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Fiinovation: Remembering The Architect Of The Constitution Of India
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14th April is observed as 'Ambedkar Jayanti' to commemorate the memory of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar who was born on this day in the year 1891. The day is a public holiday in all the Indian States and every year the President and Prime Minister pay homage to his statue at the Parliament. Fiinovation takes this opportunity to honour Dr. Ambedkar on his achievements and contributions towards the Indian society.
Dr. Ambedkar was born in a poor Mahar family who struggled to become the chairman of the Constitution drafting committee and later on went on to become the first law minister of Independent India. He campaigned for the upliftment of backward castes and converted to Buddhism starting a Modern Buddhist Movement which led to conversion of thousands of lower caste members to Buddhism. He was the 14th child of his parents and the only member of the family who could complete his graduation. He eventually earned a law degree and doctorates for his study and research in law, economics and political science from Columbia University and the London School of Economics. Ambedkar gained a reputation as a scholar and practiced law for a few years. He published journals to advocate for the political rights and social freedom for India's untouchables. He was also an economist and played a crucial role in inception of the Reserve Bank of India in 1934, which was based on ideas that he shared with the Hilton Young Commission. He was awarded the Bharat Ratna, the highest civilian award in the year 1991.
Ambedkar played crucial role in many aspects both pre and post independence. While practicing in Bombay High court he tried to uplift the untouchables by educating them. By 1927 Ambedkar launched active movements against untouchability in India. He began the advocacy efforts by facilitating public movements and marches to open up public drinking water resources. He also began a struggle for the right to enter Hindu temples. Due to his popularity he was invited to London Round Table conference in 1932, that Gandhi opposed as he feared a fierce backlash between the untouchables and Brahmins. Later Dr. Ambedkar was forced to come to an agreement with Gandhi who was fasting in Yerwada Jail in Poona. Ambedkar condemned the practice of child marriage in India and was vocal about the extent of mistreatment of women in Indian society.
After Independence when the British transferred the power to leaders of Higher casts, he was invited to become part of the government which he accepted and became the first law minister. Ambedkar was against Article 370 in the Constitution, which gives a special status to the State of Jammu and Kashmir, and it was put against his wishes. Ambedkar had clearly told Sk. Abdullah: "You wish India should protect your borders, she should build roads in your area, she should supply you food grains, and Kashmir should get equal status as India. But Government of India should have only limited powers and Indian people should have no rights in Kashmir. To give consent to this proposal, would be a treacherous thing against the interests of India and I, as the Law Minister of India, will never do it."
Following the stalling of Parliament due to his draft of the Hindu Code Bill, which sought to expound gender equality in the laws of inheritance and marriage, he resigned from the Parliament in 1951. Ambedkar independently contested an election in 1952 to the lower house of parliament, the Lok Sabha, but was defeated. He was appointed to the upper house, of parliament, the Rajya Sabha in March 1952 and remained as a member till his death in 1956.
Fiinovation have always followed his principles while working towards the upliftment of the marginalised sections of the society. Fiinovation acknowledges the efforts put in by government and other agencies, however there is still a lot of work that is needed to be done to achieve equality and end discrimination in India.
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