New Delhi, Feb 24: Terming the RSS as the "dominant force" controlling the central government, the Congress Tuesday demanded that Prime Minister Narendra Modi "unequivocally" condemn Mohan Bhagwat's conversion remarks regarding Mother Teresa.
"RSS is the dominant force which controls the Modi government... the prime minister can't pretend that the BJP has nothing to do with the RSS," Congress spokesperson Sanjay Jha told IANS.
He added that the prime minister should not cite it as an excuse to evade speaking on Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) chief Bhagwat's observation that the service of Mother Teresa for the destitute was laced with an "ulterior" motive of religious conversions.
Bhagwat, while addressing a function of NGO near Rajasthan's Bharatpur city Monday, said: "People like Mother Teresa did good work and service. But the aim was to convert the poor to Christianity. This kind of service is devalued if conversions are done in the name of service or work."
Jha demanded that "the government must condemn the statement in unequivocal and unambiguous way on the floor of parliament" that got off to a rocky start Tuesday with the opposition, taking a strong view of Bhagwat's remark.
Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati also strongly condemned the statement Tuesday, calling it "extremely shameful" to think that Mother Teresa had been doing social service with a motive to convert the needy to Christianity.
Nearly a week after Modi reached out to the Christian community to assure them of his government's commitment to "complete freedom of faith", Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh's (RSS) chief Bhagwat stirred a controversy Monday in contradiction to prime minister's stand.
Finding the remark "extremely repugnant", Jha said Bhagwat's talk of Hindu Rashtra (Hindu nation) is a reminder that Modi's assurance to the Christian community was "immaterial and insignificant".
"The RSS is in a great hurry to push its agenda of a Hindu Rashtra as anti-minority sentiment is in their DNA," the Congress spokesperson added.