BABASAHEB-The Past behind today's glorious Present!
An eminent scholar, Human Rights Profounder, Women Emancipator, Powerful Leader, politician, and writer, the true HERO, Dr Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar, is the pen who has written the destiny of many. Today, at the 128th birth Anniversary of Babasaheb, I would like to throw light on some immensely crucial points that deserve your attention.
The struggles in his path which he made the stepping stones towards success
Belonging to the Mahar caste and considered as the Shudra, Babasaheb had to endure a lot of pain. Initially, he was denied the right to education and even when he was admitted he was forced to sit outside the class. He was prohibited to touch the pot or glass and only at the mercy of the peon he could quench his thrust who used to give him water from a distance which he collected in his hands. Once when the teacher asked him to solve an answer on the board, his classmates started shouting that he shouldn't be allowed to do that since he is a shudra and ran to take away their lunch boxes kept nearby which they considered would be impurified by his shadow. This was not only his story but of all the Dalits at that time. Due to his determination, he became the first Indian to gain a doctorate in economics from abroad. It was on his book- "The problem of the Rupee- its origin and its solution", the Reserve bank of India was established.
The Father of the Constitution
Both the Britishers as well as the Indians realized the immense potential, skills, and knowledge that Babasaheb had. With the big pool of knowledge which Babasaheb possessed, there could be none other who could be the best suit for becoming the president of the drafting committee. If today we enjoy the fundamental rights, a democratic society, secularism, security of equality, liberty and fraternity, amongst many other benefits then that's just because of this great man who strived all through is life for making India an egalitarian society through the social-economic inclusion of the depressed and marginalized sections. Below is the series released by the official channel of Rajya Sabha which depicts the making of the constitution and highlights the efforts of Babasaheb amongst many other honourable personalities.
Was he the 'MASIHA of Dalits'?
Indeed he was, but not only for the Dalits. He concentrated on the uttermost downtrodden sections of the society and no doubt Dalits and women were the ones which were facing the most. Just imagine someone beating you mercilessly for just satisfying your thirst from a public well. Imagine the plight of small children being separated from society and being denied the right to education which is the most powerful tool of progress. Why? Just because of the identity for which they were not at all responsible. The same so-called "Upper caste men" who considered the Dalits as untouchables had no issues in raping the Dalit women. What hypocrisy! Babasaheb encouraged women's social, political and economic empowerment. During those days Dalit women were forced to wear saris till their knees but Babasaheb asked them to wear it till down like other women.
My thoughts on Reservation
I myself belong to a Dalit family and if you would ask me whether there is a need of reservation today, I would reply unfortunately yes! I would also like to tell you that there are only a few like me who deliberately wish for a day where this will end because neither we want to be looked as inferior but sadly that day has not come yet. Coming from an agricultural background, I was the first from my family who could achieve this level of education all because of the sacrifices of my parents. But trust me there are many who are not even aware of this tool "reservation" in the uttermost remote areas of India. Our country is home to a wide range of diversity. Do you think it is possible to bring all the people to the same level by giving them the same opportunity? That may incline towards equality but will not be justice.
For people who have been denied the right to education for years, it is not easy to develop the same level of aptitude as others. Moreover, you may consider that Dalits are not subjected to all the cruelties now. Indeed we have progressed much but things haven't changed that significantly as you think. Below is a fab must-watch documentary which has covered many states of India to bring out that Casteism still exists today! Babasaheb said- "Samaj ko badalne ke liye, pehle samaj ko pdhna zaroori hai". Before making any perception please watch the parts of this documentary. I bet this will shake you.
We live in such a hypocritical society that on one hand we blame the reservations and on the other, there are people who make fake caste certificates to enjoy the benefits. These are the same people who held reservation responsible for all the problems and then exclaim with joy when the reservation for the EWS is granted. Maximum people belonging to the reserved categories do not have assets to secure their future. Once I told my friend that I had an education loan, to which he replied that his father is against it and will do anything for his studies. Hardly I could tell him that these would not have been his words if he were in my position. Once when my class teacher was enquiring the caste of all, she especially took me amongst some others outside to inquire, since we belonged to the SCs and STs. There are numerous incidents from my life which will shake you but I don't consider myself as a victim because I know there are many who are experiencing even worse. If you are against reservation, I am glad that you didn't experience those!
I know it's tough, really tough to accept that you study hard for an exam and a candidate with a lower mark than yours gets the seat but believe me, if he doesn't get this opportunity today never it would happen that the need for reservation will end. I was amazed to realize that there were just a few friends of mine who knew that even for reservation in case of SCs and STs there is an annual income bar and not all get that. There is no reservation in the private sector and only nearly 2% in the public sector. We neglect the fact that it is not a particular section of the society which is taking away the jobs but the reality is that the job creation and employment opportunities are diminishing which is the crux of the problem.
Though I believe that there should be the concept of Creamy, non-creamy layer for SCs and STs as well, the end to the reservation will snatch away the chance of equal opportunities and that will never lead India to utilize its full workforce. Thus what is more important today is to make people aware of this tool so that they can utilize it to come at par with the rest and curb its need soon.
The plight of Manual scavenging as the prime example
If people say that all sorts of discrimination have ended, why is that only a particular section of the society is forced to clean the shit of others? What an irony is this that we can develop the technology to reach Mars but not to go some feet down to clean the human excreta!! Have you ever wondered this!!? Please watch the following videos to understand more.
I can go on and on penning down my views but I guess you might have achieved at least a brief idea of what I actually wanted to emphasize on. One of my very dear friends once told me that " Our constitution is so partial". I respect his views but the present is always a reverberance of the past. Without bringing the marginalized sections into the mainstream we will not be able to progress as a nation.
To all the ones who criticize reservation, I would like to apologize for the pain it had caused you and at the same time I would request you that before criticizing, please have a look at the history, google the incidents that happen at the present, visit villages to see whether it still exists or not and then form a perception. Please enquire the caste of the pandits in the temple and the maids, sweepers, toilet cleaners and check how far we have come. At the same time, I assure you that one day will come when these people who are getting reservations themselves will raise their voice to end it.
To all the candidates who belong to the reserved categories, please make it a tool to help more people belonging to this section and make it a point to not use it for your unnecessary benefits. The wrong use of this tool will only welcome criticism and will lead to your own disgrace. Try to beat the general cutoffs rather than relaxing with the reserved category ones. Don't give a chance to others to see you as subordinate. This was not what Babasaheb fought for.
Thanks for reading and apology if I might have hurt your sentiments unknowingly!