NEW DELHI: The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) may invite Congress president Rahul Gandhi to attend a three-day lecture series by Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat here next month, sources in the organisation said on Monday.
The idea is to invite people from different ideologies for the event, a source in the RSS said, adding that the list is being prepared and may also include CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury.
Indications that Gandhi could be invited came on a day the RSS criticised him for drawing parallels between the Sangh and Islamic radical outfit Muslim Brotherhood.
Giving details of the September event, RSS prachar pramukh Arun Kumar said the Sangh was for the first time organising a three-day lecture series of its chief Mohan Bhagwat on the theme, ‘Future of Bharat: An RSS perspective.’
“Bhagwatji will address and interact with select audience comprising prominent citizens on ‘Future of Bharat: An RSS perspective’ in a three-day lecture series,” Kumar told reporters. The event will be held at Vighan Bhavan from September 17 to September 19.
Kumar said people across the country wanted to know and associate with the RSS. “This lecture series has been organised in this context… Sarsanghchalak (RSS chief) Mohan Bhagwatji will present the Sangh views on various contemporary issues of national importance,” Kumar said. Replying to a question on whether Gandhi will also be invited, Kumar said the list had not been finalised.
“It is our prerogative to choose who to invite or not. Leave this to us… But people from all walks of life, including from different political outfits, ideologies and religions, will be invited,” he said.
In June this year, Congress veteran and former president Pranab Mukherjee attended an event at the RSS headquarters in Nagpur on the Sangh’s invitation, for which he was criticised by the party leaders.
The RSS, an ideological mentor of BJP, was the focus of Gandhi’s attack during his recent visit abroad. Last week, at the International Institute of Strategic Studies in London, Gandhi had said the RSS’ idea is similar to that of Muslim Brotherhood in the Arab world.
He had also alleged that the RSS was trying to “change” the nature of India and “capture” its institutions.
The Sangh said the Congress chief cannot understand the saffron outfit as he does not know India. He had also alleged that the RSS was trying to “change” the nature of India and “capture” its institutions.