It is the birth anniversary of Dr. BR Ambedkar, the man famed for drafting the Indian constitution. He must himself be astonished how after so many years of his demise the descendants of the ideological detractors of his times, today are worshipping him like a God and celebrating his birth anniversary as Ambedkar Jayanti!
This author has always been a critic of the personality of Dr. Ambedkar, because of his pessimistic approach towards perspectives which could have been dealt with in a better manner post 1947, but instead he led his cynicism and paranoia prevail above everything else and laid the foundations of eternal strife between quarters and sections of Indian society. No wonder at the time in the Congress there was no other man who had the desried knowledge (theoretical) to prepare a constitution for India and we are certainly indebted to the genius of this man for giving us a rough framework which identifies India in motion!
Yet no work of man is fail-proof, and no man is perfect, Dr. Ambedkar never acknowledged the natural fallacies in human nature and he fell a prey to his own charisma in the later years of his life.
This author has a limited access to his personal convictions through a study of his life and certain recroded perspectives that he voiced in the constituent assembly over the issue of reservations for the weaker sections primarily Dalits and this author also perused the way in which the Jana Sangh and other conservatists, along with certain socialists found it tough to deal with a man such as Ambedkar. While today, the political landscape seems to be one of claiming the legacy of Ambedkar even if it is next to deifying him to appease the Dalit vote-bank.
The Ambedkarite movement became a magnificent vote getter for many political parties post independence and even people like Ms. Mayawati became significant. Just like Ambedkar, Kanshiram the founder of the BSP had planned to convert to Buddhism in an open mass ceremony with an odd 50,000,000 followers on 14th of October, 2006 but unfortunately he died on the 5th of October that same month! Now, this is similar to what Ambedkar did when he left the Congress and contested an election from Bombay constituency only to loose while at the same time trying to give birth to the Dalit Buddhist Movement in India.
Ambedkar had a rough past as a child since he belonged to a caste which was widely considered as untouchable but, this fact has been very much hidden that he had the previlege of social ascription in the caste heirarchy because his father was in the government service. This is what made him feel that some kind of state support might change the lives of others who cannot imitate him!
His cynicism was deep to such an extent that he not only chose to rubbish Sardar Patel but also ignore Gandhi ji when his reservation strategy was first brought to his knowledge! The movement that Gandhi ji had laid the foundations of would have been well served by providing for a wider society at par where the caste wasn’t acknowledged at all, yet Dr. Ambedkar was always assertive of his identity and often fought with the leaders around him.
Psychologically Ambedkar did not believe in the divine and was a complete western in outlook and mindset. He had completely shunned the concept of Hindu beliefs and had a contempt for Jinnah, and Islam as well. He was certainly a non-believer because he had over-come the struggles and had reached an influential destination in his life, yet his influence was symbolic of his scars of the past and his contempt for Hinduism. He was a reformer to such an extent that when he was launching the Dalit Buddhist movement his rationale was that Buddhism belonged to the Indian soil, while Islam was an alien culture, this was his flexibility to achieve poilitcal mileage out of faith.
Ambedkar never identified himself as a socialist as well, and often narrowed is view point around socialist ideas only, which is certainly conflicting and depicts the confilicts and egotist narcissistic individual he had transformed himself into. Though today, he also deified by the communists in India, though by no means he meant an egalitarian world, he rather desired a world dominated by Dalits, which was more revolutionary than communism itself!
In 1956 Ambedkar invented a new sect of Buddhism that visualised the consolidation of Buddhists as a socio-political entity against Hindus, and the ideas were completely different from the other schools of Buddhist philosophy, while he set foot to become a messiah/ prophet of sorts and this Buddhist sect was known as Navayana Buddhist philosophy.
There is nothing more to be said about a man who just went on to declare himself a prophet in the blind pursuit of dominance and power because he believed that Nehru who was a Brahmin sidelined him because he was a Dalit.
Psychologically Dr. Ambedkar was not one who handled his responsibilties well, or had a saintly nature as compared to another Dalit leader Babu Jagjivan Ram, who was more humble and had a healthy perspective towards things.
Today, when the BJP and RSS come down to worshipping him, and the Communists as well land up worshipping Ambedkar, it makes this author think what are we glorifying in the man who became a reflection of Jinnah?
Today, we need to provide a complete new set of ideals in tandem with the modern scheme of things, and lay the foundations of preserving and evolution of Hindu civilisation through mutual trust and community level monitoring, rather than further the ills that the Ambedkar and his proponents unleased upon our nascent polity in 1947 which is being abused everyday ever since while the Dalits still are in a similar deplorable state, and there is aggressive division in the name of caste, as Ambedkarite philosophy became counter-productive.