No chance of Dalit upliftment without Ambedkarism
The thoughtful write-up from Sandeep Dongre with the notion of Dalit upliftment without Ambedkarism is not a possibility. Writer is a Vice President at a reputed mobile company in South region, India.
13-14th Oct 2013. Lacks of Dalits from all over India gathered in Nagpur to celebrate a much less known event- The conversion of Dalits to Buddhism by Dr. Ambedkar in 1956. One can find hundreds of stalls surrounding the Deekshabhoomi, all run by spirited individuals literally declaring their unstinted love for Babasaheb.
The night before was full of celebration and people were literally on the street. Numerous processions were taken out carrying Baba’s and Buddha’s photos. Thousands of volunteers have come forward to help and guide those visiting Nagpur just to be part of these celebrations.
Not just the Dhamma Chakra Pravartan day, but his Birthday is also celebrated with equal enthusiasm. There is one thing called state sponsored celebration for few National leaders for which even a holiday gets declared with lots of public resources pooled into it. On the other side the Celebrations entirely carried out by people themselves with meager resources. It is only the love of people that such celebrations are possible. No wonder, the statues of Dr. Ambedkar set up out of love and respect by people themselves far outnumber the State-sponsored statues of most other leaders of this country.
One really comes to think of – Is there any national leader in India, past or present, who commands such respect even after more than 50 years of his death?? I can’t think of any personality even internationally who can match the popularity of Dr. Ambedkar.
The Dalits of this country revere Dr. Ambedkar and he is such an integral part of their lives that any attempt to even separate one from another will just be a mirage.
On the Political front, Dalits have grown in importance because of their immense ability to unite. A significant number is well educated and know of their rights. They have a lot of desire to do something for their community and they are slowly and steadily getting united for the purpose. Dalits of this country are not bound to any single party. They are intelligent enough to understand what is good for them and who will be more beneficial to them.
Dalit groups are capable of evaluating the pros and cons of supporting any political group and they are looking for alternatives which meet their needs. They are looking for political parties which respect them as a group, genuinely try to formulate policies that will give them a sense of equality, are sensitive to the gross atrocities that have happened on them and are willing to walk that extra mile to support them. Their love for their Leader Dr. Ambedkar is uncompromising and they don’t want political parties taking undue advantage of them by supporting them but by not giving due respect to their leader.
Congress has shown an intention to work towards the betterment of Dalits and they have quite a few leaders who are well-intentioned towards Dalits. Their young Leader Rahul Gandhi’s love and respect for Dalits is beyond question. He has shown enough signs of support for Dalits and can be looked up to really take a concrete step.
However, Congress majorly fails on one count and this has never let them emerge as true supporter of Dalits. Time and again they have tried to disassociate Dalits from Dr. Ambedkar and continuously made an unsuccessful attempt at projecting other congress leaders as true champions of the Dalit cause. No matter how glorious the congress leaders have been and how well they have pursued other cause, there can be no denying of the fact that they don’t come close to Dr. Ambedkar when their contribution to the Dalit cause is concerned.
I have attended several lecture series where the congress leaders have talked of strategizing about betterment of Dalits and have quoted several congress leaders of last 100 years but even without once mentioning Dr. Ambedkar. They don’t realize that the audience understands this very well and may be that is the reason that the trust factor ALWAYS lacks.
Congress has also tried to mobilize Dalit people in the past, all with good intention. They have also tried to groom Dalit people to become future leaders. Once these Dalit people have achieved a significant status, they even stop referring to Dr. Ambedkar. From that day itself, they stop being the true representatives of Dalits.
Congress has to internalize a very simple thing- they have all the right to think for the betterment of Dalits but they should do it without trying to alter the basic fabric of a Dalit human heart. Any attempt to do so really puzzles a Dalit youth and it ultimately results into mistrust.
Dalit upliftment without Ambedkarism is not a possibility!! Don’t even attempt it.
Filed under: ambedkar, dikshabhumi | 1 Comment
Tags: Ambedkarism, Congress, Dalit upliftment, Deekshabhoomi, Dhamma Chakra Pravartan day, Dr. Ambedkar, Nagpur