On Monday, a section of Congress leaders were surprised when they saw a battery of BJP leaders and Union ministers, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, wishing party vice-president Rahul Gandhi on his 47th birthday. Modi was, in fact, ahead of many others, including many Congress leaders, in greeting the Amethi MP. Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya, Union ministers Ram Vilas Paswan and Jayant Sinha were among those who wished Rahul. The Congress leader promptly thanked the leaders.
The RSS is trying to make its presence in the India International Centre (IIC), the adda of top intellectuals and scholars. In April, one of Sangh’s affiliate organisations organised a four-day seminar on Sangh icon Deendayal Upadhyaya at the IIC, which drew sharp objections from the participants on why Upadhyaya’s works were discussed in “English” at the “Leftist bastion”. This Wednesday, another Sangh affiliate, Indraprastha Vishwa Samvad Kendra, is scheduled to hold its annual Narad Samman, an award for journalists, at the IIC. Accompanied by Sangh leaders, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan will give away the awards.