18 May, 2021

An Old Swayamsevak's Dilemma

The PM is torn between the RSS and his compulsions of office

An Old Swayamsevak's Dilemma
Is Atal Behari Vajpayee a closet RSS supporter? That, at least, is the Opposition allegation. "He represents the covert side of the RSS; he adopts the latent posture of the RSS, leaving the potent agenda to the others," says Congress leader Kamal Nath. In fact, the combined Opposition's current attack on the prime minister is predicated on this view, aimed at driving a wedge between the BJP and its allies in the NDA. And there has been a history of what critics term Vajpayee's "compromises" with the Sangh:
  • In the '70s, when forced to choose between the Janata regime and his RSS membership, Vajpayee went with the Sangh.
  • Soon after the formation of the BJP in 1980, Vajpayee's 'Gandhian socialism' was dumped under pressure from the RSS.
  • At the BJP's Palampur plenary in 1989, resolutions were passed accepting the Shiv Sena as an ally...

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