Congress protested the presence of Union Ministers there at the behest of a “non-state actor” when they are accountable only to the people.
Kashmir and how to deal with Pakistan-sponsored terror dominated the second day of the BJP-RSS co-ordination meet here on Thursday, even as the Opposition Congress protested the presence of Union Ministers there at the behest of a “non-state actor” when they are accountable only to the people.
Union Ministers Rajnath Singh (Home), Manohar Parikkar (Defence), Smriti Irani (Human Resource Development), Jual Oram (Tribal Affairs) spoke to 93 delegates, including RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat, about the challenges facing their Ministry.
Although an annual feature in the RSS-BJP events calendar, this meeting is different in the sense that it is much bigger in terms of delegates, and the duration (three days instead of the two days normally reserved for it).
The heavy presence of Ministers, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi expected to attend on Friday, saw the Opposition raise the red flag over the accountability of the government to the RSS.
As the meeting went on till late in the night, reactions on social media and the principal opposition Congress party looked askance at it.
“Ministers of the government giving presentations to non-elected shenanigans of a supposedly non-political organisation and getting appraised by the RSS for the work they are doing is nothing but a grave travesty of democracy,” AICC general secretary in charge of media, Randeep Surjewala said.
The RSS told Mr. Rajnath Singh and Mr. Parikkar that the escalation in terror incidents needed to be tackled both by security forces and through political efforts.
The government was advised that the people of Jammu and Kashmir need to be made aware of Pakistan-sponsored terror and its true nature. The RSS also expressed concern that the Hindu population had fallen under the “psychological” mark of 80% in the recently released census data on religious demographics.
The reported rise in the population of minority communities in the border areas also came up for sharp comment. However, Hindu Bangladeshis were to be treated as refugees, was the common consensus.
Ms. Smriti Irani was asked by the RSS to ensure, as much as possible, education in the mother tongue. “Value education and a breaking away from western values should also be part of the new education policy. Text books should add heroes from all walks of life,” reported a source as being the RSS’ contribution to the discussion.
The organisation’s prachar pramukh Manmohan Vaidya confirmed that the “samanwaya baithak today discussed scenario of national security, internal and external, besides the national education scenario.” The meeting concludes on Friday.