NEW DELHI: In tune with the changing times, Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the 90-year-old ideological fountainhead of the BJP, has gone in for a makeover. The Sangh has decided to replace its trademark khaki shorts with full-length brown trousers to attract more youngsters to its fold.
The change was announced by the Akhil Bhartiya Pratinidhi Sabha, the RSS’ highest decision-making body, at the end of a crucial three-day meeting in Nagaur, Rajasthan on Sunday. The trademark khaki had characterised the RSS ever since its inception in 1925. The new makeover will come into effect in the next 4-6 months.
The makeover was in the offing as the Sangh had been receiving suggestions for changing the traditional khaki keeping in mind sensibilities of the new generation, which, the RSS says, is flocking to its shakhas. As such, the decision is seen as part of an attempt to increase the organisation’s membership as khaki shorts is believed to have been a hindrance in this regard. There has been no other change in the dress code.
“We always move with the times. We are not rigid. No organisation which is not flexible cannot progress,” RSS general secretary Suresh Bhayyaji Joshi told reporters at the conclusion of the meeting. Small changes have been taking place in the RSS but this is the change which is noticeable, he added. Initially till 1940, the uniform of the RSS was khaki shirt and shorts before white shirts were introduced. Leather shoes replaced long boots in 1973 and later, rexine shoes were allowed. “Pants are a regular feature in today’s social life, so we took our decision accordingly... We are not orthodox.
We realise the importance of time. We have changed many things from time to time. But this time, a major change has come,” Joshi said. The pants will be designed in such a manner that these are comfortable for physical exercises, he explained.
Asked why they chose the brown colour, Joshi replied there was no specific reason for it except that it is commonly available and looks good. The changes will have no adverse impact or any identification problem for RSS volunteers, he underlined. RSS member Rakesh Sinha also pointed out that the choice of the people is a priority for the RSS.