The Dance of Democracy – A Tribute to Babasaheb Ambedkar
Nine hundred million, a mind boggling figure, are listed and entitled to vote in the ongoing parliamentary elections in India. The exercise, in the biggest democracy of the world, is rightly called ‘Festival of Democracy’. The beauty of the matter is that it based in the dictum of “One vote – One value” as described by Ambedkar himself in the constituent Assembly. It is gratifying to note that governments come and go smoothly through the ballot under the constitutional arrangements. It is a befitting tribute to the mainarchitect of the constitution of India, Babasaheb Ambedkar. We are not to rest here. We are still to go a long way. The dust and din of electioneering, washing of dirty linen in public, polarization on communal lines, caste based vote banks, muscle and money power, immoral and unconstitutional methods to reach power are some of the dark spots and challenges which are haunting us and require to be addressed to transform our biggest democracy into a functional democracy. Moreover, as visualized by Babasaheb Ambedkar the political democracy will have no meaning if it is not transformed into a social and economic democracy. We need to re-dedicate ourselves to achieve this lofty goal. I am confident the awakened young electorate will keep these things in mind while voting or say participating in the on-going dance of democracy.
The legacy of Babasaheb Ambedkar is potent and relevant. It must be adopted and carried forward. With a view to cherish and honour that legacy, I suggested in June, 2015 to the government of PM Narendra Modi to declare April 14, birthday of Babasaheb B.R. Ambedkar, as the International Day of Equality with the cooperation of the UN and followed up the matter occasionally with the EAM Sushma Swaraj and PMO. Much water has flown in the Ganges and the Hudson in New York ( the seat of UN) but the proposal is resting at the desks of MEA and PMO. I reminded EAM Sushma Swaraj through an E-mail message recently on March 26, 2019 as follows:
Respected EAM Sushma Swaraj ji,
I am a retired diplomat of IFS. I take the liberty of re-visiting a subject, International Day of Equality - April 14 - Birthday of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, about which I have been writing to you and other high offices. Though nothing has moved, as far as I know, yet I, as a well wisher of the GOI and MEA in particular, I thought of broaching up the matter for your kind consideration. The attached Non-Paper on the subject would provide more details.
You would appreciate that the time is of essence. Any positive decision by the MEA/GOI under your leadership in this regard will have a an immense and lasting impact in generating much needed goodwill for you and the GOI among the teeming millions and millions of followers of Babasaheb Ambedkar. The birth anniversary of Babasaheb Ambedkar falls on April 14 and the formal announcement may be made appropriately on that day. But early decision and its public pronouncement well before April 11, for obvious reasons of the beginning of the festival of democracy, will go a long way in addressing the cherished wishes not only of the followers of one of the greatest sons of India, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, but also of the international community yearning to establish a just and equitable world order.
I am confident, Madam, my humble submissions would find a due and just consideration with you.
Ambassador - IFS (Retired)
I also twitted the message to her as I was given to understand that she responds to twitter messages promptly. But it seems that they are too busy in the dance of democracy. I am certain they would rush to the statues of Ambedkar to garland and pay glowing tributes to one of the greatest sons on his birth anniversary on April 14 but has no mind and time to respond to the suggestions and proposals of well-meaning ordinary citizens. By ignoring these ground realities, we would be doing so at our own peril. The legacy of Babasaheb Ambedkar will sustain and survive.