Pranab Mukherjee attends Haryana BJP’s event; denies association with RSS

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In the midst of rumours that former President Pranab Mukherjee’s establishment ‘Pranab Mukherjee Foundation’ might unite with RSS in Haryana, former Congressman inaugurated projects under the ‘Smartgram Yojana’ on Sunday in Gurugram. He shared the tribune with Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, reported The Indian Express.

In 2016, Mukherjee adopted villages in Alipur, Daula, Harchandpur, Tajpur and Roz Ka Meo (in Mewat) under the ‘Smartgram Yojana’. The aim was to ensure affordable and better-living conditions in the rural areas.

In his speech on Sunday Mukherjee said, “They are aimed to transform villages into happy, harmonious and hi-tech villages, by connecting the villagers with the initiative,” The Indian Express quoted the former President of India as saying.

A statement was issued by Mukherjee’s office on Saturday confirming his Gurugram visit to launch several projects initiated by the BJP government. It read, “He (Pranab Mukherjee) will be visiting Gurgaon at the invitation of the government of Haryana on September 2, 2018, to inaugurate projects started during the last two years along with ML Khattar, the Chief Minister.”

Amidst the speculations that ‘Pranab Mukherjee Foundation’ will join hands with the RSS in Haryana to initiate various projects, Mukherjee’s office clarified in a statement saying, “there have been reports in certain sections of the Media suggesting that the Pranab ‘Mukherjee Foundation (PMF) may collaborate with RSS in Haryana’. It is categorically clarified that there is neither any existing collaboration nor is there any such move in the offing.”

Mukherjee’s proximity with the RSS had raised eyebrows earlier when he attended an RSS event in Nagpur in June. He was seen sharing the stage with RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and other RSS stalwarts. Even his daughter Sharmistha along with other Congressmen had criticised his decision to attend the event.

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