With the BJP’s infighting and internal rifts reaching a flashpoint, the RSS apparently no longer wants to depend on its political outfit and has decided to take over the reins from the party and carry out an extensive expansion programme across the state. The decision to reorganise the structural design at the grass-root level was taken during RSS chief Mohan Bhagwats visit to the state a couple of days ago.
As a part of the new organisational module the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) has decided to recruit nearly 1000 whole-timers in the party.
“In the rural areas where there is a panchayat system one whole-timer or ‘Pracharak’ will be recruited in each Gram Panchayat (Mandal). In the municipal and corporation areas there will be one whole-timer in each ward,” RSS spokesperson Biplab Roy said.
Being a full-timer is not a new thing in Bengal politics. The whole-timers in the Left parties not only carried out the policies and the responsibilities entrusted to them to the grass-root level but provided the party a detailed demographic and socio-political map of the particular area which in turn helped the party in formulating its strategies.
Though the design of the Left parties was clearly spelt out, it is still not clear what will be the exact responsibility of the ‘Pracharaks’ in the RSS. When asked about it, a senior state leader of the RSS said: “There are some areas where we have worked extensively and there are some areas where we are yet to reach out to the people. In the places where we have a presence the Pracharaks will work to strengthen the organisation and in the places where we are yet to have a footmark the Pracharaks will work as our representatives and implement the philosophy of the organisation. People need to know us before they accept us.”
The decision to reorganise the organisation in the state percolates out of an important organisational meet that took place in Dharwad in Karnataka this October. According to senior members of the party, the Sangh has a target to add around 700 more shakhas (branches) to its existing network of 1,900 shakhas in West Bengal by 2024. The decision is part of the discussions between members and Sarsanghchalak (chief) Mohan Bhagwat during his visit to the state.
A second project that the RSS intends to work on is to discover and highlight the role of unsung heroes in the freedom struggle. Also, the institutions and places that played an important part in the freedom struggle will be brought out and presented before the people. Sangh members have also been instructed to initiate or encourage training that helps people earn a livelihood.
The Sangh during its two-day ‘Chintan Programme’ has suggested that the younger members be assigned a two-year responsibility, and seniors to take days off from work, as and when needed, for the campaign. “Sangh is not different from society and we need to sync with the social movement,” they added.
Political analysts believe that with the corporation and municipal elections round the corner the decision to reorganise the mother organisation of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is an effort to regain the ground that has been lost after the assembly polls in the state. “The Sangh has already carved out a new zone in March this year spreading its activities into three zones instead of two. It is expected that the Sangh will be spreading its network keeping in mind the Lok Sabha elections in 2024,” a political analyst said.