An Open Letter to My Friends – International Day of Equality
These days, I am regularly writing in these columns about the International Day of Equality to follow the Road Map shared on April 14 to pursue the proposal resting with the GOI. On April 14, I wrote to EAM Dr. S. Jaishankar followed by a letter to the Chairman of the Forum of Scheduled Caste MPs and MLAs onApril 22. With a view to provide the proposal further impetus from political quarters, I wrote to about 80 MPs and MLAs 0n April 27/30 and solicited their understanding and support to honour the greatest son of India, Babasaheb Ambedkar. One may wonder as to what is the hurry? Yes, time is of essence. We are to catch up with a tight schedule – convince the GOI to consider, decide and declare its support to the proposal resting with it since June, 2015. It is hoped that the GOI would make an official demarche to the UN well before the next session of the UNGA to be held in September, 2020. It explains the urgency and the sense of hurry with regard to the proposal.
I have been interacting with my friends both formally and informally with regard to the proposal on April 14, birth anniversary of Babasaheb Ambedkar as the International Day of Equality as and when got an opportunity. Some of them showed interest and some remained silent but none of them, as I feel, disregarded it or expressed any disagreement. If you permit me to be a bit candid in this regard, let me register my sense of regret andsay that I expected somewhat pro-active support from my educated and well placed friends. But it was not forthcoming. It gives me a bad feeling when I often hear from some of our self proclaimed leaders and half literate so called Ambedkarites shouting that ‘Ambedkar rightly said that educated class of his followers ditched him’. They leave no occasion to down-size and criticize the educated lot of the community to register their point. Let us eradicate this stigma inflicted on the educated lot among us by doing something worthwhile. With this background, I decided to write an open letter, which is appended below, to my friends to seek their favour and support in pursuing the proposal on International Day of Equality. It is gratifying to note that the response from my friends is heartwarming. I quote some of the latest responses:
i) You can put my name. I am convinced for this noble cause. Writing separately would color the issue differently. So you can add my name in the platform. I assure you I shall exert all available resources to mobilize and achieve our goal. Regards - Dr Rahul Kumar - Delhi
ii) Good Morning. Will do the needful. - Sunil Vats - Jalandhar
iii) Sir you are doing a great job, I'm all with you from the core of my heart. I try to spread your message to my friends and associations I'm associated with. Regards.
Dr.Rahul Jassi – Phagwara (Kapurthala)
iv) I am happy that you have reactivated the proposal of getting the birthday of our revered Father Dr. Baba Sahib Ambedkar as International Day of Equality. You really deserve hearty congratulations on your move. I shall be very happy to extend my full support for this noble cause.With best wish. - G.R.Summan - Delhi
v) Well done sir It's big and pious initiative. Regards
Principal Dr. Parvinder Singh - Hoshiarpur
vi) Dear Sir, fully support your good proposal and Endeavour. – Principal Dr. Kulwant Singh Phull – Nadala (Kaputhala)
We are to catch up with the time schedule. My humble submission to my friends, a creamy layer of the community, is to kindly consider the proposal and extend all possible support to it by writing to the EAM/PM (e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org) either under your personal hand and seal or through the outfits you may be associated with. Should anyone require any information or clarification, I, your humble friend, am always available. I close with a quote to explain my state of mind while writing to my worthy friends:
“It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Text of the open letter dated May 8, 2020 to my friends
May 8, 2020
An Open Letter to My Friends
Subject: April 14, birth anniversary of Babasaheb Ambedkar, as International Day of Equality
First of let me wish you all the best in the run up to our fight against the deadly Corona Virus. With a view to kill the boredom of the lockdown, I spend my time in reading and writing on matters of interest – The Lighter side of Corona Virus. These blogs may be seen, if of interest, at my blog site: diplomatictitbits.blogspot.com – Second subject which engaged me these days is the proposal on International Day of Equality of which you might have heard of. I thought of sharing with you the latest position on this second engagement through this open letter. Kindly spare sometime for me.
Without going into the history, it would suffice to say that I initiated the proposal to declare April 14, birth anniversary of Babasaheb Ambedkar, as International Day of Equality in June, 2015 in the run up to celebrate the 125t birth anniversary of the great icon of ours. It was pursued diligently with the GOI and others ever since but nothing much moved. The proposal saw the light of the day on April 6, 2020 with the City of Burnaby in Canada proclaiming April 14 as ”Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Day of Equality”. It gave some encouragement and I resolved to revisit the subject and pursue the matter in my own humble way with the help and support of the stake holders and my friends like you.
Accordingly, I wrote to EAM Dr. S Jaishankar on April 15, 2020 the details of which may be seen at the link: http://diplomatictitbits.blogspot.com/2020/04/the-road-map-to-realize-proposal-on.html
As a follow up of the Road Map to pursue the proposal, I wrote to the Chairman of the Forum of Scheduled Caste MPs and MLAs, Sardar
Charanjit Singh Atwal on April 22, 2020 which may be seen at the link: http://diplomatictitbits.blogspot.com/2020/04/following-up-road-map-international-day.html
I may also add that I shared a Road Map to pursue the proposal on April 14, 2020 providing a brief background of the proposal and detailing the further course of action. The details of the Road Map are also available in the links given in my letters referred to in the preceding paragraphs of this letter.
All said and done, you all know that realizing the goal is a huge task and requires all and outright support of each and every one of us. We are to go a long way. In this regard, I request and solicit your help and support. Kindly go through the details given in the links provided in the letter and respond. I am open to any suggestion from you to carry forward the proposal on the International Day of Equality in a more concerted and energetic way. I count on you.
I will continue to follow the Road Map in pursuing the proposal with your help and support