The curious case of Jaffer Sharief’s ties with RSS

The curious case of Jaffer Sharief’s ties with RSS

Congress leaders Verendra Patil, R Gundu Rao, C K Jaffer Sharif and others welcomes former prime minister Indira Gandhi at HAL airport in Bengaluru on 31-1-1982 (DH File Photo/T L Ramaswamy)

Senior Congress leader and former Railway Minister C K Jaffer Sharief enjoyed a cordial relationship with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

Sharief, on several occasions, had stated that he attended the shakha of RSS during his younger days and respected the discipline imbibed among the volunteers.

Sharief considered RSS ideologue H V Sheshadri as one of his mentors and was the first to pay homage when the Hindu nationalist passed away in 2005. He was sometimes criticised by his fellow Congressmen over his love for the RSS. But, he did not seem to mind.

In April 2017, Sharief stunned political circles, when he backed RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat for the post of President.

“Whoever becomes the President will have to function according to the Constitution. What is wrong if Bhagwat becomes the President and works according to the Constitution,” he had asked.

“RSS expresses deep condolences on the sad demise of senior politician and former union minister Jaffer Sharief. He was well-known to many senior RSS functionaries and was supportive of social causes. May the departed soul attain Sadgati. May the Almighty give strength to his family to bear the loss,” V Nagaraj, Kshetra Sanghachalak, RSS, stated in his condolence message on Sunday.