President Pranab Mukherjee invited Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat for lunch today at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, the saffron outfit said. Bhagwat, who was in Rudrapur yesterday for the Sangh’s volunteer education and training programme, reached the national capital today for the meeting, RSS sources said. The timing of the meeting, which comes just ahead of the presidential election, has triggered speculation in some political quarters. The RSS said it was a pre-decided courtesy meet and there was nothing to read into it.
Earlier too, Bhagwat had called on Pranab Mukherjee to extend Diwali greetings. Both Bhagwat, whose name was proposed by Shiv Sena for the next president, and the incumbent Mukherjee have ruled out themselves from the race for the top constitutional post.