Wayanad MP and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Thursday said he will not call the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) the Sangh Parivar any longer. He made this statement following the controversial incident of nuns being heckled and forced to step out from a train in Uttar Pradesh allegedly by members of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), the student wing of the RSS, the ideological mentor of the BJP.

Gandhi tweeted in Hindi, “This is my belief that the RSS and affiliated organisations should not be called the Sangh Parivar…In a family there are women, there is respect for elders, there is love and affection… which is not in the RSS. So now I will not call the RSS as Parivar (family).”

According to reports, the incident took place on March 19 when the nuns were travelling on the Haridwar-Puri Utkal Express when the members of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) accused the nuns of carrying out religious conversions.

They were allowed to proceed only after an “inquiry at the railway station established there was no conversion involved”.

A 25-second video from the train compartment shows the women surrounded by some men, some of whom appear to be policemen.

Rahul Gandhi, attacking the RSS on the issue, said, “The attack in UP on nuns from Kerala is a result of the vicious propaganda run by the Sangh Parivar to pitch one community against another and trample the minorities. Time for us as a nation to introspect and take corrective steps to defeat such divisive forces.”

(With IANS inputs)