Dattatreya Hosabale has been elected as the Sarkaryawah (General Secretary) of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) on Saturday. The 65-year-old hails from Shivamogga in Karnataka. The incumbent Sarkaryawah, 73-year-old Suresh Bhaiyaji Joshi, has completed his fourth term. The Akhil Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha (ABPS) that is usually held in Nagpur has been in Bengaluru for the first time this year. The Sarkaryawah is elected once every three years as a practice.
The ABPS convection in Bengaluru saw a limited number of delegates attend with only 600 of the 1500 delegates physically present and others voting virtually due to COVID-19. The convention was also curtailed to two days instead of the usual three days, keeping safety precautions in mind. An annual meet is also held in venues across the country but last year’s event which was scheduled to be held in Bengaluru was cancelled due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Sarkaryawah (General Secretary) is the highest elected position in RSS as the chief of the organisation. The next Sarkaryawah is usually one of the incumbent Sarkaryawah’s deputies called the sah-sar-karyawan. Joshi had six deputies, Dattatreya Hosabale, Krishna Gopal, Bhagaiah Suresh Soni, Manmohan Vaidya, and Mukunda.
Hosabele comes from a family of RSS activists and has been associated with the organisation since 1968. He has also served with the RSS-affiliated student body, Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, since 1972 and has been its General Secretary as well. During the Emergency, he was imprisoned for 16 months under Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA). Hosabale has been sah-sar-karyawan since 2009. He holds a post graduate in English literature and speaks Kannada, Hindi, English and Sanskrit.
Sarkaryawah is part of the RSS core decision-making group called the Akhil Bharatiya Karyakarini. The group also has the RSS chief, joint general secretaries, heads and deputy heads of RSS wings. The ABK is responsible for all decisions of the RSS.