MUMBAI: A major organisational change in the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and its affiliates is on the cards during its annual Akhil Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha (ABPS) – the highest decision making body of the RSS - meeting at Nagpur next week.
Around 1,500 representatives of the RSS and affiliate organisations elect the Sarkaryavah (General Secretary) of the RSS at the ABPS meet every three years.
Now in his 70s, current Sarkaryavah Suresh aka Bhaiyaji Joshi was first elected to the post in 2009. During the past two years, due to health reasons, he had shared part of his work with Saha-Sarkaryavah (Joint General Secretary) Dattatreya Hosabale.
At the ABPS meeting next week, Joshi is likely to formally pass the baton to Hosabale (63).
While the Sarasanghachalak is the head of the RSS, the Sarkaryavah is the executive head who also steers other organisations in the RSS family. The position becomes crucial with the general elections barely a year away.
Though the Sarkaryavah is elected, the Sarasanghachalak is not. He is nominated by the outgoing chief and can hold the position for life. There have been exceptions when some of them abdicated to infuse fresh blood in the leadership matrix.
A senior RSS functionary in the national executive team, who didn’t want to be named, said Hosabale’s elevation was on the cards for a long time. He, however, chose to keep his fingers crossed. “The ABPS meet is at Nagpur between March 9 and 11 and whatever changes are there would be known only on March 11,” he said.
Several other changes too are expected, like inter- and intra-organisational transfers of the organising secretaries. Major changes in organising secretaries of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are likely to be announced. Sunil Ambekar, the national organising secretary of ABVP who hails from Nagpur and has worked in Gujarat for several years, is likely to be transferred to the BJP while BJP’s organising secretary Ramlal, who has several health issues, is likely return to the parent RSS fold.
The Maharashtra BJP too is on the lookout for an organising secretary after Ravindra Bhusari resigned last June. His successor could be named during the meet.
Lateral entrant from Vidyarthi Parishad
Dattatreya Hosabale, who hails from Sorab in Karnataka’s Shimoga district, started off as a full time worker of the ABVP before becoming its national head. He was later laterally inducted into the RSS and grew in stature.