Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat will attend the outfit's function here on January 23 to celebrate the 126th birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.
The programme will be held on Shahid Minar Ground, a stone's throw from Red Road, where the state government's official function on the occasion is held.
The Trinamool Congress criticised the decision as "an attempt by the RSS and the BJP to appropriate the national icon ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls".
"Bhagwat Ji will speak on Netaji's ideology, vision and how he had fought for the liberation of the country. The programme will be attended by thousands of swayamsevaks (volunteers) from across the state," an RSS spokesperson told PTI.
Bhagawat is expected to arrive in the city on January 18 but the details of his itinerary are being chalked out, another RSS functionary said.
The TMC strongly reacted to the decision, with its spokesperson Jay Prakash Majumdar saying, "RSS had never shown respect to Netaji, it had only spoken ill of him. If one reads the utterances of RSS leaders in the past, one can see how scornful they were about Netaji."
"The RSS has suddenly woken up to the valour of Netaji as panchayat polls are round the corner, followed by Lok Sabha polls next year, and they want to assist the BJP," he said.
Reacting to the TMC's allegation, BJP state spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya said that the ruling party in the state finds politics in everything, "even if a social organisation such as RSS wants to discuss Netaji's ideals and involve the younger generation in the exercise".
-With PTI Input