Panaji: At a confidential meeting, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat interacted with cadres in south Goa and also met Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, drawing a sharp reaction from opposition Congress which termed the visit as a "threat to the secular fabric of the state".
Bhagwat yesterday addressed a gathering of around 250 volunteers in Margao town and also met Parrikar at a different location in the district, RSS sources said today.
"His (Bhagwat`s) visit was kept secret and even local police were informed only after the RSS chief landed at Dabolim airport," they said.
The visit assumes significance in the run up to the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
BJP state unit president Vinay Tendulkar, too, met the RSS chief but the party maintained that the meeting was non-political.
"Some of the BJP leaders are also RSS members. They must have met him (Bhagwat) in their individual capacity. RSS is like a cultural wing of BJP," said state BJP spokesperson, Dr Wilfred Mesquita.
Tendulkar could not be reached for comments.
However, Congress termed the RSS chief`s visit to Goa a threat to the secular fabric of the state.
"Bhagwat`s presence in Goa and the various indoor conclaves he had, including the one in which Parrikar participated on Monday, is a dangerous signal to the state in terms of retaining its secular fabric," said Congress Rajya Sabha MP and AICC secretary-in-charge of Karnataka, Shantaram Naik, in a press statement.
As RSS is the ideological mentor of BJP, there is no doubt that the BJP`s manifesto for the upcoming elections will carry the RSS stamp, he said.
"BJP has been taken over by RSS and all its organisational functions are performed under the instructions of RSS. As BJP`s national presidents are appointed at the behest of RSS, there`s no doubt that BJP`s manifesto as well as candidates for Lok Sabha polls will be decided by RSS," Naik added.