.Goel, Sita Ram, , Chapter 1
Goel graduated in history from the University of Delhi in 1944. As a student, he was a social activist and worked for a Harijan Ashram in his village. His sympathies for the Arya Samaj, the Harijans and the Indian freedom movement, along with his strong support for Mahatma Gandhi, brought him into conflict with many people in his village;Goel, Sita Ram, , Chapter 2 Goel also learned to speak and write Sanskrit during these college days.Goel, Sita Ram, , Chapter 3
Direct Action Day
On August 16, 1946, during the Direct Action Day riots in Calcutta that were instigated by the Muslim League shortly before Partition of India, Goel, his wife and their eldest son narrowly escaped with their lives. In his autobiography, How I became a Hindu, Goel writes that he "would have been killed by a Muslim mob" but his fluent Urdu and his Western dress saved him. He further relates, that the next evening they "had to vacate that house and scale a wall at the back to escape murderous Muslim mobs advancing with firearms."Goel, Sita Ram, , Chapter 4 He subsequently wrote and circulated a lengthy article on the riots, titled "The Devil Dance In Calcutta", in which he held Hindus and Muslims equally responsible for the tragedy.Goel, Sita Ram, , Chapter 5 His friend Ram Swarup, however, criticized him for equating Muslim violence with Hindu violence, claiming that Muslim violence was "aggressive and committed in the furtherance of a very reactionary and retrograde cause, namely the vivisection of India".
Communism to anti-communism
In mid-1940s Goel met members of the CSP (Congress Socialist Party), translated writings by Narendra Deva and Jayaprakash Narayan into English, and was offered a position as an editor of a CSP publication. But his first editoral for the weekly was deemed to be pro-communist, and he had to stop writing for the weekly.
Sita Ram Goel had developed a strong Marxist leaning during his student days and was on the verge of joining the Communist Party of India in 1948. The Communist Party, however, was banned in Bengal on the day he planned to officially become its member. He read Karl Marx's Communist Manifesto and Das Kapital, Harold Laski's "Communism", and "came to the conclusion that while Marx stood for a harmonised social system, Sri Aurobindo held the key to a harmonised human personality." Later, books by Aldous Huxley, Victor Kravchenko, and Suzanne Labin ("Stalin's Russia") convinced him to abandon communism.Goel, Sita Ram, , Chapter 6 Subsequently he wrote many books critical of communism in Calcutta, and worked for the anti-communist "Society for the Defence of Freedom in Asia" (SDFA).Goel, Sita Ram, , Chapter 7Elst, Koenraad, "Ram Swarup (1920-98): outline of a biography" According to Goel, when he wanted to apply for a passport in 1955, he was told that his case was receiving attention from the Prime Minister himself, and his application was not granted.Sita Ram Goel Genesis and Growth of Nehruism (1993)
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