Controversial Book Claims Jesus Christ Was a Hindu Tamil Brahmin


Christians in India have dismissed the Hindu Jesus, brought to life by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the umbrella organization for rightwing Hindu groups in the country, by refusing to be drawn into a controversy that claims Christ was in fact Hindu and Christianity broke away from Hinduism.

The controversial book, titled Christ Parichay and authored by Damodar Savarkar was dismissed last month by Pastor Paul Ciniraj, president of Christian Ministers of the Churches in India, among others.

“It is absolutely false and rubbish. Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem as the son of Virgin Mary and was crucified and died for the salvation of every human being and raised from the dead in his 33 years of age according the Word of God. He is not a son of man, but Son of Living Almighty God,” he said.

With extensive research material and additional references, the book suggests that Christ was born Hindu. According to Savarkar, the Son of God travelled to India to study the Vedas, eventually becoming a yoga guru. After this, he returned to his country to preach Christianity but unfortunately found himself involved in a political storm, for which he was crucified, though he did manage to escape alive. The book claims members of the Essene cult rescued the dying Christ to revive him with the help of medicinal herbs and plants they had procured from the Himalayas. He apparently attained samadhi in Kashmir.

In his book, Savarkar identified Christ as Keshao Krishna, hailing from a Tamil Brahmin family and stressed that Christianity was just another Hindu sect.

“One place it says Jesus came from Jerusalem and went back to his country. Another place it says he was born in India as a Hindu Brahmin. How can it be? It is absolutely a made up story,” Ciniraj said while Father Nigel Barrett, spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Bombay, explained, “There is an attempt to re-write history and draw us into controversy. Christianity is well grounded and based on the person of Jesus who without a doubt is a real person in history.”

The book also suggests that modern day Arab and Palestinian territories once belonged to Hindus.

Barrett was asked to react to a recent news article about the release of Christ Parichay, the book that makes some of these outlandish claims and have caused Christians to point fingers at Hindus in the country. According to media reports, the book will be relaunched 70 years after it was first published in 1946.

“The RSS is welcome to claim what they will, it doesn’t affect us. Our faith in Jesus is based on a personal encounter with Christ,” Barrett added.

Swatantryaveer Savarkar Rashtriya Smarak or Savarkar National Memorial is the trust that preserves and promulgates literature and ideology of Savarkar and his younger sibling Veer Savarkar Ganesh, who along with four others, founded RSS in 1925.

Surprisingly, RSS has distanced itself from the controversy, saying the author of the book was not one of the founders of the organization.

“We wish to clarify that Ganesh Damodar Savarkar wasn’t founder of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. There was only one RSS founder, Dr. Hegdewar. Savarkar was in no way associated with RSS,” said Pramod Bapat, a top RSS functionary in the Konkan region of western India.

However, several accounts of RSS, including one by its own Member of Parliament M. J. Akbar, reveal the author’s connection with the founding of the organization.

Akbar’s India: A. Siege Within says about the RSS’ origin, “Five friends who started the RSS were Dr. B.S. Moonje, Dr. L.V. Paranjpe, Dr. Tholkar, Babarao Savarkar and Dr. Hedgewar himself.”

Another book by author Ritu Kohli elaborates the influence that Savarkar had on MS Gowalkar.

The book, titled Political Ideas of MS Golwalkar: Hindutva, Nationalism, Secularism, reads, “In 1938, Golwalkar prepared the first systematic statement to the RSS ideology, “We, and our Nationhood, Defined” a text which he later revealed was an abridgement of an essay on nationalism by Babarao Savarkar.”

The claims made in Christ Parichay have evoked widespread condemnation.

Clyde Crasto of Nationalist Congress Party dismissed the book’s claim as “politically driven and a fabricated story. … The current political scenario is allowing such false ideas to spread,” while Abraham Mathai, president of Indian Christian Voice and former Vice Chairman of Minorities Commission said, “The book is a sign of high ignorance of the author. Jesus Christ was born 2000 years ago in Bethlehem and died at Calvary. Yes, Christianity came first to India rather than the West, when St. Thomas, one of Jesus’s apostles came here to preach. The basis of this book is completely false.”

Young Christians too dismissed the claims.

IT professional Kevin Noronha said, “The book has no basis. The Christian community is strong in faith. Things like these cannot shake our belief, it only makes it stronger.”
They stressed that false claims would not shake their faith.

Anita Quadros, a logistics professional, said, “If Savarkar had read the Holy Bible, he would have not written all this. St. Thomas preached Christianity and not Hinduism. Our faith will stand firm in the face of this nonsense.”

Photo Credits: CatchNews

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