MP: Cong, BJP spar over the participation of govt officials in RSS event
Satna district collector and the city civic body commissioner took part in the programme of the RSS and saluted its flag.
A war of words has broken out between the opposition Congress and ruling BJP after a picture surfaced of some government officials attending a function of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) in Madhya Pradesh's Satna district.
While a Congress parliamentarian demanded that such officials be kept away from preparations of the MP Assembly polls due this year-end, a state Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader said this only shows the Congress's "hatred" for the RSS.
The picture shows Satna District Collector Anurag Verma and Satna Municipal Corporation Commissioner Rajesh Shahi participating in a prayer during a programme of the RSS organised on June 11.
State Congress media department chairman KK Mishra, who tweeted the picture, told PTI on Tuesday that the Satna district collector and the city civic body commissioner took part in the programme of the RSS and saluted its flag.
“It can't be expected that such officials will perform their duty without any bias in the Assembly polls, which are due later this year. Their behaviour is against the conduct meant for civil servants," Mishra claimed.
"We are going to make a complaint to the Centre's Department of Personnel and Training,” he added.
Congress Rajya Sabha member Vivek Tankha demanded that the Election Commission of India keep such leaders away from preparations of the Assembly polls.
However, BJP state secretary Rajneesh Agrawal told PTI that there was no violation of the code of conduct by the officials.
“Taking part in an RSS event is not illegal or unconstitutional and doesn't violate the code of conduct. The RSS, which works under constitutional arrangements, is a democratic, social and cultural organisation. It is the fault of the Congress if it sees any organisation with hatred, and not the officials,” Agrawal said.
There is no basis of action (as sought by the Congress) against these officials under law, he said.
“This is purely a Congress agenda of hatred. Several professionals, bureaucrats and people associated with the judiciary work with the RSS,” Agrawal said..
The picture was of a function of the Sangh Shiksha Varg organised on June 11. Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) vice president Achchhelal Kushwaha was the chief guest at the programme.
Satna Collector Verma earlier said he was present at the programme as per the protocol because several dignitaries, including ministers, were present at the event.