Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Friday compared the RSS to the Muslim Brotherhood, a political Islamist group with strong presence in the Arab world, particularly Egypt, and said that the Sangh fountainhead wants one ideology to run through every single institution and crush all other ideas.
He also continued his criticism of Indian prime minister Narendra Modi’s foreign and economic policies, reports Indian Express.
Addressing an event at London’s International Institute of Strategic Studies, Rahul said Modi does not have a ‘deeply thought-out strategy’ on Pakistan but admitted that it is ‘very difficult’ to converse with Islamabad, as there is no single institution in that country that holds supremacy.
He said the standoff with China over Doklam was not an ‘isolated issue’ but part of a ‘sequence of events’, and that India could have stopped it had Modi been carefully watching the process.
The Congress chief is on a four-day tour of Germany and the United Kingdom, as part of his foreign trips that include talks at prestigious institutions, interactions with global thinkers and politicians, and addressing NRI gatherings.
During his interaction at the IISS, Rahul was asked about the lessons he has learnt from the Congress’s defeat in 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
He replied: ‘(Learnt the lesson) that you have to listen. That…leadership is about listening, about empathy to the person who is speaking regardless of whether you agree with him or not. That is at a personal level. At a party level, I think there was a certain degree of arrogance that had crept into the Congress party after 10 years of power. So never forget that the party is actually the people — that is a lesson for everybody in the Congress party.’
Elaborating, he said, ‘There is a design issue as well, which is that we are fighting an organisation called the RSS that is trying to change the nature of India. There is no other organisation in India that wants to capture India’s institutions.’
He said other parties, when they come to power, ‘do not try to attack and capture India’s institutions. What we are dealing with is a completely new idea.’
‘That is an old idea being reborn, and it is similar to the idea that exists in the Arab world with the Muslim Brotherhood. I would compare it. And the idea is that one ideology should run through every single institution, one idea should crush all other ideas.’
Rahul spoke about the unprecedented press conference held by four most senior judges of the Supreme Court earlier this year. ‘You see the response of four Supreme Court judges who came out and said (that) we are not being allowed to do our work. You see (former RBI governor) Raghuram Rajan and the shock of demonetisation. You can see India’s institutions being torn down one by one,’ he said.
Rahul said the idea of demonetisation also ‘came directly from the RSS, bypassed the Finance Minister and the Reserve Bank of India, and was planted in prime minister’s head’.
He said fighting the RSS requires a response that is more inclusive. ‘The response has to include everybody who values what India has achieved, everybody who values institutions of our country.’
Accompanied by party leaders Anand Sharma and Milind Deora, Rahul met the senior leadership of the Labour Party in London, which included the Shadow Cabinet members, who are the party’s top team in Parliament. Rahul also spoke at the Grand Committee Room of the UK Parliament, becoming the first foreign Leader of Opposition to do so.