Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) has supported its chief Mohan Bhagwat's controversial statement against Nobel laureate Mother Teresa and alleged that money comes to missions like Missionaries of Charity from various organizations.
RSS spokesperson and former Sangh chief MG Vaidhya backed Bhagwat's remarks on Mother Teresa and suggested that the work the missionaries were suspect.
In a tweet, the RSS accused the media of wrongly reporting the matter and distorting facts about Bhagwat's remarks. "At Bharatpur Ex DG BSF said that Mother Teresa did Seva with motive of conversion In reply Bhagavatji said let Mother Teresa know her motive for Seva, we do Seva without expecting any returns," (sic) said Vaidya.
The Opposition has lashed out at Bhagwat for his remark. The Congress said the Sangh Parivar says one thing while the PM says another. Party MP Ashwani Kumar said, "This is just an attempt to confuse people, hide real issues and polarise communities. We will bring a calling attention motion, raise Mohan Bhagwat's comments in Parliament and outside."
He said Indians should take pride on Mother Teresa's work rather than make such comments.
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Yogendra Yadav too objected to Bhagwat's statement and said the minority of the country are not dependent on the ruling party.
Sunita Kumar of Missionaries of Charity rued the remark and said, "Sadly, Mr Bhagwat is misinformed. Mother believed in all faith, there was never any attempt to convert, the tradition continues even today. We are not worried with about the RSS chief's comment, we have nothing to hide, we live in peace."
Bhagwat's comment has come under fire for his controversial statement against Mother Teresa by saying, "Mother Teresa may have done a lot of social service but she had motives behind doing that."
The opposition parties hit out at the RSS and demanded answer from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Upping the ante against Bhagwat and condemning his remarks, TMC MP Derek O'Brien said, "The statement made by RSS chief is totally condemnable. What will the one who wears pinstripe say to the one who wears khakis?"
Newly elected Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal also said, "I worked wid Mother Teresa for a few months at Nirmal Hriday ashram in Kolkata. She was a noble soul. Please spare her."
Even CPI backed TMC and its party leader Atul Anjan said, "Such statements hurt India's image in the world. What bravery is Bhagwat showing by making such statements?"
While speaking at a function organised by NGO Apna Ghar near Bharatpur, Bhagwat said, "Mother Teresa's service would have been good. But it used to have one objective, to convert the person, who was being served, into a Christian. The question is not about conversion but if this (conversion) is done in the name of service, then that service gets devalued."
Delhi Catholic Archdiocese Father Savarimuthu added, "It is a sad statement. Mother Teresa had dedicated her life to the destitute."