New Delhi, July 8: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat said the Sangh considers affection for all an ideal, and that is why it felt no hesitation in inviting former President Pranab Mukherjee to its program.
"When he (Mukherjee) was with a party, he belonged to them (Congress), but when he became the President of the country, he belonged to the whole country. "We did not have any hesitation in inviting him, and he did not have any hesitation in coming. We all belong to one country, and we all should have Aatmiyata' for each other," Bhagwat said.
The RSS's decision to invite the former president to address its volunteers last month, and the latter's decision to accept the invitation, had raised many eyebrows, with some Congress leaders criticising Mukherjee.
Bhagwat was speaking at Prerna Vidyarthi Sammellan' organised by the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP).
A book on the life of late Dattaji Didolkar, the founder of ABVP, was unveiled on the occasion. Bhagwat extolled Didolkar as a selfless man who was accessible to everyone, and who had 'aatmiyata' (affection) towards everybody.
Union minister Nitin Gadkari was also present at the event. Gadkari too spoke about his interactions with Didolkar in his student days. Sunil Ambekar, the national organising secretary of the ABVP, announced on this occasion that the organisation will be starting "Selfie With Campus", an outreach program, this month, aiming to cover one lakh college campuses.