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Detailed Probe into Covid-19 Origin, 'Swadeshi' Model in Post-pandemic Economy: RSS Policy on Path Ahead

A health worker uses an infrared thermometer to measure the temperature of a labourer at the construction site of a residential building during a nationwide lockdown to slow the spreading of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). REUTERS/Amit Dave TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

A health worker uses an infrared thermometer to measure the temperature of a labourer at the construction site of a residential building during a nationwide lockdown to slow the spreading of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). REUTERS/Amit Dave TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

The RSS may want to be incorporate the broader policy adjustments -- both domestic and international – in the working and objectives of the government in the aftermath of the pandemic.

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) hopes a detailed inquiry will be carried out to “investigate the origin” of global pandemic while pitching for an alternative economic model of self-reliance or ‘swadeshi’ in the post Covid-19 era.

Some of these broader policy issues were delineated in a background note circulated by the Sangh ahead of an interaction between RSS joint general secretary Dattatreya Hosabale and foreign media personal on Wednesday.

“Hopefully, a detailed inquiry will be carried out to investigate the origin, reason and impact of the pandemic. The entire world should come together to avoid such an emergency in future and create new regimes to deal with, involving responsible individuals, organisations and countries,” the note read without naming China.

The RSS is the ideological fount of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) heading the coalition government at the Centre under Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

The note underlines the broader policy adjustments -- both domestic and international – the RSS may want to be incorporate in the working and objectives of the government in the aftermath of the pandemic.

US President Donald Trump and his administration has been critical of China’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak, accusing the Asian giant of not being transparent in communicating the severity and scale of the disease which reportedly had its first zoonotic transmission on the central Chinese city of Wuhan.

The note circulated by the RSS also sought to underscore the limitations of “capitalism and communism” in dealing with economic wreck inflicted by the virus which has forced a third of the planet to lockdown all economic activities and claimed more than 2,00,000 lives.

“The materialist world view imposed on the entire world can push us to newer cycles of economic depression and environmental degradation. In such a scenario, it is prudent that we develop a new model based on self-reliance and ‘Swadeshi’.

“In this indigenous model, local resources, workforce and needs would be integrated into the economic activity, taking into account the ecological considerations,” the note said.

The RSS’ views assume importance in the wake of a frenzied discussion on how the world and its economy would re-calibrate once the pandemic is brought under control.

India, Indonesia and Thailand are being touted as beneficiaries if some of the international players were to reduce their dependence on China for manufacturing.

“After the COVID-19 crisis, the Government of India and other state administrations will have to think how to attract investment from other countries without harming local self-reliance, without harming our natural resources to the extent we face another problem,” HosabLe said in answer to a question on how India may attract investments post-pandemic.