Date: Feb 12, 2020

About the book

Rightwing thought has a long and ancient tradition in India. In this book, author Jaithirth Rao traces its history, explores its philosophical underpinnings and different manifestations, and defines it as conservatism — a philosophy that rejects radical, reactionary and utopian positions and argues for change that evolves gradually and peacefully, preserves features of the past that are constructive and worth cherishing, and believes in a minimalist state that protects individual liberties even as it promotes policies that work on the ground. Hindu nationalism and the Bharatiya Janata Party are among the many offshoots of this tradition. Focusing on five areas — the economy, politics, culture, society and aesthetics — the author examines the rich contribution that Indian conservatism could make in each of these fields in contemporary India.

About the author

Jaithirth Rao is the founder and former CEO of the software company MphasiS. He is currently the executive chairman of Value and Budget Housing Corporation (VBHC), an affordable housing venture which he founded in 2010.


Baijayant Panda, Vice President and Spokesperson, Bharatiya Janata Party

Kanchan Gupta, Distinguished Fellow, ORF (chair)


2:30 ‒ 3:00 p.m. | Registration

3:00 ‒ 3:10 p.m. | Opening remarks by the chair | Kanchan Gupta

3:10 ‒ 3:50 p.m. | Remarks by author | Jaithrith Rao

3:50 ‒ 4:30 p.m. | Panel discussion

4:30 ‒ 4:50 p.m. | Moderated Q&A

4:50 ‒ 5:00 p.m. | Closing remarks by chair

5:00 p.m. onwards | High tea

Venue Address

Conference Hall, ORF New Delhi