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Friday, 14 June 2024

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HomeNewsRSS urges final-year volunteers to work on consolidating Hindus

RSS urges final-year volunteers to work on consolidating Hindus

The training programme in RSS consists of three stages, with Nagpur hosting the final camp where this appeal was made by the organisation's mentors

The gathering of over 900 Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) volunteers in Nagpur marked the concluding phase of their training, with a focus on embracing and implementing the idea of a united Hindu society. This shift in approach was deemed necessary to address new challenges faced by the organisation, as stated by an RSS official in his opening speech to the trainees.

Led by Iqbal Singh, a Sikh volunteer from Punjab, the camp took place at the Smruti Mandir, Reshimbagh campus, with Shri Anam, the deputy head of intellectual activities for RSS in Jammu and Kashmir, serving as one of the mentors.

Participants from all over the country, including the Northeast, came together to attend the camp, which aimed to promote unity and shed biases.

On the first day, Parag Abhyankar, the national chief for service activities, addressed the trainees and emphasised the need to adapt to the changing times. He highlighted the camp’s goal of building a consolidated Hindu society with a global perspective, while also acknowledging the historical involvement of RSS in India’s freedom movement and the contributions of its founder, Dr Keshav Baliram Hedgewar, in the jungle satyagraha.

The training programme in RSS consists of three stages, with Nagpur hosting the final camp. Upon completion of the training, the candidates become eligible to take on greater responsibilities within the organisation.

The RSS camp, which began on 17 May, is scheduled to continue till 10 June. During this period, volunteers are required to adhere to a strict routine and are prohibited from using mobile phones. This camp, known as Karyakarta Vikas Varga (II), introduces a new training module and nomenclature, departing from the previous division into first, second, and third years.

About RSS in brief

The RSS is a Hindu organisation consisting of patriotic volunteers known as “swayamsevaks”. It is the founder and guiding force behind a vast network of organizations collectively referred to as the Sangh Parivar, which has made its mark in various sectors of Indian society, including the Bharatiya Janata Party, the ruling political party led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the 14th prime minister of India. Mohan Bhagwat has been serving as the Sarsanghchalak of the RSS since March 2009.

Established on 27 September 1925, the primary objective of the organization was to impart character training and instil “Hindu discipline” to foster unity among the Hindu community and advocate for a Hindu Rashtra (Hindu nation). The RSS aims to propagate the ideology of Hindutva to fortify the Hindu community, while also promoting the preservation of Indian culture and its civilisational values.

During the colonial era, the RSS focused on assisting the families of freedom fighters rather than directly participating in the freedom movement. Following independence, it evolved into a significant Hindu umbrella organization, giving rise to numerous affiliated bodies that set up schools, charitable institutions, and clubs to disseminate its ideological principles.

The RSS faced multiple bans in post-independence India, including a four-day ban in 1947 and subsequent bans in 1948 after Nathuram Godse, a former RSS member, assassinated Mahatma Gandhi, during the emergency period (1975–1977), and following the demolition of Babri Masjid in 1992.

In the 21st century, the RSS stands as the largest non-governmental organization in the world in terms of membership.

While leftists describe the RSS as “right-wing” and the West refers to it as a “Hindu nationalist” organisation, the body’s office bearers rubbish the branding, citing several leftist values it propagates. Hindutva is neither a leftist nor a rightist construct, RSS sarkaryavah Dattatreya Hosabale said at the launch of the book, The Hindutva Paradigm: Integral Humanism and the Quest for a Non-Western Worldview, written by RSS national executive member Ram Madhav in October 2021.

For the past few years since the Sangh Parivar led by Sarsanghachalak Bhagwat and Prime Minister Modi began their Muslim outreach programme, a section of Hindus has been increasingly critical of the ‘parivar‘, seeing them as no different from other leftist groups. The most prominent face in this group is Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati, a disciple of Swaroopanand Saraswati — who was identified as a pro-Congress Shankaracharya — and disputed inheritor of the Jyotirmath. A bunch of people from this section has floated a political party that is fledgeling as of now.

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