Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh

Hindu nationalist organisation in India

Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, abbreviated as RSS (IAST: Rāṣṭrīya Svayamsevaka Saṅgha, IPA: [raːʂˈʈriːj(ə) swəjəmˈseːʋək səŋɡʱ], lit. "National Volunteer Organisation"), is an Indian right-wing, Hindu nationalist, paramilitary volunteer organisation. The RSS is the progenitor and leader of a large body of organisations called the Sangh Parivar (the "family of the RSS"), which have presence in all facets of the Indian society. RSS was founded on 27 September 1925. As of 2014, it has a membership of 5–6 million.The initial impetus was to provide character training through Hindu discipline and to unite the Hindu community to form a Hindu Rashtra (Hindu nation). The organisation promotes the ideals of upholding Indian culture and the values of a civil society and spreads the ideology of Hindutva, to "strengthen" the Hindu community. It drew initial inspiration from European right-wing groups during World War II. Gradually, RSS grew into a prominent Hindu nationalist umbrella organisation, spawning several affiliated organisations that established numerous schools, charities, and clubs to spread its ideological beliefs.The RSS was banned once during British rule, and then thrice by the post-independence Indian government, first in 1948 when Nathuram Godse, who claimed to have left RSS in 1946 over ideological differences, assassinated Mahatma Gandhi; then during The Emergency (1975–1977); and for a third time after the demolition of Babri Masjid in 1992.
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