On Ambedkar Jayanti , we greet all readers on the 132nd birth anniversary of Dr. Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar, the father of the Indian Constitution. Beyond being the architect of the Indian constitution, Dr. Ambedkar was also a social reformer, economist, jurist, and politician.
Ambedkar Jayanti or Bhim Jayanti is celebrated on the 14th of April each year, wherein cultural events like plays are organized throughout India. People also offer flowers and light candles. Similarly, in several Indian states, it’s a public holiday wherein schools and colleges are closed, alongside government offices.
The making of Babasaheb Ambedkar
Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar was born in Mhow, which lies in Madhya Pradesh on 14th April 1891. He was the champion of Dalit rights and was fondly known as Babasaheb by his followers. He spent years studying the religion and converted to Buddhism alongside 500,000 followers in 1956. Dr. Ambedkar played a significant role in eradicating untouchability in Indian society. He had witnessed heartbreaking incidents of economic and social discrimination in his life. His caste, ‘Mahar’, was considered a low caste in India. Dr. Ambedkar penned down these experiences in his autobiographical book, ‘Waiting for a Visa’.
On 29th August 1947, Dr. Ambedkar was appointed the chairman of the Constitution Drafting Committee. The committee had been formulated to draft the constitution of independent India. Dr. Ambedkar was also the law minister of India following India’s independence.
One of the factors that make the constitution of India remarkable is that it broke the social conventions that were in place for the Hindu Shudras. This worked towards changing the mindset of the Shudra community and bought the light of education into their lives. Dr. Ambedkar granted equal rights to all citizens of India. This broke the monopoly, then enjoyed by Brahmins, Vaishyas, and Kshatriyas.
Dr. Ambedkar was a literary genius and had an in-depth understanding of the demographics of India. This is understood by his book, ‘Castes in India: Their Mechanism, Genesis and Development’, a title released in 1916. Dr. Ambedkar authored 20 books in his lifetime and also published scores of journals. He founded three newspapers, Bahishkrut Bharat (1927-1929), Janata (1930-56), and Prabuddha Bharat (1956).
The many contributions of Dr. Ambedkar toward independent India
Dr. Ambedkar is accredited for the countless contributions that he has made to modern, independent India, which included contributions towards setting up Indian states. Drafting of the constitution of India by Dr. Ambedkar worked towards setting up the foundation of RBI or the Reserve Bank of India. Dr. Ambedkar further championed gender equality and has always been seen as the voice of the downtrodden.
Let us recall two of the famous quotes of Dr. Ambedkar on Ambedkar Jayanti .
“I measure the progress of a community by the degree of progress which women have achieved.”
“A great man is different from an eminent one in that he is ready to be the servant of the society.”