Skip to main content

Govt of India "excludes" Ambedkar's top ideological treatise "Annihilation of Caste" from Collected Works

By Rajiv Shah
In a shocking revelation that is likely to create a major ripple among India’s top Dalit rights activists, the Government of India has published Collected Works of Bhimrao Ambedkar (CWBA) in Hindi without 11 of Ambedkar’s books, including two which are considered his ideologically significant works, “Annihilation of Caste” and “Riddles of Hinduism.”
Published by the Ambedkar Foundation, which is a Government of India body under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, a senior journalist-researcher, Dilip Mandal, has revealed that this is particularly surprising as the Foundation is “the sole publisher of Babasaheb's writings and speeches in Hindi.”
Top litterateur and writer Arundhati Roy recently called “Annihilation of Caste” Ambedkar’s “most radical text”. She said, “It is not an argument directed at Hindu fundamentalists or extremists, but at those who considered themselves moderate, those whom Ambedkar called the best of Hindus”.
Roy says, “Ambedkar’s point is that to believe in the Hindushastras and to simultaneously think of oneself as liberal or moderate is a contradiction in terms.” Interestingly, soon after the text of “Annihilation of Caste (AoC)” was published Mahatma Gandhi responded to Ambedkar’s “provocation”, but also pointed towards why it should be discussed by Hindus.
In his article titled “Riddles in Moditva: Publishing Ambedkar without AoC & Riddles in Hinduism” in Roundtable India, Mandal wonders, “So, for you, what are the most seminal texts of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, the constitution maker of India? What names come to your mind or your imagination?”
Mandal
Mandal – former Managing Editor, India Today group and currently researcher at Jawaharlal Nehru University -- asks, “Is it ‘Annihilation of Caste’, or is it ‘Riddles in Hinduism’, or is it something to do with the Roundtable Conference or his works related to Poona Pact, or his debates with Gandhi or all of these?”
“Now imagine a set of books, with the branding of Collected Works of Bhimrao Ambedkar having none of these texts, but someone is still calling them as the CWBA. And that 'someone', in this instance, is nobody other than the Modi Government”, Mandal comments, adding, “This is exactly the farce that is being played out now.”
Mandal informs, “Apparently, Ambedkar Foundation is in the process of publishing a new set and in the intervening period, this is what they have to offer to the readers. But at the foundation, nobody knows when the new books will be published. This is for the Hindi edition of the CWBA.”
He adds, “For the English originals, the situation is more complicated. As the foundation has not received the No Objection Certificate or the NOC from the Maharashtra government, the copyright holder of these works, the foundation cannot publish the English versions of the CWBA.”
Points out Mandal, “It's intriguing that the Maharashtra government holds the publishing rights for the writings and speeches of Babasaheb and it's holding them so tight that a body of the central government finds itself handicapped to publish that work”, adding, “Meanwhile the citizens of the country have no other option but to buy the truncated set of CWBA.”
“This blatant act of truncating the works of Babasaheb is happening, when the Nation is celebrating the 125th year of his birth. Prime Minister Narendrabhai Modi himself has taken the lead in these celebrations. The Indian Parliament has held a two day special session to mark this occasion, and a special commemorative coin has been issued and so on and so forth”, says Mandal.

Comments

Todd Peterson said…
We need people to speak Loudly for the Truth, the whole Truth, the unabridged Truth! Don't let the politicians set the debate. That is for us, the devotees of Love and Reuth!

TRENDING

Call to support IIM-Bangalore professor, censured for seeking action against Uniliver

Counterview Desk
Sections of the Indian Institute of Managements (IIMs) across India have strongly reacted to the decision to censure Dr Deepak Malghan, a faulty at IIM-Bangalore. Prabhir Vishnu Poruthiyil, who is faculty at IIM-Tiruchirapalli, has sought wider solidarity with Dr Malghan, saying, "The administration has censured Deepak for merely suggesting a meaningful action against Hindustan Unilever for their abysmal environmental record" by “disinviting” it for campus placement.

Actionable programme for 2019 polls amidst lynch mobs, caste violence, hate mongering

Counterview Desk
Reclaiming the Republic, a civil rights network, has released a document prepared under the chairmanship of Justice AP Shah (retired) -- and backed, among others, by Supreme Court advocate Prashant Bhushan, bureaucrat-turned-human rights activist Harsh Mander, economist Prabhat Patnaik, Right to transparency activist Anjali Bhardwaj and social scientist Yogendra Yadav  (click HERE for full list) -- with the "aim" of putting forth policy and legislative reforms needed to “protect” and “strengthen” the Constitutional safeguards for India’s democratic polity.

Noam Chomsky, top scholars ask NRIs to take stand on human rights violations in India

Counterview Desk
Renowned world scholars, including Noam Chomsky, James Petras, Angela Davis, Fredric Jameson, Bruno Latour, Ilan Pappe, Judith Butler, among others, have issued a statement castigating the Narendra Modi government for allegedly creating an environment of fear through arrests, intimidation and violence.

India under Modi "promoted" crony business, protected financial fraudsters, fueled bigotry

By Sandeep* and Rahul Pandey**
Narendra Modi's ascension to power was accompanied with jubilation and expectation. His supporters were expecting an end to era of corruption and initiation of good governance which was described as Achche Din. His party's adherence to idea of nationalism was believed to make India a vibrant country and guide India to be a world leader. He gave the slogan of 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas' conveying that his government was for all.
Corruption The government system is infested with corruption. A minimum of 10% is siphoned off from government schemes and projects, some of which goes back to political party in power and remaining is pocketed by various administrative, executive and political functionaries. This corruption continues and has increased. Now an additional Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) person working as Official on Special Duty or some equivalent position in every government department also has a share in this booty.
The Narendra M…

Inviting Rajapaksa to India "insult" to 1,40,000 Tamils killed by Sri Lankan army

Counterview Desk
In the context of Sri Lankan opposition leader Mahinda Rajapaksa being invited in India, about 75 human rights activists*, claiming to be concerned about rights violations during the civil war in Sri Lanka, especially in 2009, have joined together to express their dissent through a statement.

A Godse legacy? BJP rulers have "refrained" from calling Gandhi Father of the Nation

By Dr Hari Desai*
What an agony! On one hand, the entire India is celebrating the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but on the other side, so-called Hindu Mahasabha members have been found mock-enacting the killing of the Mahatma and celebrating the murder by distributing sweets!

No aadhaar, no ration? Hard blow by Gujarat govt on poor and marginalized

By Pankti Jog*
Only those who have aadhaar registration and linked it with ration card will get ration from a Public Distribution System (PDS) shop. This decision of the Gujarat government has hit very badly thousands of poor and marginalized communities of Gujarat, especially during the drought year.

Post-advisory, Govt of India appears reluctant to ban e-cigarettes, "harmful" to kids

By Rajiv Shah
Is the Government of India dilly-dallying over the issue of banning e-cigarettes, which have been declared by anti-tobacco activists across the world as providing “an entryway to nicotine addiction”, especially among the kids? It would seem so, if the latest developments are any guide.

Poser to Modi: Why is Gujarat not fulfilling Constitutional obligations to minorities?

Counterview Desk
In an open letter, Mujahid Nafees, convener, Minority Coordination Committee (MCC), a Gujarat-based civil rights organization, has accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi on infringing upon MCC activists’ constitutional right to protest. Nafees says, they had no other demands except that the Gujarat government should move towards fulfilling the constitutional obligations towards minorities and international treaties to which India is a signatory.

World Bank needs a new perspective on development, not just a new president

By Maju Varghese*
The resignation of the World Bank President Jim Yong Kim was an unexpected development given the fact that he had three more years to complete his tenure. Resignations at such a high level after bidding for a second term is unusual which prompts people to think what would have led to the act itself.