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As blasts probe heat rises,tense RSS wants cadres to keep off trouble

With investigations into several terrorist bombings increasingly focusing on senior RSS functionaries,the Sangh has cautioned its cadre to stay away from misadventures....

With investigations into several terrorist bombings increasingly focusing on senior RSS functionaries,the Sangh has cautioned its cadre to stay away from misadventures. A purge appears to be already on — there are indications that four middle-level pracharaks laid off in Orissa,Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh recently had questionable connections.

Sources said the RSS brass fears that the Centre could go after it with political intentions. Sangh leaders who met for a brainstorming session in Jodhpur are believed to have mulled a mechanism to screen their functionaries — some sort of a detector that would weed out undesirable “fringe” elements who have entered the organisation.

The bigger worry for the Sangh is the beating that its image has taken. In meetings with top BJP functionaries over the last two days,the RSS sent out the message that it wants the party to counter the accumulating charges and suspicion politically. “RSS leaders feel the government might misuse the CBI and go after it,” a senior BJP leader told The Indian Express.

The RSS’s concern seems to have been triggered by the interrogation of two senior functionaries from Uttar Pradesh — Ashok Beri and Ashok Varshney — in connection with the 2007 Mecca Masjid bombing. This was first reported by The Indian Express on June 30. The Indian Express was also the first to report the Hindu extremist angle to the Malegaon bombings,and subsequently,similar disclosures in the Mecca Masjid and Ajmer Dargah blast cases.

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BJP leaders,however,feel there is no immediate cause for panic. There has been no deliberate attempt by investigators to implicate the RSS as an organisation,they say. “So far we haven’t seen any attempt similar to that of Gujarat,” said a BJP leader,referring to the “misuse” of the CBI to target the Narendra Modi government in cases like the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter.

BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said “the party condemns all acts of terror” irrespective of who is responsible for them.

First published on: 09-07-2010 at 04:35:18 am
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