Pranab Mukherjee
The Congress seems to be divided over former President Pranab Mukherjee accepting the RSS invitation | Twitter
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While senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram disapproves of the idea, Abhishek Singhvi sees no harm in it.

New Delhi: The Congress seems to be divided over former President Pranab Mukherjee accepting an invitation by the RSS to an event in Nagpur.

Senior Congress leader P. Chidambaram said Wednesday that had he been invited he wouldn’t have accepted it.

“Now since he has accepted the invitation, the debate shouldn’t not be whether he is right or wrong in accepting it,” Chidambaram said during the launch of the book Straight Talk, written by his party colleague Abhishek Manu Singhvi, in Delhi.

“Now when you have accepted it, sir please go and tell them what is wrong with their ideology,” the former union minister added.

Replying to the same question, Singhvi completely deferred from what Chidambaram said. “It is wrong to judge someone by the invitation he accepts,” Singhvi said.

“He has 60 years of public life. Unless we listen to someone we should not make opinion,” he added.

Singhvi even said that a few years ago he was invited to write for RSS mouthpiece Organiser and Panchjanya and he “happily wrote for these publications”.

“I wrote about our ideology and how they should learn from us. It was very well accepted within the party except some snipers who are there in every party,” the noted lawyer said.

There has been a debate after Mukherjee accepted an invitation to visit the headquarters of the RSS — the BJP’s ideological parent — and address workers on 7 June. Mukherjee shares a good rapport with RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and the duo had met at Rashtrapati Bhavan on several occasions.

It was then that the RSS chief had extended an invitation to Mukherjee to address the workers in Nagpur. But being the President, he refused the invitation.

Later, during the last Parliament session, the efforts from the RSS were revived, arguing that since now Mukherjee has demitted office, he can be the chief guest in Nagpur. After some persuasion from the RSS, Mukherjee gave his consent last week.

Straight Talk, a collection of Singhvi’s articles and thoughts on various subjects, was released by Vice-President Venkaiah Naidu and former PM Manmohan Singh.

Apart from Chidambaram, Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia, DMK leader Kanimozhi and Trinamool Congress leader Dinesh Trivedi were also present at the event.

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