RSS Will Keep Moving Forward Like An Elephant Despite Attacks, Says Dattatreya Hosabale

If there is no democracy in the country, how are elections being held and the parliament functioning in the country, he asked.
<div class="paragraphs"><p>(Source: Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh website)</p></div>
(Source: Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh website)

RSS General Secretary Dattatreya Hosabale on Tuesday lashed out at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for his relentless attacks on the organisation, blaming it for undermining the democracy and institutions in the country.

"As a leader of the political party, Gandhi should speak responsibly," he said. A party that converted the country into a "jail" of sorts during the emergency has no moral right to talk about democracy, Hosabale said.

In London recently, Rahul Gandhi had called the RSS a “fundamentalist, fascist organisation". Hosabale said he must be doing this for his "political agenda", but RSS does not work in the political field and he has no competition with the Sangh.

"Thousands of people including me were put behind bars during the emergency. They (Congress) are yet to apologise for this. The country will ask them if they have a moral right to talk about democracy," he said.

If there is no democracy in the country, how are elections being held and the parliament functioning in the country, he asked.

"His party also won in one or two elections," Hosabale highlighted.  Gandhi had alleged that the structures of Indian democracy are under “brutal attack” and BJP and RSS have captured almost all institutions. He has frequently accused the Sangh of polarising the society on communal lines.

Hosabale said Gandhi should see the reality of RSS' acceptance among people and its work to help society, rather than attack the organisation. "We have faced this before. It doesn't matter to us. The RSS works to strengthen the society and its work will continue. It will keep moving forward like an elephant," he said.

Hosabale said the national education policy was framed during Prime Minister Narendra Modi's regime after getting feedback from the grassroots levels, including panchayats, "unlike under the Congress-led UPA regime when policies were framed by the National Advisory Committee".

"Just because someone is saying there is no democracy doesn't mean it is true. People of the country and world are watching. They all know what is the truth. Perhaps he also knows," he said. 

Hosabale was speaking at the end of the three-day RSS meeting at Samalkha, Haryana. The event that began on March 12 was attended by over 1,400 office-bearers, including RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat.

BJP President JP Nadda and General Secretary (Organization) BL Santhosh also participated in the meeting. The Akhil Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh is the highest decision-making body of the organisation.

Hosabale also backed the government's recent position in the Supreme Court opposing same-sex marriages. “Marriage can only take place between persons of opposite genders. The Sangh agrees with the government's view on same-sex marriage,” Hosabale said.

"In our culture and thought, marriage is not only for individual enjoyment. It is not merely a union of two people. It is for the benefit of the family and society at large. It is not for physical and sexual enjoyment. That is the Hindu culture," he said.

The central government has opposed in the Supreme Court a batch of petitions seeking legal validation of same-sex marriages, claiming they will cause “complete havoc” with the delicate balance of personal laws and accepted societal values.

On Monday, the Supreme Court referred the pleas seeking legal validation of same-sex marriages to a five-judge constitution bench for adjudication.

On the recent issue of alleged attacks on migrants from Hindi speaking states in South India, Hosabale said some forces have been trying to play up the issue of language for their own survival and vested interests, but society doesn't allow it for too long.

"They can be successful for some time, but everyone understands in this country people can go to any state to work. There is no opposition to Hindi or any language. If you go to the interiors of Tamil Nadu also, you find Hindi tuitions, people working to clear Hindi exams. Similarly in Nagaland, people want to learn Hindi," he said.

"Respect for your mother tongue is very important but it cannot mean hatred for another language. Our swayamsevaks always try to hold mother tongue groups for people from the state working in another to help them stay connected."

On RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat's recent meetings with prominent Muslim personalities on issues related to the minority community, he said, there was no outreach by the RSS towards Muslim intellectuals. "But if anyone wants to engage with the organisation, it is ready."

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