Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (R S S): Goa
This is a collection of articles archived for the excellence of their content.
2016: Resignations on the issue of language
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (R S S) plunged into a crisis in August with its office-bearers in Goa resigning en masse after the Nagpur-based outfit sacked its Goa unit chief Subhash Velingkar. The unprecedented revolt in the `disciplined' outfit followed another first: Velingkar is the only R S S state chief to be ousted from office. Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM), an organisation Velingkar is also part of, had announced late the previous day that it would float a political party to take on BJP in the 2017 Goa polls on the issue of giving primacy to regional languages over English as a medium of instruction in schools.
R S S national prachar pramukh Manmohan Vaidya told TOI: “One cannot remain an R S S functionary and carry out political activities. As Velingkar has announced he would launch a new political party, R S S relieved him of his responsibilities.“
Hours after he was sacked, the swayamse vaks in Goa started de manding that Veling kar be reinstated. But the Konkan `prant' of R S S, which governs the state unit, refused to budge, triggering the showdown. Senior R S S official Ratna kar Lele said BJP could not dictate terms to R S S as it was the parent body . Another member, Praveen Neswanker, said, “We will now work full time for BBSM and enrol two lakh rakshaks to ensure that BJP is defeated in the 2017 polls“. All vibhag, zilla, taluka and shaka pramukhs in Goa resigned, he said.
Tension was palpable at an emergency meeting of R S S at Bambolim on the outskirts of Panaji, which quickly turned into a no holds-barred attack on the outfit's brass and BJP .Around 250 sevaks from across the state and six representatives of the Konkan prant attended the meeting.All shakhas across the state will be closed from Thursday .
During the meeting held at K B Hedgewar school complex, an institution run by R S S, the sevaks came out strongly in support of Velingkar, saying they had joined R S S because of him.
Velingkar and BBSM have been demanding that government aid in Goa should be provided only to primary schools which have Konkani, Marathi or any other regional language as their medium of instruction.
Velingkar has vehemently opposed the state government's move to give grant to English medium primary schools and even targeted BJP officials from Goa, including Union defence minister Manohar Parrikar, over the issue. He had called Parrikar a `liar' for not adhering to his promise to stop grants to 127 Church-run Englishmedium primary schools.
However, BJP refused to withdraw the grant for fear of losing out on Catholic votes.
Asked about Velingkar supporters' claim that a section of R S S was supporting them in their campaign against BJP, Vaidya clarified: “Sangh's Konkan unit had extended its support to campaign in favour of local languages, which was a social issue and had nothing to do with politics.“ Vaidya stressed that action against Velingkar was not taken because of his anti-BJP stance.
A statement issued by R S S Konkan Prant Sanghachalak Satish Modh said: “R S S feels that all efforts should be made to strengthen the system for primary education in mother tongue in the country . R S S has supported and will continue to support the cause of agitation in Goa by BBSM which is in consonance with the aforesaid opinion of R S S.“
The statement emphasised: “R S S, since its inception, has never been involved in politics, and hence, R S S would have no role in the political endeavour of BBSM.“
BBSM workers had shown black flags to BJP president Amit Shah on his recent Goa visit. This, along with state BJP members' complaint to party brass against Velingkar, is said to have triggered Sangh's action.
(With inputs from Akhilesh Singh in Delhi)
New chief of the state unit appointed
In a stern message to rebels under sacked Goa R S S head Subhash Velingkar, the Sangh appointed Laxman Behre as the new chief of its state unit, a day ahead of the scheduled convention of the breakaway group near here.
Behre's appointment as `Goa Vibhag Sangh Chalak' was viewed as a snub to the rebels who had broken away from the Sangh's Konkan prant (region) in protest against Velingkar's ouster and formed a separate Goa prant under him.However, the swayamsewaks had not disassociated themselves from main R S S.
In another order, Mahesh Dhavalikar was designated as karyavah of Konkan prant.
Rebel group’s show of strength
The R S S rebel group, led by the Sangh's sacked Goa unit head Subhash Velingkar, organised what seemed to be a show of strength, around 2,000 R S S cadres attended the first of-its kind meeting organised by the newly-formed outfit.
R S S Goa prant also launched a `Majey Yogdan' campaign, under which individual R S S Goa prant cadres will hold meetings in their respective areas and enrol `matrubhasha rakshaks' (mother tongue protectors).
R S S Goa prant passed four unanimous resolutions at the meeting which included R S S Goa prant's unconditional support to Bhartiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM), fighting for primacy to Marathi and Konkani langu ages as the medium of in struction. It also passed a resolution condemning BJP's decision to continue grant-in-aid to 132 church-run English-medium schools.
The cadres also pledged to continue their fight for the protection of Hindu culture.
Dissenters form Goa Suraksha Manch
`Goa Suraksha Manch Will Provide Alternative'
The Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM) on Sunday launched its political party, the Goa Suraksha Manch (GSM), to contest the next assembly polls with the intention of defeating BJP and forming the next government in the state.
After agitating for 15 months to withdraw the grant-in-aid to 132 English medium primary schools run by the church, senior BBSM functionary Subhash Velingkar announced the political party in Panaji in the presence of BBSM supporters. Velingkar, a former sanghchalak of R S S Goa, was shunted out from the organisation recently .
Anand Shirodkar has been appointed as the president of Goa Suraksha Manch.
The party is likely to field candidates in 35 constituencies and claimed to have strong presence in nine constituencies in each district.Also announced were the state committee, district committees, youth wing and women's cell.
Shirodhkar said committees had been constituted at the panchayat-level and booth-level.
Velingkar said that as Maharastrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) did not give any assurance to break ties with BJP and join BBSM, they decided to give a political alternative to the people of Goa.
Velingkar said GSM was not a `political' party but an attempt to save the culture of the state. BBSM had given Maharastrawadi Gomantak Party a September 30 deadline to decide whether they wanted to break the alliance with BJP and form an alliance, but MGP did not respond.
Maharastrawadi Gomantak Party had openly declared support for the BBSM demand to withdraw grants to English medium schools.
Senior BBSM functionary Uday Bhembre said the state was facing several issues, “But our immediate priority is to defeat BJP and win the assembly election,“ he said.
2017: Velingkar, others return
Nearly six months after he led a revolt against R S S and formed his own `vibhag', Subhash Velingkar re joined his pa rent organiza tion on Mon day and promi sed “never to leave the Sangh again“.
“We have officially dissolved the R S S prant with immediate effect and swayamsevaks will attend shakhas held under the R S S vibhag. We have joined mainstream R S S,“ Velingkar told reporters here, adding that the decision to dissolve the rebel faction was taken after detailed consultations with the taluka, district and state-level functionaries of R S S Goa Prant.
But Velingkar said they would continue to support Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM) and its demand to stop grant-in-aid to church-run English medium primary schools, which was the main bone of contention between the rebel faction and BJP. He also assured full support to BBSM's political wing, Goa Suraksha Manch (GSM).
Around 90% of the swayamsevaks had moved out under Velingkar.
Velingkar said he revolted to send a clear message to BJP that Sangh members should not be taken for granted. “They have realised that if the Sangh decides to succumb to BJP pressure, all Sangh members will not stand behind them.“
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (R S S): Goa