“Preparing an army takes six to seven months but we [RSS cadres] will be battle ready in two-three days...this is our capability and discipline that marks us apart,” said Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat at a meeting of the organisation in Muzaffarpur on Sunday.
He clarified that “ours is not a military or paramilitary organisation but our discipline is just like them.”
Mr Bhagwat is on a 10-day tour of Bihar to meet RSS workers, farmers and farm activists from the State and Jharkhand.
While recalling the attack by China in 1962, Mr. Bhagwat claimed that it was RSS volunteers who stood till the army reached there. He exhorted RSS volunteers to attend the Shakha daily and “enlist one new RSS member every year.”
Amid speculation that he is visiting Bihar in view of the coming 2019 general election, he said he had come for the RSS. “I keep visiting across the country for the RSS expansion,” he added.
Later, Mr. Bhagwat reached Patna in the evening and addressed RSS workers at a field in Rajendra Nagar locality. He said, “We have to live and die for the country. If we disunite, it will pose a problem for the country. It is only because of our disunity, others have ruled us.”
Vaidya clarifies remarks
Clarifying Mr. Bhagwat's remarks, Akhil Bharatiya Prachaar Pramukh Manmohan Vaidya said, "Bhagwat ji said that if situation arises and the Constitution permits, the Indian Army would take six months to prepare society, whereas Sangh swayamsevaks can be trained in three days, as Swayamsevaks practise discipline regularly. This was no way a comparison between the Indian Army and the Sangh swayamsevaks but it was a comparison between general society and swayamsevaks. Both are to be trained by the Indian Army only."
Rahul sees 'insult' to Army
Reacting to Mr. Bhagwat's remarks. Congress president Rahul Gandhi tweeted: “The RSS Chief's speech is an insult to every Indian, because it disrespects those who have died for our nation. It is an insult to our flag because it insults every soldier who ever saluted it. Shame on you Mr Bhagwat, for disrespecting our martyrs and our Army.”
Mr. Bhagwat is scheduled to leave for Varanasi from Patna on February 15.