Pranab Mukherjee's daughter warns him of 'consequences' of attending RSS event

Former president Pranab Mukherjee accepting the invite from the RSS has generated a lot of interest as well as controversy, with Congress leaders urging him not to attend the event in the 'interest of secularism'. 

Pranab Mukherjee's daughter warns him of 'consequences' of attending RSS event
Pic courtesy: PTI

New Delhi: Former president Pranab Mukherjee's daughter and Congress leader Sharmistha Mukherjee on Wednesday disapproved of his decision to addresses a Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) event in Nagpur. She tweeted saying that he was giving the BJP and the Sangh a handle to plant false stories, as his "speech will be forgotten" but the "visuals will remain".

Sharmistha's outburst came soon after rumours about her joining the BJP cropped up ahead of Pranab Mukherjee's speech in Nagpur on Thursday. She dismissed such "rumours" of her joining the BJP as "false" and alleged they were the handiwork of BJP's "dirty tricks department". Sharmistha said she would rather leave politics than quit the Congress.

Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken also rejected such suggestions, saying Sharmistha was a "devoted" Congress person.

Sharmistha hoped that the former president would realise how the BJP's "dirty tricks department" works and said that with his visit, he was giving the BJP and the RSS "full handle to plant false stories".

She also warned her father of the consequences of attending such a meet. "Even the RSS wouldn't believe that you are going to endorse its views in your speech. By going to Nagpur, you are giving BJP/RSS full handle to plant false stories, spread falls rumours as today and making it somewhat believable. And this is just the beginning," Sharmistha said. 

The former president's official Twitter handle is @CitiznMukherjee. 

Sharmistha, who is president of Mahila Congress as well as in-charge of the communication department of Delhi unit, had joined the party in 2014. She had also contested Delhi Assembly elections from Greater Kailash seat in 2015 and lost to AAP leader Saurabh Bhardwaj.

Pranab Mukherjee arrived in Nagpur on Wednesday to attend Thursday's RSS event. He will attend the valedictory function of the 'Sangh Shiksha Varg' at the headquarters of the Sangh fountainhead.

Mukherjee accepting the invite from the RSS has generated a lot of interest as well as controversy, with Congress leaders urging him not to attend the event in the "interest of secularism".

Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram said that since Pranab Mukherjee has accepted the invitation, he should go and tell the RSS "what is wrong" in their ideology. Ramesh Chennithala, a senior Congress leader from Kerala, sent a letter to the former president, requesting him to refrain from attending the event. Chennithala, also a leader of the opposition in Kerala assembly, had said that Pranab Mukherjee's decision had come as a "rude shock" to the secular minds of the country.

West Bengal Congress chief Adhir Chowdhury and senior Congress leader V Hanumantha Rao too had urged Pranab Mukherjee not to attend the event. And, Hanumantha Rao, the AICC Secretary and former Rajya Sabha member, said that the former president should withdraw his decision" in the interest of secularism". Veteran Congressman CK Jaffer Sharief also wrote to Pranab Mukherjee, expressing surprise over the move and had said that he, like other secular people, was "stunned" to hear about his attending the RSS function. 

(With PTI inputs)

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