Give the Devil his Due but Don't Exaggerate, Please!

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I'm a learner and I'm baffled.

While speaking in a meeting relating to providing safeguard to Scheduled Castes, Mr. Athawale, a member of union cabinet, said, "…Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar has given us a Constitution..." (TOI, Friday, July 22, 2016).

What circumferential knowledge I have gathered during my time in schools and colleges about the background of making the Constitution of India and the formation of the Constituent Assembly with some 17 odd committees constituted therein with the purpose of preparation of reports on various specific issues to be discussed there with 389 members in total and wherein Dr. Ambedkar was heading one such committee viz. 'Drafting Committee'.

The assignment of this committee was to compile the reports of other committees and also the summary of discussions in the said assembly, and reduce the same into legal phraseology that could form the part of enumerated Articles, Sub-Articles, Provisos or Schedules, and so on and so forth in the Constitution of India.

The other committees were:

  • Committee on the Rules of Procedure: Rajendra Prasad
  • Drafting Committee: B.R. Ambedkar
  • Steering Committee: Rajendra Prasad
  • Finance and Staff Committee: Rajendra Prasad
  • Credential Committee: Alladi Krishnaswami Aiyyar
  • House Committee: B. Pattabhi Sitaramayya
  • Order of Business Committee: K. M. Munshi
  • Ad Hoc Committee on National Flag: Rajendra Prasad
  • Committee on Functions of Constituent Assembly: G.V. Mavlankar
  • States Committee: Jawaharlal Nehru
  • Advisory Committee on Fundamental Rights, Minorities and Tribal and Excluded Areas: Vallabhbhai Patel
  • Minorities Sub-Committee: H. C. Mookherjee
  • Fundamental Rights Sub-Committee: J. B. Kriplani
  • North-East Frontier Tribal Areas and Assam Excluded & Partially Excluded Areas Sub-Committee: Gopinath Bardoloi
  • Excluded and Partially Excluded Areas (Other than Those in Assam) Sub-Committee: A. V. Thakkar
  • Union Powers Committee: Jawaharlal Nehru
  • Union Constitution Committee: Jawaharlal Nehru

There were long hours of discussion before the resolutions were drafted into legal provisions from 9 December 1946 to 26 November 1949. By giving undue larger canvass to Dr. Ambedkar in the making of Indian Constitution, we are not only undermining the contribution of other genuinely learned members of the Constituent Assembly who contributed no less than that of Dr. Ambedkar but also distorting the history and thereby misguiding the future generation. In order to appease 'Dalits', a half truth is being spread far and wide for a long time by vested interests in the country.

Please bear the history correct. Dr. Sachchidananda Sinha was the first elected chairman (temporary) of Constituent Assembly. Later Dr. Rajendra Prasad was elected as the president and Its vice-president was Harendra Coomar Mookerjee, a Christian from Bengal and former vice-chancellor of Calcutta University. Also chairing the assembly's Minorities Committee, Mookerjee was appointed governor of West Bengal after India became a republic. Jurist B. N. Rau was appointed constitutional adviser to the assembly; Rau prepared the original draft of the constitution, and was later appointed a judge in the Permanent Court of International Justice in The Hague.(courtesy: Wikipedia)

Mr. Athawale advocates also for encouraging inter-caste marriage in the same meeting. But, as he knows this can't be done in that simplistic way as he speaks, he offers no ways and means. This is oft repeated slogan of despicable minds. He seems in deep slumber and doesn't know the contemporary society wherein the institution of arranged marriage is being replaced by different other parameters and the caste is becoming just secondary.

The marriage now in suburban youth requires qualification and self-reliance of the partner. These so called leaders of Dalit community should work towards making their marriageable youth qualified and self-reliant instead of injecting reactionary provocative venoms in them. In allusion, they are bound to get more alienated because the adage goes, 'as you sow, so shall you reap'.

Mayavati jee, though being a party head, can't make a public speech on her own and is often seen reading from the text prepared obliviously by someone else. How can she make the Dalit youths self-reliant when she herself is dependent on others to make a public transcript which is the basic quality of a public leader? With this quality of statesmanship, can she be a role model? Can she inculcate social primary values in youth of her community? One can't claim to be a leader just by becoming an MLA or an MP, for now everyone knows how elections are managed in this country. The recent examples are in Rajya Sabha including how Vijay Mallya became the MP in Rajya Sabha.

You agree or disagree to the postulate prorogated by Gandhi or Nehru or for that matter any political leader, but they are living in their voluminous written work even after they are physically gone. A leader is required to be a guiding light not during the days he lives but also for the days to come.

The time is difficult. Whole world is in danger both within and beyond. We are also in a dangerous predicament. As Mr. Athawale said in the same meeting, "cow protection is necessary but who will save humans?" But humans are not only Dalits.

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