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Published On: Fri, Jun 8th, 2018

Morphed picture of Pranab Mukherjee giving RSS-style salute goes viral

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08pranabNEW DELHI : The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) on June 8 blamed “divisive political forces” for first trying to make former President Pranab Mukherjee “refrain” from attending its event and then for posting a morphed photograph showing him in a prayer position identified with the organisation.

“Some divisive political forces have posted a morphed photo of former President Dr. Pranab Mukherjee standing in a prayer position with a folded hand during recitation of Sangha prarthana (prayer) at yesterday’s RSS function at Nagpur,” the organisation’s joint general secretary, Manmohan Vaidya, said in a statement.

We derive our strength from tolerance, says Pranab at RSS event
“These forces initially tried to create an opposition to make Mukherjee refrain from attending this function and now these frustrated forces are indulging in all such dirty tricks to defame the RSS. We denounce and strongly condemn the lowly act of these divisive political forces who are deliberately trying to defame the RSS,” he said.
Mr. Mukherjee’s daughter Sharmistha Mukherjee, a Congress leader who opposed his visit to the RSS event, had highlighted the photograph and said, “See, this is exactly what I was fearing & warned my father about. Not even few hours have passed, but BJP/RSS dirty tricks dept is at work in full swing!”.

The RSS on Friday strongly condemned a morphed picture of former President Pranab Mukherjee wearing a black coloured Sangh cap and giving an RSS-style salute. The image has gone viral on social media platforms after Pranab Mukherjee attended an RSS event amid criticism by several Congress leaders including his own daughter.
In a statement issued by Sah Sarkaryavah Manmohan Vaidya, the RSS said that they denounce and strongly condemn the lowly act of these divisive political forces who are deliberately trying to defame RSS.
“Some divisive political forces have posted a morphed photo of a former president of Bharat, Dr.Pranab Mukherjee standing in a prayer position with a folded hand during a recitation of Sangha Prarthana at yesterday’s RSS function at Nagpur. These forces initially tried to create an opposition to make Dr.Mukherjee refrain from attending this function and now these frustrated forces are indulging in all such dirty tricks to defame RSS,” reads the statement.

 

While the Sangh is often described as a Hindu right-wing organisation, it calls itself a nationalist and cultural organisation rather than a political or religious one. It was founded by Keshav Baliram Hedgewar , on September 27, 1925 on Vijayadashami day at his house here.
Pranab Mukherjee’s daughter Sharmistha who had already cautioned him before the speech, on Thursday late night said her fears had been affirmed after a morphed picture showing the former president raising his hand in salutation, like RSS leaders and cadres, appeared on social media.
Addressing the RSS event, Mukherjee warned that any attempt to define India through “religion, dogma or intolerance” will only dilute the country’s existence, as he attended an RSS event amid criticism by several of his party leaders including his own daughter.

Mukherjee said intolerance will only dilute India’ national identity and Indian nationalism emanated from universalism, assimilation and co-existence.”In India, we derive our strength from tolerance, and respect our pluralism. We celebrate our diversity,” he said.
(With Agency Inputs).

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