Saturday, February 16, 2019

Shri Sant Ram B.A. (14th Feb, 2015 to 5th June,1988 ) A Dalit Hero.

Shri Sant Ram B.A. (14th Feb, 2015 to 5th June,1988  ) A Dalit Hero.                      
      Shri Sant Ram B.A. a Dalit potter who makes earthen wares (Khumhar,Kumbhkar) by caste. His caste was neither very low as untouchables nor high like Brahmins but falls in fourth category of Hindu caste classification a Shudra,which is touchable as far his work but untouchable for social status. He was born on 14th Feburary 1887 at Puranni Bassi Hoshiarpur( Punjab). His father Shri Ramdas Gohil  was a businessman and perhaps one of the first Indian to go to trade between Ladakh to Yarkhand Turkestan in the Tarim Basin in Turkestan of the old ( Xinjiang Province of China at present) ,so he was quite rich. Sant Ram’s mother’s name was Malini and she was second wife of his father. His father had re-married after the death of his first wife . Shri Ramdas Gohil had seven sons and a daughter. Shri Ramdas had given good education to his children a rare thing for Dalits of those times. Shri Sant Ram got education in his village school, Jalander and at Lahore( now in Pakistan). He faced caste hate in a big way in his school and in college hostel. He was asked by high caste students not to dine with them while sitting on the same mat in the hostel. Sant Ram Ji was married to Gangadevi( Gango) in 1899 when he was of 12 years age They had One son named Vedbarat three daughters two of whom died in fancy. Their surviving daughter was named Gargi. Sant Ram passed B.A in 1909 from Lahore University. He stood first in his class in Persian and was awarded. He served as teacher for some time and then worked with a forest contractor at kinnaur ( HP). He was a devoted Arya Samaji sect of Soami Dayanand Saraswati. He was perhaps first Dalit journalist and  started “Usha” monthly magazine in 1914 from Lahore. Due to paucity of funds and start of first word war this magazine was stoped in April,1915. He also was publisher of Arya Samaj  Urdu monthly magazine “ Arya Musaffir” Between 1912 to 1963 he wrote nearly 77  books, booklets assay’s  on different subjects and was also awarded several times. He knew English Punjabi, Hindi, Marathi, Guajarati and Bengali   languages. When he wanted to start social  work for uplifting Dalits and conversion back to Hinduism to those Dalits who had converted earlier to Islam and Christianity( Shudikarn) he did not get the required support from the  Hindu Arya Samaji leaders    who wanted external dressing only  of caste system and did not want to uproot or annihilate it. Sant Ram distanced from it devoting himself for Dalit upliftment social work. To abolish caste system he worked to establish in 1922 his own organization “Pat-Todak Mandal” with some other likeminded Arya Samaji persons. It has enrollment of about 500 persons. One of the plank of his organization was to promote inter caste marriages and to get abolished caste system from within the Depressed classes also. Since Arya Samajis did not co-operate with Jat-Pat Todakl Mandal ideals too, so Sh. Sant Ram made it an independent organization to continue his efforts for achieving his set goals.
 Shri Sant Ram ji writes in his biography “ Mere Jivan Ke Anubhav” that  Jat Pat Torak Mandal deputation headed by him met Mahatma Gandhi at Lahore in 1933- 34. While talking Mahatam Gandhi supported Jat Pat ( Caste system) .He said in Jat Pat one has ease to find employment in his ancestral profession which was difficult without it. Sri Sant Ram questened why Mahatama Ji was not opposing caste system which has ruined the untouchables. Mahatam Ji in turn asked  you tell me why he ( Mahatma) was not opposing caste system directly while opposing the British regime. On this Sant Ram replied that   now not only upper caste Hindu businessmen  and  religious Mathaderaj (headmen) were supporting Mahatma’s movement by donating  Lakhs  but even Muslim and Christens are supporting you in a big way. In case Mahatma opposes caste system not a single Marvari Seth( Bussiness magnet)  will support him with a Futi Kodi ( counterfeit penny coin). During this conversation Seth Jamna Lal Bazaj and Kasturba Gandhi were also present.Countering Mahatma’s support to caste system for getting ensured parental job access , Sant Ram ji asked Mahatma why he was not engaged in selling grocery his ancestral business and instead had adopted a Brahmin’s profession of preaching. On this Mahatma .
Shri Sant Ram wrote on 28th February  1941 a letter to Mohammad Ali Jinnah ( Later Quaid-i-Azam of Father on Nation) Pakistan)  asking him that in England there are many Christen convert Muslims like Lord Hundle. But they never claim that their economic, social and political interests including their history, language or their religious icons are different than Christians. But when a Hindu gets converted as Muslim in India next day all his economic, social and political interests including his history, language or religious icons change overnight. He says next day that his icons are Mahmood and Abul Quasim not Rama and Krishna. Why so?
Mohammad Ali Jinnah replied this in a public meeting in presence of over 20,000 audiences on 2 March,1941.When a person converts from Christianity to Islam he is nor boycotted religiously, socially, economically, even inter caste marriages continue. His inter dinning is not boycotted. But In India when  a Hindu gets converted as Muslim the next day Hindus boycott him religiously, socially, economically. His inter dinning or inter marriages are stopped completely. So the wins of Hindus are our (Muslims) defeats. Our social boycott is the reason of all out conflict of our interests with Hindus.
 Shri Sant Ram writes in biography that he was convince by the thoughts of Baba Sahib Dr. Ambedkar that Caste cannot uprooted till the Hindu religious motivations are not destroyed completely.  So Shri Sant Ram invited Dr. Ambedkar through his letter dated December 12,1935, to preside over  1936 annual convention  of the Jat-Pat Todak Mandal to be held at Lahore and also deliver his presidential address. Dr. Ambedkar wrote the Presidential address, but the Mandal  committee wanted some changes in it, to which Dr. Ambedkar did not agree. The convention was cancelled sin die and the presidential address was published by Baba sahib as “Annihilation of Caste” in 1936 itself and this book is considered as one of the best books written by the author. It has gone into so many reprints since then. Sant Ram himself translated it into Hindi and published in the Kranti  an Urdu monthly magazine. Had Sant Ram sided with caste Hindus and Congress party  he would have got benefitted many a ways,but he preferred to side with the just  interests of Dalits  and live his life in his way. Sant Ram authored many books as well. He breathed his last on 5th June 1988. He shall be long remembered for his fight for the cause of Dalits.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Derailed Goal of Indian Equality

   Er. H.R.Phonsa                                      Chartered Engineer(I)         
BE.(Civil) MIE, LMIRC  ,FIV(INDIA)                       ( -0191-2432712,9419134060/93136
Ex. EXECUTIVE ENGINEER                        OFF/R #       63/5NANAK NAGAR,JAMMU TAWI 180004.
        Recipient of                                         
                                                    i) Dr Ambedkar National Award  2012                                                      
 (ii) Dr.B.R. Ambedkar State Award ( J&K State) 1994                     
iii) Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Distinguished Service Award 2003
iv) Babu Jagjivan Ram centenary state( J&K) Award
v) Dr B.R. Ambedkar Plaque of Honour 2009 ,2011
vi) Ashoka Mitra Award 2012
vii) Dr. Ambedkar Award2014 from S/C,S/T& OBC employees Association  of JU.
                                 a) Writer of Dr. Ambedkar and His Associates.
                                  b) Co author of Sant Sheromani Sain Ji Maharaj
                               c) Writer on Blogspot Dalit Vision, Depressed classes
                             Spokesman the Bhartiya Dalit Sahitya Akademy Delhi, J&K ( Regd)                ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------                    
                                      Derailed Goal of Indian Equality.  Image result for Constitution of India                                            
                                           ( Revisiting Constitution on the 70th Republic Day falling on  26-01-2019)   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The nature has bestowed India with abundant natural resources. It has also enjoyed the title of Sonney Ki Chirya (Golden Sparrow) for the excellence vision of our ancestors. We rightly claim to be the oldest civilization of the world. Despite all this the distribution of National resources among all sections of society have been unfair from centuries with distinction of continuing this even after attaining freedom seven decades ago. In ever selfish  human world colour and economic disparities continues. But India in addition to  the colour and economic disparities ,the caste hate and division disparities are followed. The colour and economic disparities can be won over but not caste hate among Hindus. Efforts of  caste reformists have had little success.  On attaining  freedom from the foreign ruler in 1947, India adopted  on 26th January 1950 Our constitution with basic ideals as  SOVEREIGN SOCIALIST SECULAR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC and to secure to all its citizens JUSTICE, social, economic and political; LIBERTY of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship; EQUALITY of status and of opportunity; and to promote among them all FRATERNITY assuring the dignity of the individual and the unity and integrity of the Nation.                                                                                                                                                             
Despite all round progress since 1947 a larger chunk of population still feels it is not equally cared. The constitution guarantee of EQUALITY of status and of OPPORTUNITY   is sever casualties as also  many other Fundamental Rights. Even after attaining freedom country has mutually witnessed India slipping into two Bharats Rich or Elite and Poor or Deprived Bharat having hardly anything as equality social, economic, caste unification meeting point. Even in the all-round country progress the condition of Deprived Bhartiyas have changed but little. It looks as if  India is being run as a business house by Elite Bhartiya and not a welfare state as per the canons of Constitution creating all pleasures for the Elite Bhartiyas at the cost of discomforts to the other.                                                                                                                                            Global Wealth Report 2016 places India as the second most unequal country worldwide   ( the Credit Suisse Research Institute). A study by a Berlin-based NGO pegs India as ‘Most Corrupt Country in Asia-Pacific Region. Records say that  since 1951-2018   nearly  207 scams took place involving enormous money  . In nine shamefully top scams (2003-2018) Rs 6,71,420 crores were pilfer- aged by  corrupt politicians, business persons including  their relations and  henchmen.  Elite India is for Bullet Train and the other is for increasing trains frequency and increase of bogies to make them climb down from train roof tops into bogies. We are a home of 21% of world’s poor. As of 2014 showing 58% of the total Indian population were living on less than $3.10 per day. Economic gap between Elite and Deprived Bhartiyas is widening with every passing day. Elite Bharat boosts of 121 billionaires (2018)  where as in poverty ridden  Bharatiyas  from 1998 to 2018 as many as 3, 00,000 farmers committed suicides( (Wikipedia). If effected farm labourers are added this figure may shoot up many times.
Indian economic capital Mumbai has $410 billion ( Rs 27.88 lakh crores) GDP, over 6 % of National GDP  ( 2018-19 estimated).  But Maharashtra sadly witnessed suicides of poor Bhartiyas farmers as large as 70,000 (1995-2017). Mumbai red light areas, bars, brothels  have over 1,00,000 prostitutes, (sex workers) out of  their country wide  estimated population of  6,57,829 (Nov.2016 UNAIDS). Underage population of prostitutes is estimated at 12 Lakhs .  All these unfortunate ladies come  from deprived Indians with compulsions of bread earning. The “The Quint, Jan. 2018” quotes that Indian top one per cent of the population  is owning nearly 73% of the total  National wealth generated showing that their wealth increased  by over Rs 20.9 lakh crores during  2017 , an amount nearly equivalent to Union budget 2017-18  pegged at Rs 21.47 Lakh Crores. However 67 crores unfortunate deprived Bhartiyas, making half of India, saw their wealth rise by just  01 per cent. 
Unfortunate among poor Bharat 454 million ( 38. 2%) of total population lived below poverty line ( Rangarajan committee report 2014). India houses 1/3 of world’s hungry and nearly 20 crores go hungry daily. The undernourished Indian population is as high as 14.5% with, Children below 5years age accounting for 30.7%. These unfortunates are non but Deprived free Bhartiyas.  Defective planning manned mostly by Elite Bhartiyas 67 million tons of food grains worth Rs92,000 cores go waste annually ( Clean India, May 12,2018) where as 7000 daily die of hunger. Recently World Bank reported that 60% of food subsidies do not reach poor and are siphoned off by middleman say Elite Bharat. Late Rajiv Gandhi Indian Prime Ministers said, in 1985, that out of Rupee One spent by government only 15 paise reach the intended downtrodden beneficiary. After 33 years again Indian PM  , N.Modi accepted it  with a little modifications telling Government development schemes initialed in the name of  poor, are enriching non poor.
 Unfortunately so claimed progressing Bharat had in 2011 over 32 crores illiterates (26% of population), 60 million children of 6- 14 years of age are out of schools, large numbers of  school drop outs, 90% of those who attend schools read very little. Despite this there is a total divide in imparting education for Elite and Deprived Bhartiyas ,  a basic need and Fundamental Right of every Indian child. In Deprived Bharat many schools are run from under the tree shades with human needs infrastructures missing, student teacher ratio is as poor as 42:1 in many schools.Poor Bhartiya Children have right to go to school not quality education .
The Elite Bharat lives in palatial buildings with large lawns, ultramodern gadgets fitted. Where as in deprived unfortunate Bharat living in slums has increased from 5.20 crores in 2001 to 12.8 crores in 2017. Four metropolitans Indian citieshave slum population varies from 15% 42% and Chennai 28%. One richest Indian has 27 storey house in4532 m2  plot in valued over $2billion. VVIP leader samadhies in  Delhi occupy   245 hectors excluding Atal Behari Bajpai Samadhi. Where as  Carpet area of a house in EWS, LIG in Govt scheme house for poor is 30m2and 60m2 respectively.
Tricks of Elite to swindle money include NPA. In March 2018 NPA of   26 PSU Banks stood at 10.25 Lakh Crores . As per CBI’s report disclosed in Indian Parliament Elite but unprincipled Bhartiya illegally hold US$500 billions in Switzerland Banks.  In Panama leaks Panama leaks (Estimated Rs 1140 crores) show names of high placed politicians including their relatives, business persons and many bureaucrats.
Despite  clear cut Laws to evict land encroachers  ,large chunk of government  lands are under illegal encroachments by  influential  persons .In J&K State alone 18,00,000 Kanals or 90000 Hectare government land is illegally encroached ( Daily Excelsior
The chances of reduction of gap between influential and deprived Bhartiyas seem little in the near future. The possibility of change lies faithfully implementing the constitution provisions of share of deprived Bhartiyas in all the four wings of democracy viz:  political, administrative, judiciary and media. But the elected representative too comes from the Elite Bhartiyas their concern for the left over Indian lot has been seen as lack lust. In the 16th Lok Sabha we have 449 crorepaties MP’s. The Rajya Sabha has 90% MP’s crorepaties  The Chief Election Commissioner has shown inability to  check abuse of  black money in elections . The SC has also left this matter  of check criminalization of politics to parliament,which has as many as 186 Mps,s with criminal case and  have 112  pending serious  criminal cases against them( 16th Lok Sabha).
The infamous caste-class-power nexus, renders most program implementation vulnerable to hijack through the unholy conspiracy among the rural /urban Elite to the detriment of the rural poor and finally, lax oversight and soft mechanisms to check and to correct inappropriate program implementation.
Of late the Constitution burning incidents are taking place besides open talks by ruling dispensation members to change the Constitution are no healthy signs for the country.
Elite Indians has created a world of their own with fencing so high and strong that hardly any person from the poverty ridden Deprived  Bhartiyas can penetrate in their domain.  Elite Bhartiyas move by daily rise or fall of census while poor by the daily market cost of Dal ( pulses) and  Atta (flour).
 Continuity of these trends are signs to lead country towards civil war, so need iron hands  free of caste prejudices to check  For better future of India ,let us listen seriously to Soami  Vivekananda  “A distribution of pain and pleasure is better, than always the same persons having pains and pleasure” .
Words 1452                                                                    Er.H.R.Phonsa

Sunday, January 6, 2019


 (Rememering on his 115th B Day falling today the 6th Jan.2019,the man who Gave Jai Bhim Salutaion)
Shri Hardas Laxmarirao Nagrare, a Mahar by caste was a great believer in the philosophy of Dr. Ambedkar.He was also a committed follower of B.R. Ambedkar. Shri Hardas was born on 6th January, 1904 at Kamathi, Nagpur in Maharashtra. His father Shri Laxmarirao Nagrare was a clerk in the Railway Department. Shri Babu Hardas had sharp intellect and passed his matriculation in 1920 from Patwardhan High School at Nagpur. Shri Hardas gained nearness to Swami Brahmanand of Arya Samaj Nagpur who taught him Sanskrit. Shri Hardas had also gained proficiency in the Marathi language. He was pained to see deplorable conditions of untouchables of his locality. Accordingly he decided to work for their all round development. He achieved a great success in his desired goals in 1921 when he started a
weekly Maharatha from Nagpur for spreading social awakenings among the Dalits.
Babu Hardas met Dr. B.R. Ambedkar in 1928 for the first time. Though he had started his social activities long back, his political career got a push with this meeting. In the same year, Dr. Ambedkar requested him to give his witness in front of Simon Commission. Later in year 1930-31, with regards to the Second Round Table Conference, when question arouse about the real leadership of untouchables, Babu Hardas sent a telegram to Ramsay MacDonald, then Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, that Dr. Ambedkar is the real leader of untouchables and not Mahatma Gandhi. He also created an opinion about this in different parts of the country He managed to send a total of 32 telegrams to Mr. McDonald by various untouchable leaders from different states. Both Dr. B.R. Ambedkar and Babu Hardas wanted greater participation of the depressed classes in the legislative assemblies. A meeting of Depressed Classes of CPand Berar was organized on 29th March, 1929 at Jalgaon-Jamod. Dr. Ambedkar presided over this important meeting. Babu Hardas started the practice of exchanging the greeting Jai Bhim as a mark of friendly gesture in the year 1937.This showed his love and commitment to the ideals of his leader Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar.
Shri Hardas Laxmarirao Nagrare observed that the Bidi (a thin, Indian cigarette filled with tobacco flake and wrapped in a tendu or possibly even Bauhinia racemosa leaf tied with a string at one end.) workers were the most exploited lot in the un-organized sector. Majority of Bidi workers were Dalits including women and children. So he started the bidi work on cooperative basis. His idea became a great successful. Presently over 3 million Indians are employed in the manufacture of beedies. He founded in 1930 Madhaya Pradesh Bidi Mazdoor Sangh for the welfare of Bidi workers. He was elected its Secretary and Shri Ramachandra Phule (M.L.C) as President.
Shri Hardas was convinced that women are back bone of the successful nation and to train them shall benefit the whole society. So he opened a Mahila Ashram (Women Home) at Nagpur to impart training to Dalit women in household activities. He thought that emancipation of the Dalits from the man made discriminately lies in their unity to challenge the perpetrators of atrocities. Consistent with the social customs of that time, he married at a very early age of 16 with Shahubai. They got married in 1920.
Babu Shri Hardas founded the Mahar Samaj organization in 1922 to rally Dalits communities under one banner. He was Secretary of organization. He also knew that to maintain discipline in the Dalits a disciplined youth wing was needed. Therefore he formed Mahar Sevak Pathak to organize the decentralized youth force to protect the Dalits against atrocities and to maintain discipline in the society. It was to act as volunteer corps. Shri Hardas was convinced that sub Castes concept among Dalits was working against their unity. In the caste concept every caste thinks it superior to the other castes. This was causing a hindrance in Dalit unity, whereas all their social, education, economic problems are in common. He was convinced that the solution to their miseries lies in Dalit unity. Therefore he sincerely endeavored to remove the sub-caste barrier from the Depressed Classes. He used to invite the members of all sub-castes among the Depressed Classes to the community dinner arranged on the occasion of death anniversary of the great saint Shri Chokhamela. This was arranged in the temple of revered Dalit Saint Chokhamela at Nagpur. Saint Chokhamela was a great 14th century saint from Mahar community. The Depressed people normally gave a very nice response to the same but it needed great deal of persuasions. During all these years, Babu Hardas kept himself informed with the movements elsewhere in the country being organized for the betterment of Dalits and to get them all civil rights as per global norms.
Since Babu Shri Hardas was of the opinion that Depressed Classes people need to get political power to bring them in the main stream. So in 1923 he appealed to the Governor of CP and Berar to nominate members from the Depressed Classes to the Legislative Council, District Local Boards and Municipalities. The Governor, however, assured that he would consider the demands sympathetically.
He was convinced that all the irrational, immoral and superstitious habits of the Hindu society have ruined the depressed classes of their vision and well being. Therefore to arouse the opinion of the people against the evils of the society he wrote a book named Maridai Mahatme in October 1924. He distributed the copies of the book free of cost among the Dalits. It proved to be very effective. After reading the contents of the book, the Dalit women and men who used to go to witness obscene Krishna Leela abandoned this practice.
Shri Hardas Laxmarirao Nagrare's next welfare step was to provide educational facilities to Dalit students. So he started the Mahar Samaj night schools at Bail Bazaar, Kamsari Bazaar and Naya Bazaar Kamathi. These schools marched towards the desired goal and in 1924 as many as 86 boys and 22 girls were enrolled in these schools. At the same time he opened one Saint Chokhamela library at Kamathi to provide reading material to the students.
Since he had association with Arya Samaj, Mahatma Shri Swami Brahmanand of Nagpur. So he had clear vision about fruitless worship of idols and wanted to spread this message among his depressed classes' people. Shri Hardas organized a meeting of Dalits at Ramtek near Nagpur In 1927 under the presidentship of Kisan Faguji Bansod. Shri Babu Hardas forcefully exhorted Dalits to stop worshipping at the steps of the temple at Ramtek and to stop bathing in the dirty Ambada tank. Since Depressed class people were not allowed to enter the temple, so these people worshiped at the steps from a distance. These people were allowed
only to bathe in the out flow of the tank water which used to be full of filth.
Meanwhile he wrote a play named Veer Balak (Brave Boy) The Veer Balak Act performance helped to bring a new awareness among the people. The play proved to be very effective in giving the desired message. He wrote and published Songs of the Market and Songs of the Hearth. His articles were also published in Weekly Janta, edited by Dr. Ambedkar. Babu Hardas organized a meeting at Paturda in District Akola under the chainmanship of Dr. Ambedkar. In this conference a resolution was passed in support of religious conversion in support of the public declaration of Dr. Ambedkar's (13th October 1935 at Yeola Distt Nasik) to leave Hindu religion as it was immune to reforms. The Depressed Class peoples under Hindu fold continued suffering from man made agony of irrational Laws. The Hindus shall never agree to grant Human Rights to the Depressed Classes people. Babu Hardas was a front runner in organizing these meeting which had blessing and participation of Dr. Ambedkar to spread his message to Dalit masses.
Shri Hardas was deadly against idol worship taking it as futile practice. However, he sent a group of Dalits under the leadership of Shri Shankar Mukunda Bele to participate in the Kalaram Temple Entry Satyagraha at Nasik. This Satyagraha started on 3rd March, 1930 under the leadership of Dada Sahib B.K. Gaikwad and was led by Dr.Ambedkar.
Shri Babu Hardas was one of the main organizers of the Conference of the Depressed Classes at Nagpur on 8th August, 1930. It was presided over by Dr. B.R. Ambedkar. The conference resolved to have separate electorate for the Depressed Classes. The conference formed the All India Depressed Classes Federation under the president ship of Rao Sahib Muniswamy Piliai (Madras). Babu Shri Hardas was elected as its Joint Secretary.

The second conference of the All India Depressed Classes was held at Kamathi on 7th May, 1932, under the president ship of Shri Muniswamy Pillai. Babu Hardasji was President of the reception committee. On 8th May, 1932 the national executive body of the All India Depressed Classes Federation was elected, which included Muniswamy Pillai (Madras) as President, M.B. Mullick (Bengal) as Vice-president, Shri L.N. Hardas as Secretary besides Shri Swami Achutanand (Ad-Dharma Hero of Lucknow) as its Joint Secretary. The Independent Labour Party (ILP) was launched by B.R. Ambedkar on 15th August, 1936 under his President ship and treasurer ship. Babu Hardas L.N was entrusted with the responsibilities of being the Secretary of the CP and Berar branch of ILP in 1936.
Babu Hardas L.N contested the assembly election in 1937 from Nagpur-Karnathi (R) constituency and got elected. He was nominated President of the CP and Berar branch of ILP in 1938.
In 1939, he fell sick of tuberculosis and his political career came to an abrupt end. Babu Shri Hardas Laxmarirao Nagrare shed his mortal body frames on 12th January, 1939 at the early age of 35. His services were very urgently needed when he shed his body frame .He shall be long remembered as a faithful solider of the Dalit empowerment movement in India under the able leadership of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar. The contributions of Babu Hardas for the Dalit empowerment were much more to his age span.