CENTRE for POLICY ANALYSIS

CENTRE for POLICY ANALYSIS

“Social progress can be measured by the social position of the female sex” - Karl Marx

ARTICLE


Ambedkar's Vision Stands In Agonising Contrast to the Babri Masjid Demolition


Just two days back on December 6, two very contrasting events for entirely contrasting reasons engaged public attention and reflection. It was on December 6, 1956, that Dr. B R Ambedkar breathed his last and that solemn event is observed every year by his followers as the Parinirvan Divas.

The sombre and sublime nature of Parinirvan associated with Dr. Ambedkar's sad demise and evocative of legacy associated with Lord Buddha stands in agonising contrast to the demolition of Babri Mosque described by the Supreme Court of India as "egregious violation of law" and celebrated by forces and formations representing Hindutva  as Shaurya Divas, Day of Victory.

Dr. Ambedkar renouncing Hinduism because of its foundational principles anchored on graded social inequality and his historic decision to embrace Buddhism on the ground that it is based on Pragyan (Enlightenment), Karuna (Compassion) and Samata (Equality) heralded a new era in India to revive Buddhism and ideals of Buddha. According to Swami Vivekananda, Buddha gave for the first time in the humann history "the gospel of social raising up". Therefore the usage of the term Parinirvan for describing  the passing away of Ambedkar is associated with the "gospel of social raising up" which became the central concern of his life and work.  

DEMOLITION OF BABRI MOSQUE AN AFFRONT TO AMBEDKAR'S LEGACY

Dr. Ambedkar proclaimed law as the greatest disinfectant against inequality, dubbed castes as anti-national, celebrated liberty, equality and fraternity, and stressed on reclamation of human personality held in bondage by caste system described by him as an ascending order of reverence and descending order of contempt.  

Juxtapose it with the Supreme Court's observation in its Ayodhya judgement that, "The law is ... a legislative instrument designed to protect the secular features of the Indian polity, which is one of the basic features of the Constitution," even as it strangely allowed construction of temple where the Babri Mosque stood demolished. Ambedkar's understanding of law and Supreme Court's interpretation of it in the context of secularism stand in exact opposition to the Shourya Divas which celebrates assault and violence on a Mosque, and therefore, constitutes an affront to the legacy of Dr. Ambedkar. 

WAR AGAINST MUSLIMS  

The destruction of Babri Mosque on December 6, 1992, heralded an ominous trend representing all out attack on secularism, and particularly on Muslims of India who are now at the receiving end because of many regressive and draconian legislations aimed against them.

The most recent one is the stringent ordinance of the UP Government to deal with Love Jihad. It targets interfaith couples belonging to Hindu and Muslim communities with severe penal offences and takes away their fundamental right and liberty to exercise their choices for forging matrimonial alliances. Such egregious violation of law and liberty is part of the calculated attack on Muslims, manifested in a sinister manner in lynching of many of them in the name of beef, their faith, dress  and life style.

On December 17, 1946 while participating in the discussion on the Objectives Resolution in the Constituent Assembly, Ambedkar had flagged with anxiety that some leaders made belligerent statements that amounted to waging war against Muslims and warned that “…if there is anybody who has in his mind the project of solving the Hindu-Muslim problem by force, which is another name of solving it by war… in order that the Muslims may be subjugated ...[t]his country would be involved in perpetually conquering them”.   

Celebration of Shaurya Divas on December 6 is a celebration of violence and hatred associated with the destruction of Babri Mosque and, therefore, such a celebration amounts to celebration of war as was apprehended by Dr. Ambedkar during pre-Partition days. 

The Special CBI Court while acquitting all 22 accused in the Babri Moque demolition case had observed that anti-social elements had destroyed  it. Therefore, all those who are celebrating its  demolition as Shauriya Divas are celebrating the work of the anti-social elements.   

CONSTITUTIONAL METHOD  

Dr. Ambedkar had cautioned in his last speech in the Constituent Assembly that adoption of the methods contrary to the constitutional method in pursuit of the objectives enshrined in the Constitution would result in grammar of anarchy. The demolition of Babri Mosque represented the brutal manifestation of the employment of unconstitutional method and, therefore, the "grammar of anarchy" that India witnessed in its aftermath constituted. in the words of late Shri K R Narayanan, then Vice President of India and Chairman, Rajya Sabha, a tragedy similar to the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.

EDUCATE, ORGANISE, AGITATE  

On the occasion of the Mahaparinirvan Divas of Dr. Ambedkar, one recalls his electrifying slogan "Educate, Organise and Agitate". The protagonists of Shaurya Divas and the leaders who swear by it are now at the helm of affairs of India and they while selectively quoting Ambedkar go against the very grain of his worldview. It is best manifested in the manner in which the agitation of lakhs of farmers against Farm laws has been handled, in a coercive manner for preventing their entry to Delhi to protest. The method of tear gassing them, blocking the road they travelled by barricades covered with barbed wire, digging trenches on their way and deployment of para military forces to deal with protest and agitation smacks of an approach disapproving of dissent by applying disproportionate force.

Such a muscular approach to deal with farmers' agitation combined with criminalisation of dissent and protest is inconsistent with Dr. Ambedkar's vision anchored on constitutional method and cultivation of constitutional morality for defending the idea and unity of India.   

AMBEDKAR ON JOURNALISM

The protagonists of Shaurya Divas who attempted to suppress farmers and foil their agitation are relying on embedded media to transmit news and views which would be in variance with the cause of farmers who have specifically kept at bay such media channels describing them as Godi Media. It is in this context one is reminded the words of Dr. Ambedkar who indicted media in 1943 in his piece "Gandhi, Ranade and Jinha" and wrote, "Journalism in India was once a profession. It has now become a trade. It has no more moral function than the manufacture of soap. It does not regard itself as the responsible adviser of the Public."

Adding further he stated, "To give the news uncoloured by any motive, to present a certain view of public policy which it believes to be for the good of the community, to correct and chastise without fear all those, no matter how high, who have chosen a wrong or a barren path, is not regarded by journalism in India its first or foremost duty. To accept a hero and worship him has become its principal duty". His words, "Under it, news gives place to sensation, reasoned opinion to unreasoning passion, appeal to the minds of responsible people to appeal to the emotions of the irresponsible" sounds so true in the context of post truth age of twenty first century.   

" ...Indian journalism", stated  Ambedkar,  "...is written by drum-boys to glorify their heroes". "Never has the interest of country been sacrificed so senselessly for the propagation of hero-worship",  wrote Ambedkar,  and added with anguish, "Never has hero-worship become so blind as we see it in India today. There are, I am glad to say, honourable exceptions. But they are too few and their voice is never heard".

Recalling those insightful remarks of Dr. Ambedkar on his Parinirvan Divas. we underline their contemporary significance to address and defeat the forces celebrating the so-called Shaurya Divas   

The writer served as Officer on Special Duty and Press Secretary to Former President of India, late K R Narayanan. The views are personal.  

 

ARTICLE

  • The Taj That is India
  • The BJP and Triple Talaq
  • Rohingya: A People Condemned!
  • GLOBALISATION IS THE NEW COLONISATION
  • 9 Key Qs Raised on First Day of Aadhaar Hearing in the Supreme Court
  • A Critical Analysis of Delhi's Human Development Index
  • 3 Army Divisions For 300 Terrorists In JK But No End to Violence: Certainly the Answer Does Not Lie in Force
  • TWO CENTURIES OF BHIMA KOREGAON
  • 'It is Not the Left But the Congress That's the B-Team of the BJP'
  • Kasganj: A Story of People's Unity Fractured by Engineered Hate and Violence
  • Invisible Children Of Delhi
  • India 81 in Corruption Index, Amongst the "Worst Offenders"
  • Economists Hit Out Against Move to Privatise Public Sectors Banks
  • Tripura Trades Decency For False Eldorado
  • Syria's Bloody War
  • Pakistan And China Fill Space In Maldives Willfully Vacated By India
  • The Big Private Crop Insurance Scam: Farmers Par Premium of Rs 482, Receive Rs 5 as Insurance!
  • US Attack on Syria Violates International Law, Total Hypocrisy
  • Death Penalty Is Not The Answer To Sexual Violence: Implement Justice Verma Committee Report
  • Walls on Every Side: Trying to Get Data in India
  • The Ascent of Multi-Politics In Malaysia
  • Why the Objections to Marxism are Mistaken
  • The Rise and Fall of the Malaysian Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim
  • BDS Has Placed Israel on Notice
  • CURTAIN RAISER: ELECTIONS IN PAKISTAN
  • Can We Promote Peace in India, Today?
  • Burying The Two-State Solution
  • Corruption And Class Rule
  • Is Ethnic Cleansing Coming to India
  • Our Real Heroes
  • Confronting Journalism's Misogynistic Trolls
  • ASSESSING THE RETURN OF AN UNLIMITED PRESIDENCY
  • After 17 Years of War, A Peace Movement Grows in Afghanistan
  • Taking Play Seriously: Time to Make Sports A Fundamental Right!
  • Law Commission Publishes Consultation Paper on Sedition
  • Foreign Policy: Between Folly and Foibles
  • Suu Kyi's Continued Denial And Bangladesh's
  • Economy Crumbles as Fuel Prices Skyrocket, Household Budgets Hit
  • Rupee's New Low: A Dangerous Drift
  • Are We Still Ruled by The British?
  • From Anti-National to Urban Naxal: The Trajectory of Dissent in India
  • Learning the Power of Lies: Facts vs. Falsehoods in the Age of Trump
  • The Indian Economy is in a Tailspin
  • China Walks a Tightrope on The Uighur Muslim Issue
  • Is Ram Mandir a Mere Election Strategy of the BJP?
  • The Harsher Counters of India's Drug Legislations
  • BJP's Election Strategy: Data is the New Opium
  • Geographical Indication - India's Untapped Resource
  • Climate Change to Make Prediction of Furious Storms More Difficult
  • Mountain echoes for India
  • Maldives: Has the Wheel Turned Full Circle?
  • President Sirisena Needs to be Reached Sooner Rather Than Later
  • Plastic Pollution in India
  • Prejudice by Any Name
  • 29 Years After Fall of Berlin Wall, Europe Has 1,000 Km of Walls to Stop Migrants
  • The Leftover Women of Afghanistan
  • Harmony of Music and Politics of Silencing
  • The Economics of Policy: Prohibition and Free Water Supply
  • Threat to Democracy in the Age of Social or Anti-Social Media
  • Intellectual Property- A Vital Discipline
  • What Happened in Britain, and What's Next
  • Assembly Debacle: BJP Got Taken in by Its Own Fake News
  • India: Secular Democracy or Hindu Rashtra
  • Adani is Byword for Government's Climate Inaction as Australia Gears for Elections
  • How The Modi Government is Killing Off MGNREGS
  • The Year of the Gazan
  • Assembly Polls: Ten Crucial Takeaways Ahead of 2019
  • The Real Effects of Fake Propaganda on Migrants
  • Why NGOs in Pakistan Are at The Brink of Extinction
  • Dogged by Brexit
  • In My Own Voice: Citizenship Amendment Bill And You
  • Oil Giant Shell Finally Faces Its Day In Court For Complicity In Rapes And Murders in Nigeria
  • The Geopolitics of Pulwama
  • Shah Faesal Cuts Through Calls for Blood and Lays Out a Roadmap for Kashmir
  • Modi's ABC: Avoiding, Burying, Confusing
  • The Kashmir Question: A 'Made in India' Problem
  • Opposition Must Take a Stand Against the War Politics of Hindutva
  • 'Patriotism' Made Easy in Times of 'WhatsApp Elections'
  • Urban Poor Have Set Agenda for 2019 Elections
  • Will the US End Up Putting Sanctions on Every Country That Doesn't Bend to its Will?
  • Minority and Indigenous Women Human Rights Activists More Prone to Harassment UN Report
  • Tribute to Speaker Rabi Ray (1926-2017)
  • International Participation is Necessary Where State is Part of The Problem
  • Italy Takes Belt and Road to The Heart of Europe
  • The Legacy of Shaheed-e-Azam
  • In My Own Voice: Heroes or Hiroshima
  • The Modi Years
  • Election in Israel: A Race to the Bottom
  • Why Bangladesh Overtook Pakistan
  • Digital Monopoly Platforms, Modi Regime and Threat to Our Democracy
  • Elitism and Development
  • Jawaharlal Nehru and Organised Religion
  • A Brief History of the IUML and Kerla's Muslims
  • The Immunisation of Human Rights
  • How Can India Win The Struggle on Poverty?
  • The RSS's Chanakya Neeti
  • Diversity, Belonging and Multiculturalism
  • The Chinese Ambition
  • The Role City Govts Can Play in the Health of Citizens
  • Dr. Saifuddin Kitchlew: Forgotten Warrior of Our Freedom Movement
  • Fighting Climate Change, Building Resilience
  • Mridula Sarabhai(the orignal anti-national)
  • Right to Education: A Dream Half Forgotten
  • Decoding One Nation One Poll
  • Tunisia Heads for Polls Amidst Economic Slowdown, Squsbbling and Crack Down on Islamic Extremist
  • Lynchings, Litchis and No Water: What the International Media is Saying Abount India
  • Blood in the Nile
  • Will the BNP Ever Again be a Major Political Force in Bangladesh?
  • 'Real Estate Brokers' Cannot Dampen The Palestinian Spirit
  • The Indian Liberal's Conundrum
  • Hope For Democracy in Sudan
  • In Depth: Water Crisis Looming Across Tamil Nadu
  • Missing Secularism in New Education Policy
  • Religion, Nationalism And Insurgency in Balochistan
  • Dim Lights, Closed Blinds: History Lessons From a Party in Power
  • Loan Waivers Need Better Designing to Prevent Farmer Suicides
  • Makimg Best Use of Sri Lanka's Strategic Location
  • FDI in Coal: Look Who's Coming to the Party
  • Weapons and the Never Ending Space Race
  • Thirty Years the Berlin Wall Brought Down
  • Reclaiming the Opposition and Political Space in India
  • An Interreligious Conference to Build Bridges in Sri Lanka
  • On 'Correcting' History and Akbar's Invasion of Kashmir
  • The Evolution of the 'Nobel Prize' in Economics
  • Close Coordination Between Turkey and Russia in Syria
  • Sri Lanka's Election Time Promises Costly to Keep
  • The India Economy and The Cobra Effect
  • Fascism: Is Liberal Use "Trivialising" This "Destructive Phenomenon?"
  • Treating the Poor as Development Guinea Pigs
  • A Not sp 'National Education Policy: Analysis Reveals Exclusion in Education Sector
  • University Fee Hikes Pave the Way for Selling Public Assets
  • The Truth About Middle Class 'Revolutions?
  • 50 Years of US Arms Trade: The Lasting Impact on West Asia
  • India Abjures Secularism in Bangladesh's View, Will Regional Cooperation Take a Hit?
  • Amidist Resistance to "De-Tribalisation", A Look at Why Jharkhand Polls are More Critical Than They Appear
  • The Dangerous Game of Citizenship: BJP Creates Divisive Agenda Through NRC
  • Revealed: US Losing Aghan War Due to "Fatally Flawed" War Strategies and Lack of Clear Objetives
  • 'Politics and Prejudice': Can Dalit-Bahujans and left Progressives Join Hands?
  • State Power's Attempts at Rewriting History
  • Afghanista's Tumultous Fourty-Year Journey
  • Nepal: Citizen's Needs Remain Sidelined as Turbulent Game of Politics Continues
  • "Enough is Enough": Secular India Revolts Against a " Majoritarian State"
  • Looking at Cuba's Revolution 61 Years On
  • Soleimani Murder Set to Spiral Out of Control, US Expected to Pressure India Under LEMOA
  • The Rise of Digital Media and The Viral Phenomenon of "Nowledge"
  • Thus Spake JP: Beware the Writing on the Wall
  • Sri Lankan Government Must Pay Attention to Problem-Solving in the North
  • Drowning Nation Clutches at Military Might?
  • India's Neighbourhood First Policy Crumbles
  • A Gobal Assault by the Far-Right
  • Delhi Riots: Historical Patterns, Complicity of Forces Point to Planned Violence
  • Behind The Protests Defending Public Education
  • Putting The Judiciary on Trial
  • "Sanctions Are a Crime": During Coronavirus Pandemic, Sanctions Against Iran, Venezuela Causing Medical Shortages
  • Social Messiahs or Smart Entrepreneurs?
  • Justice Gogoi Joining Rajya Sabha Points to a Constitutional Crisis
  • A Russian "Plays Long Game" Firewall for Venezuela Against US Sanctions
  • RSS and the Question of Morality
  • Establishing COVID-19 Hospitals in Record Time
  • A New "Medical Internationalism" Needed: Cuba At the Pandemic Frontlines Even As Wealthy States Neglect Healthcare
  • Why They Suffer: The Human/Animal Conflict
  • More Books and Snowy Mornings
  • Statesmanship Required to Avert Constitutinal Crisis in Sri Lanka
  • Combating 'Hate Virus': Communal Forces Divide in times of Global Pandemin
  • How Biometric Authentication Has Excluded MAny From The Public Distribution System
  • Lessons From Iraq: Before Trump Sues China, US Must pay for Unjust War on Iraq
  • The American War System And The Global 'War of Error'
  • Demilitarising Patriotism in The Covid Fight
  • Muslims Need a Fair Media
  • Sri-Lanka: Shock of Covid-19 Wanes, Nationalist Sentiments Rise as Elections Approach
  • Covid-19 in Brazil: A 21st Century 'Reenactment' of the 19th Century Yellow Fever?
  • Iran's Fuel Tankers for Venezuela Sail to Safety Under 'Chinese Shield'
  • US Protests Bear Lessons For Sri Lanka
  • India and Nepal in For A Prolonged Standoff?
  • The Fifth Schedule: Tribal Advisory Councils and International Perspectives
  • The Asian American Response to Pandemic-Era Racism Must Be Cross-Racial Solidarity
  • Is Police Brutality Exclusive to the USA?
  • Libya's Future Seema to Rest on Arrangements Between Russia And Turkey
  • China's strategic Mind And Method: "Long-Term Planning" Behind Country's Geo-Political Moves
  • Returning Migrants: A Boon For Rural Industrialisation?
  • Why Refugees in Greece Are Afraid of the Word 'Camp'''
  • Black Lives Matter Movement And Its Lessons For India
  • US Provocations Trigger Tension in Sino-American Relations
  • Inclusive Representation Required In Sri Lanka's Decision-Making Bodies
  • Humanists At Risk: Demonising Dissent, Infantilising Society
  • Putin Anticipates 'Cascading Tension', Hints At Need To Rest World Order
  • Why the Neoliberal Agenda Is a Failure at Failure at Fighting Coronavirus
  • Covid-19 Underscores Importance of Local Planning
  • BRI Drive Post-Covid-19 Global Economic Recovery', Claims China
  • Are We Mainstreaming or Simply Trivialising Biodiversity?
  • Is Iran's Influence in Iraq Waning?
  • Green Economic Recovery: A Firm Commitment Required
  • Ease Of Doing Business VS Human Development
  • Provincial Councils The Best Option For A Peaceful Sri Lanka?
  • Revisiting the GDP Paradox
  • Coverange of Ayodhya Sparked "Convenient Collective Amnesia"
  • Prashant Bhushan And The Case of Contempt: "An Example of How Not to Write A Judgment"
  • Strengthening the Capacity of Gram Sabhas
  • Far Right Authoritarian Leaders Have Intensified The Pandemic in Their Countries
  • Congress And The Hindutva Campaign: "The Middle Path is Fast-Disappearing"
  • Trump Faces Backlash at Attempts to Suppress Mail-In Voting
  • Meeting the Covid Challenge to Define Our Nationhood
  • Capitalism's Political Problem: In Constant Conflict With Democracy
  • Anti-CAA Movement: How The 'OutSider' Discourse Dismisses Dissent
  • Centre Shirks Responsibility, "Abandons States" For Political Gain
  • Healing the Health System
  • Emerging Challenges for the International Labour Organisation
  • After Ayodhya, Kashi-Mathura On Temple Politics Agenda?
  • Unlike Today's Farm Bills, Even Britishers' Champaran Agrarian Bill Underwent Legislative Scrutiny
  • Science in Industry and the Academy
  • The US Supreme Court Has Never Been Liberal
  • Coronavirus Pandemic and Recessions: Disastrous for 'White Collar' Jobs
  • What Does Justice Mean Today?
  • Bihar's Political Ennui Can Only be Overcome by the Left
  • Gender Budget: Kerala Leads the Way, The Centre Should Follow
  • The Fight for Right to Information
  • Will Swing Voters Make Bihar Elections a Closer Contest Than Anticipated?
  • AMY Coney Barrett Sworn in as us Supreme Court Judge: Major Victory For the Right Wing
  • Thailand Protests - Youth Demand Greater Democratic Freedom
  • Unemployment a Key Issue in Bihar Elections
  • Capitalists Hungry For Land in Developing Countries Are a Threat to Indigenous Communities
  • Signals From Bihar: BJP and Left 'Sure Winners', Congress 'Neither Here Nor There'
  • Trump Lost But May Continue to Wield His Weapons of Destructions
  • Healing Divisions Post Election is The Challenge
  • 8 'Fruitless' Talks Later: XI Refuses to Budge, Modi in 'No Mood to Ruffle Feathers'
  • A Biden Presidency Hails The Return of The 'Ancien Regime'
  • Locating Nehru's Place In History
  • Why The BJP Has Shifted Focus From 'Congress Mukt Bharat' To Regional Parties
  • As People's Distress Grows, BJP Government is Busy Else where
  • The West Asia Trump Leaves Behind
  • Ambedkar's Vision Stands In Agonising Contrast to the Babri Masjid Demolition
  • Diversity in Nation Building: Recognising the Role of The Minority
  • Farmers Turn the Spotlights on Big Business
  • America's Vaccine Paranoia
  • Afghanistan: Despite US-Taliban Agreements, Peace Remains Elusive
  • ‘MOVE UP OR MOVE OUT’: THE ENTRY OF CORPORATES WILL RENDER THE SMALL FARMERS DEFENSELESS
  • DESPITE DIFFERENCES, AGRICULTURAL WORKERS RESIST NEW LAWS WITH FARMERS
  • JUDGES’ LAPSES
  • ONLINE VIOLENCE GROWS AGAINST WOMEN JOURNALISTS
  • THE YEAR THAT WAS: PEOPLE’S RESISTANCE BUILDS AGAINST HOSTILE GOVERNMENT
  • Kisan Protests Are More About Survival of the Peasantry
  • CENTRAL VISTA PROJECT: “CIRCUS AND THEATRE” IN LIEU OF “BREAD AND JOBS”?
  • FARM LAWS WILL LEAD TO RISE OF NEW ‘MIDDLEMAN’ - THE CEOS OF THE OLIGARCHY
  • REPUBLICANS MUST GET IN LINE, THEY CREATED THIS MONSTER
  • Kamalji - Goodbye My Friend!
  • Condolence Message for Mr Kamal Morarka
  • Global dynamics in 2021
  • Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan: Muslims for Composite Indian Nationalism
  • Rajapaksas Regime Under Multiple Pressures
  • Coup Attempt in Jordan Leaves a Trail
  • What Kind of Political Candidates Did Gandhi Hope Voters Would Support?
  • Are Indian Students Losing Out on Past History as Textbooks are Being Changed?
  • FINANCING THE FIGHT AGAINST GLOBAL WARMING
  • Hamas Emerges as the Charioteer of the Palestinian Resistance Against Israel
  • CHILE’S CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY CAN REMOVE CAPITALIST EQUATIONS
  • TURKEY DELIBERATELY DOWNED A RUSSIAN JET IN 2015, COURT TESTIMONY REVEALS
  • THE BATTERING OF RELIGION-BASED POLITICS IN WEST BENGAL
  • GOVERNMENTS MUST UNDO BIG PHARMA GRIP OVER VACCINES
  • BRAHMANIC NATIONALISM AND THE CASTE HIERARCHY
  • OVERCONSUMPTION IS THE PROBLEM ‘NET ZERO’ CANNOT SOLVE
  •