New Delhi: The Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) general body meeting at Nagpur this weekend is being closely watched in political circles for any changes in two key organisational positions which may impact Sangh’s internal dynamics and its relations with the BJP.
RSS general secretary or sar karyawah Bhaiyyaji Joshi’s current three-year term gets over with the Akhil Bhartiya Pratinidhi Sabha (ABPS) meet which began on Friday. Joshi has been in office for nine years now; having got two extensions after his nomination in 2009. General Secretary in the RSS hierarchy is the most powerful position after sarsanghchalak and is the chief executive overseeing the organisational apparatus, including Sangh’s relationship with its affiliates.
Mohan Bhagwat before assuming office worked as sar-karyawah under KS Sudarshan. A change of guard at number two position has had a direct bearing on Sangh’s interactions with the BJP.
“For instance, Advaniji was very comfortable in dealing with Madandas Devi, the sar-karyawah during NDA-I. Later, the when Suresh Soni as seh- sar-karyawah (joint general secretary) became the interface between the BJP and the RSS, things changed,” says a RSS leader.
RSS leaders thus far are tight-lipped on whether Joshi will get another term in office.
The person who could replace Joshi as number-2 in the hierarchy is another joint general secretary Dattatreya Hosabale. The RSS pracharak from Karnataka has risen up the ranks and has worked as organisation secretary of the RSS’ students wing Akhil Bhartiya Vidyathi Parishad (ABVP).
The other key position which is being keenly watched is that of general secretary organisation of the BJP. The current incumbent Ram Lal has had the longest stint in a position which is the link between the RSS and the BJP.
Senior RSS pracharaks on deputation to the BJP are appointed to this post. KN Govindacharya, Narendra Modi, Sanjay Joshi, Kushabhau Thakre have been some of the ideologues who have worked as general secretary organisation.
But the moot question is will the RSS bring about these crucial changes just ahead of the General Elections?