Manohar Parrikar has cheated Hindus, says former Goa RSS chief

New Delhi: Smriti Kak Ramchandran, A day after he was removed from his post, former RSS Goa unit chief Subhash Velingkar on

Thursdayaccused defence minister Manohar Parrikar of “cheating the Hindus” in the state.Velingkar, who has been critical of the ruling BJP, was relieved apparently over plans to launch a party. He held his post in the RSS, a right-wing organisation considered the ideological parent of the BJP, for nearly two decades.Velingkar, who denies having any political ambitions, told HT that he wants to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in a political battle. At least 400 RSS volunteers have already quit in his support , in a move that could raise concerns in the ruling BJP ahead of next year’s state elections.Hindus who put their faith in the BJP and Parrikar, a former Goa chief minister and the BJP’s most prominent face in the state, feel “cheated”, Velingkar told HT over phone.“When we began the struggle for preservation of Indian languages — Konkani, Marathi and others — that are listed in the eighth schedule of the Constitution during the Congress rule, Parrikar had promised that the schools run by the Dioceses will be shut, but now he is projecting himself as messiah of the minorities (Christians).”Velingkar, a former teacher who has been demanding education in mother tongue, said the RSS cadre was upset with Parrikar’s “intent to seek voting rights for minorities who have opted for dual citizenship”.He alleged Parrikar micromanages the administration of the state and has not allowed current chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar to withdraw grants to schools with English as the medium of instruction.“In no other BJP-ruled state are English medium schools given grants by the government.”Velingkar also said the cadre in the state was not pleased with the minority appeasement by the current dispensation.“Ahead

of the Lok Sabha polls, the Archbishop of Goa had campaigned extensively against the BJP and its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, portraying him negatively,” Velingkar said.He alleged he will not contest polls and remain coordinator for the faction of RSS workers who are part of his Bharatiya Bhasha Suraksha Manch (BBSM), which waved black flags at BJP chief Amit Shah recently.“We supported the BJP, because Parrikar assured us that he will accede to our demand. Now we will either support the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party — if it breaks ties with the BJP, or field independent candidates. We have learnt this from the Sangh not to compromise on principles,” Velingkar said.He ruled out reconciliation with the BJP — unless the party comes clean on promises. Velingkar’s take on the BJP came up for discussion at the meeting between party chief Shah and RSS brass in Madhya Pradesh.Though the RSS sacked him, Velingkar’s assertion that the Sangh still bats for his group might not be unfounded.The RSS statement announcing his removal said the group agrees with his demand to impart education in the mother tongue and “continues to support the cause of agitation in Goa by the BBSM”. It said his removal is solely based on his decision to contest polls.

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