By Dr Aslam Abdullah

The news is that five Muslims had a spontaneous meeting with the head of the Rashtriya Swayam Sangh (RSS) in August at the organization’s headquarters in Delhi. Among the Muslims were the former Vice Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University, Lieutenant General (Retd.) Zameer Uddin Shah, former Chief Election Commissioner SY Quraishi, former Lieutenant Governor of Delhi Najeeb Jung, Rashtriya Lok Dal leader Shahid Siddiqui, and businessman Saeed Shervani. Two of them have already given selective information about the discussion contents.

Reliable sources suggest that the meeting was not spontaneous. On the contrary, it was well-planned with the explicit intention of giving legitimacy to the RSS politics and rhetoric and paving the path of the third term BJP government.

Several diplomatic channels and bureaucrats were in negotiations with Muslim participants at the non-official initiative of RSS leadership. In addition, Washington sources have confirmed that the state department was in contact with the RSS leadership, urging them to dialogue with Muslims. During the last three years, the US diplomatic channels have worked closely with several Hindu intellectuals to bring the RSS and Muslim leaders together. Most of these meetings have been off the record and secret.

Neither the RSS nor the Muslim leadership explained what happened in the meeting. However, the contents may become known after some time as officials at the RSS headquarters recorded the event. We understand that the RSS leader brought up three main issues of concern.

1. Growing Muslim population in India

2. Cow slaughter by Muslims

3. The use of the term Kafir to describe Hindus.

The Muslim participants raised the issue of stereotyping all Muslims as Jihadis or people with dubious citizenship.

This story was originally published in . Read the full story here