Social Scientist. v 9, no. 97 (Aug 1980) p. 70.


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GEETA PURI, BHARATIYA JANA SANGH: ORGANISATION AND IDEOLOGY, Sterling Publishers, New Delhi. 1980, pp 292 Rs 90.

THE TITLE of the book, "Bharatiya Jana Sangh: Organisation and Ideology", is a misnomer as the book deals mainly with the Delhi unit of the Bhratiya Jana Sangh. The book has grown out of a Ph D dissertation submitted by the author to the Jawharlal Nehru University. Divided into 10 chapters, it deals with the party's organization, ideologies, policies and programmes, the predominant influence of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)on the party, electoral purformancc of the Delhi unit, the rifts and splits in the party, movements and agitations by the Delhi unit and its socio-economic and intellectual character.

The Jana Sangh was considered to be a party of exclusive interests, castes, area and community, that is, a party of petty-bourgeois sections of Hindus belonging to high castes of urban areas mostly of northern India. The intellectual orientation of the Jana Sangh was largely, in fact entirely, due to its inseparable, almost spiritual and close, organizational identification with the RSS. It is true that the intimate connection with the RSS strengthened the Jana Sangh organizationally and gave it a disciplined and unified cadre which not only helped the Jana Sangh in its organizational expansion but also provided a well-oiled' machinery for electoral purposes. But then the RSS connection prevented the Jana Sangh from integrating with the national mainstream and acquiring a diversified mass base.

The author quotes statements of Jana Sangh leaders to prove the veracity of her statements regarding RSS-Jana Sangh links. For example when Balraj Madhok was expelled from the



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