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Right wing terror main agenda at BJP, RSS meet

Sumit Pande |

Updated: February 13, 2013, 9:39 AM IST
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Right wing terror main agenda at BJP, RSS meet
RSS is concerned its activities could come under scanner after recent executions of Afzal Guru and Ajmal Kasab.

New Delhi: Right wing terror topped the agenda at the meet between top brass of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) that was held on Tuesday in Delhi. There is a growing apprehension within the RSS that the Centre will now take a hard-line on right wing terror after the recent executions of Afzal Guru and Ajmal Kasab.

The RSS is concerned that the organisation's activities could come under the scanner and the noose is tightening around Sadhvi Pragya and Lt Col Purohit. The meeting, held at a party secretary's house on Rajdoot Marg, lasted for five hours and was attended by BJP President Rajnath Singh, LK Advani, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj, her Rajya Sabha counterparty Arun Jaitley, Murli Manohar Joshi, Ananth Kumar and General Secretary (Organisation) Ramlal.

RSS was represented by General Secretary Suresh Bhaiyyaji Joshi, Joint General Secretary Suresh Soni, Madandas Devi, V Satish, Saudan Singh and Dattatreya Hosbole. RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat was in the capital but did not attend the meeting. However, sources said he was apprised of the issues and the details of the discussion.

Though both RSS and BJP were hush-hush about the subjects discussed in the meeting, sources said the Prime Ministerial candidate issue did not come up. A section within BJP is keen that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi be declared the party's Prime Ministerial candidate to maximise its electoral prospects.

RSS has also praised Modi but has stopped short of openly saying he should be the PM candidate. The Hindutva agenda and Ram temple issue, which was focussed upon by VHP last week at the Maha Khumbh in Allahabad, also did not come up for discussion.

Sources described the meeting as a "routine affair". The RSS has taken strong note of the "Hindu" terror remarks of Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde and asked the BJP to take up the issue inside and outside Parliament. However, there are concerns that the effort and the public response on it have both been lukewarm till date.

There is also a view with BJP that the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru has further blunted the campaign against Shinde. RSS is keen that the Sangh Parivar outfits act in tandem with BJP during the forthcoming Assembly elections in states like Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Chhattisgarh and Delhi to improve the party's performance in the polls, sources said. Infighting and differences between BJP leaders and RSS or those leaders enjoying closer proximity to RSS, have affected BJP in polls in the recent past, they said.

(With Additional Inputs From PTI)

First Published: February 13, 2013, 9:39 AM IST
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