Babasaheb Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar had dreamt of an India which would have no place for the caste system. He has talked in detail about it in his book Annihilation of Caste. This book continues to be relevant even today. Forward Press has done an admirable job of publishing a Hindi translation of the book. Every youth should read this book – whether one is a Dalit or a Savarna. Ambedkarism is the only option for India. This was stated by Mata Prasad, former governor of Arunachal Pradesh, on 14 October 2018 in Lucknow. He was addressing the Bahujan litterateurs, who had gathered there to mark the ‘Dhamma Diksha Diwas’.
The event was organized by Buddha Ambedkar Kalyan Association, Uttar Pradesh, at the Municipal Corporation auditorium. Bahujan intellectuals from different states were present. At the beginning, Bhikkhu Sangh, led by Dr Upananda, performed Buddha Vandana and offered Trisharan Panchshil.
Those present at the conference included Dr B.C. Uike from Madhya Pradesh; Dr Ranjana Rawat from Dehradun; Dr Siddharth from Forward Press, Delhi; N. K. Gautam, superintendent engineer in irrigation department of Uttar Pradesh government; retired IPS officer Saroj; and Dr Arvind Kumar Sahayak. In his address, the chief guest, R. D. Prasad, retired chief engineer of the irrigation department, called on the assemblage to take the social and Dhamma mission of Babasaheb to every village and town. Dr Siddharth talked in detail about the social revolution initiated by Babasaheb and his philosophy.
N. K. Gautam said that on 14 October, Emperor Ashoka overcame the idea of violence and adopted Buddhism, a religion based on non-violence, fraternity, equality and friendship. That is why this day is important. He specially mentioned Jati ka Vinash published by Forward Press, which is a translation of Ambedkar’s Annihilation of Caste. He said that other translations of the tract are also available but Forward Press’ translation is a complete one as it also includes the correspondence between Ambedkar, Gandhi and Santram B. A. And it also includes Ambedkar’s first research work (1916) in Columbia University titled Castes in India: Their Mechanism, Genesis and Development.
Poetry recitation by Sunita Bauddh, a poetess from Uttar Pradesh, impressed the audience. Dancer Kiran Bauddh gave an enchanting recital on Dhamma geet and the orchestra led by Rachna Bauddha of Janpad Auraiya added zing to the event. At the end of the programme, notables working in the social and creative-writing fields were feted.
Translation: Amrish, copy-editing: Lokesh
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