Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat on Wednesday refused to comment on corruption allegations against Bharatiya Janata Party [ Images ] president Nitin Gadkari [ Images ], saying it was an "internal matter of the party".
Asked about the charges against the BJP chief, Bhagwat said, "It is a matter of the party".
"I have already touched on the issue of corruption (in general) in my speech and if you want to know more, you can speak to Manmohan Vaidya, the prachar pramukh (spokesperson) of the organisation," he told reporters after addressing RSS workers at the annual Vijayadashmi function.
Vaidya said the allegations of corruption against Gadkari "are in the media only".
"A media trial is going on and the concerned person (Gadkari) will put forth his views before the party," he said.
Gadkari, who attended the function in the RSS attire, left the venue without talking to the media.
Media reports have raised questions over the source of funds for Purti Power and Sugar Ltd controlled by Gadkari. Media investigations claim that major investments and large loans to Purti were made by a construction firm Ideal Road Builders group, which had won contracts between 1995 and 1999, when Gadkari was the public works department minister in Maharashtra [ Images ].
Gadkari has denied the allegations and offered himself and his companies to any probe.
Earlier, during his speech, Bhagwat said Sangh "continues to concentrate in its work of character building and people should be made aware of the need to change the system, ensuring that they do not develop an aversion towards it."
"The mind-boggling revelations of corruption have not come to an end yet. Many small and big agitations are being conducted to demand punishment to the corrupt, to bring back black money stashed away in foreign banks and for making stringent laws to curb corruption," he said.
On the "seven social sins" quoted by Mahatma Gandhi [ Images ] in the "Young India [ Images ]" issue in 1922, Bhagwat said, "We cannot become free of fault by leaving all the responsibility to
politics, government and the administration."
These sins are politics without principles, wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity and worship without sacrifice, he said.
On the Kashmir issue, Bhagwat said the area currently under the occupation of Pakistan should be liberated.
"Discrimination shown in the administrative and development matters in Jammu, Leh, Ladakh and Kashmir Valley must be stopped forthwith and these areas must be brought at par with other regions in the country," he said.
Conditions should be made favourable and secure for those Hindus who were forced to flee their homes, so that they come back to the valley with honour, he said.
"Those who took shelter in Jammu and Kashmir [ Images ] at the time of partition should be granted state citizenship, but the policies adopted are further complicating the situation," the RSS chief said.
"The power-crazy political parties ruling the states and Centre continue to ignore national interests and are succumbing to pressures of foreign forces. It appears from the prevalent situation in the eastern part of the nation that we have not learnt any lessons from our grim situation in the northern parts caused by the progressive depletion of nationalist Hindu population due to historical processes," he added.
"The infiltrators should be identified and their names should be deleted from the voters' list and ration cards. A national register should be maintained as per the court guidelines to record details like the place of birth of citizens," he added.
"If all the Hindus are forced to flee their land because of persecution, they will have no place to live. Therefore no Hindu, from wherever he comes, should be considered a foreigner," he said.