RSS calls off shakhas, day after PM Modi’s message on social distancing over Covid-19
RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat suggested that prayers can be held in smaller groups of 5-7 or within families.Updated: Mar 25, 2020 11:36 IST
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat on Wednesday said Sangh volunteers should ensure that the government’s call for maintaining social distancing to prevent the spread of novel coronavirus (Covid-19) is adhered to.
In his address to the cadres, Bhagwat said, “In these unprecedented times, when the entire world is grappling with the pandemic, volunteers must ensure that they do not break the protocols announced by the government.”
A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a 21-day lockdown, Bhagwat said India is also fighting the war with other countries and the Sangh volunteers are duty bound to contribute to the steps being taken to combat the spread of Covid-19.
“We have to continue our work, but also stick to the rules. In the past, shakhas were closed for two years, but work went on. The 21-day lockdown has to be adhered to and our work can also go on,” he said.
The RSS has called off its shakhas, or daily units, where volunteers congregate for prayers and other activities because of the pandemic.
Bhagwat suggested that prayers can be held in smaller groups of five-seven within families. “In such unprecedented times, we can do this. We will adhere to the steps being taken by the administration in the fight against the pandemic,” he said.
The RSS chief also said that Sangh’s volunteers are already helping the government in relief work.
“It may be possible that we will be required to scale up our efforts; whatever is required wherever, will be done in keeping with the rules,” he said.
Sangh volunteers in several districts have begun helping distribute masks, clean up hospitals and distribute food to the poor and needy.
“Medicines and other essential items are there, but to break the chain of spread we need to make social distancing a success. It is the responsibility of society, it is the duty of the Sangh to stick to discipline and we have to follow this as well,” Bhagwat added.