Goa’s rebel RSS leader welcomes new state chief, harps on curbs

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Panaji, Sep 11 (IANS) Goa’s rebel RSS leader Subhash Velingkar on Sunday welcomed the appointment of a new state chief calling him a “good swayamsevak”, but also said that a section of Sangh workers in Goa was afraid to resist “unfair restrictions” imposed by the organisation’s leadership.

Speaking to reporters after addressing the first conclave of around 1,800 rebel RSS members near Panaji, Velingkar said the newly-appointed state RSS leader Lakhsman alias Nana Behare was supportive of his agitation against the BJP-led coalition government’s decision to allow government financial grants to schools where the medium of instruction is English.

“We follow all the teachings and philosophy of the Sangh. We have not opposed it and will not oppose it. But there is a section in the Sangh which is scared and is holding back. Sangh does not indulge in political work, like contesting elections. But there is no question of anyone of us contesting elections,” Velingkar said.

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“Nana Behare is a good swayamsevak, he is supportive of our agitation. If he wants to accept the restrictions, we have no problem,” he said.

Earlier this month, Velingkar had accused Defence Minister and former Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar of using his influence with the Sangh top brass and getting him sacked as the state RSS chief. Velingkar has also formed a parallel unit of the RSS in Goa, which has nominated him as the ‘sangha chalak’.

The RSS leader has consistently criticised the local BJP government for what he calls malgovernance and failure to keep promises, especially vis-a-vis doing away with government financial grants to primary schools, most of them run by Goa’s Catholic Church, where the medium of instruction is English.

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Velingkar told reporters that the restrictions imposed on him and the RSS members in Goa to not take a political stance — especially not to attack the BJP-led coalition government in Goa and Parrikar — were unfair.

“All of us are not willing to accept such restrictions imposed on us by the leadership. We were not asked to follow these restrictions when the Congress was in power and we were attacking them. But when there is a BJP government in power, they have put these restrictions on us,” Velingkar said.



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