RSS chief was aware of Samjhauta blast

Terror accused Swami Aseemanand’s claim that RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat had prior knowledge of the Samjhauta Express blast has triggered a war or words between the Congress and the Sangh Parivar.

Aseemanand claimed in an interview to Caravan magazine that BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi had offered him help after he was cornered by erstwhile Union Home Minister L K Advani and Gujarat chief minister Keshubhai Patel.  Aseemanand, who is lodged in the Ambala Jail, said that his acts were sanctioned by top RSS leaders. He quoted Bhagwat as saying: “It is very important that it be done. But you should not link it to the Sangh.”

Aseemanand said Modi offered help after Advani intervened and asked Patel to rein him in. “I know what Keshubhai is doing to you. Swamiji, there is no comparison to what you are doing. You are doing the real work. Now it has been decided that I will be the chief minister,”Aseemanand quoted Modi as saying.  The Sangh Parivar questioned the credibility of the interview and called it a Congress conspiracy. Senior RSS leader Ram Madhav said the interview was “concocted”.

The magazine has released audio tapes of Aseemanand’s interviews.  Caravan Executive Editor Vinod K Jose said the interviews were done with full consent of Aseemanand. “There is no sting operation or entrapment. Instead of attacking the messenger, they should look at the message. Allegations against Mohan Bhagwat are very serious. We wouldn’t mind being dragged to court for the sake of truth,” he told Deccan Herald.

Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said: “Let’s go into what he said. If he has made some expose, it may be true.” External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said the truth should come out. 

 BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad said, “It is the work of the dirty tricks department of the Congress before elections.” 

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