- DR. B.R AMBEDKAR
- RAISINA DIALOGUE
- JALLIANWALA BAGH MASSACRE
DR. B.R AMBEDKAR
Focus: GS I- Personalities in news
Why in news?
The President of India has greeted fellow-citizens on the eve of the birth anniversary of Dr. Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar
About B R Ambedkar
- He was born into a caste that was considered untouchable, he faced many injustices and discrimination in society.
- He was born in Mhow in the Central Provinces (modern-day Madhya Pradesh) to a Marathi family with roots in Ambadawe town of Ratnagiri, Maharashtra.
- He Popularly known as Baba Saheb Ji.
- He was the Chairman of the Drafting Committee of the Constituent Assembly and is called the ‘Father of the Indian Constitution’.
- He was a jurist and an economist.
- He was a brilliant student and had doctoral degrees in economics from Columbia University and the London School of Economics.
- The Ambedkar Ji was against the caste-based discriminations in society and advocated the Dalits to organize and demand their rights.
- He promoted the education of Dalits and made representations to the government in various capacities in this regard.
- He was part of the Bombay Presidency Committee that worked with the Simon Commission in 1925.
- He established the Bahishkrit Hitakarini Sabha to promote education and socio-economic improvements among the Dalits.
- He started magazines like Mooknayak, Equality Janta and Bahishkrit Bharat.
- In 1927, he launched active agitation against untouchability.
- He organised and agitated for the right of Dalits to enter temples and to draw water from public water resources.
- He condemned Hindu scriptures that he thought propagated caste discrimination.
- He advocated separate electorates for the ‘Depressed Classes’, the term with which Dalits were called at that time.
- He was in disagreement with Mahatma Gandhi at that time since Gandhi was against any sort of reservation in the electorates.
- When the British government announced the ‘Communal Award’ in 1932, Gandhi went on a fast in Yerwada Jail.
- An agreement was signed between Gandhi and Ambedkar in the jail whereby it was agreed to give reserved seats to the depressed classes within the general electorate, this was called the Poona Pact
- The Ambedkar Ji founded the Independent Labour Party (later transformed into the Scheduled Castes Federation) in 1936 and contested in 1937 from Bombay to the Central Legislative Assembly.
- He also contested from Bombay (north-central) after independence in the country’s first general elections. but he lost both times.
- He also worked as Minister of Labour in the Viceroy’s Executive Council. After independence, Ambedkar became the first Law Minister in 1947 under the Congress-led government. Later he resigned due to differences with Jawaharlal Nehru on the Hindu Code Bill.
- He was appointed to the Rajya Sabha in 1952 and remained a member till his death.
- He advocated a free economy with a stable Rupee.
- He also mooted birth control for economic development.
- He also emphasized equal rights for women.
- A few months before he died, he converted to Buddhism in a public ceremony in Nagpur and with him lakhs of Dalits converted to Buddhism.
- His death anniversary is observed as Mahaparinirvan Din.
He authored several books and essays, some of them are as follows;-
- The Annihilation of Caste, Pakistan or the Partition of India,
- The Buddha and his Dhamma,
- The Evolution of Provincial Finance in British India,
- Administration and Finance of the East India Company, etc.
GS II- India and Neighbourhood-Relations
Why in news?
Prime Minister addresses the inaugural session of Raisina Dialogue 2021.
- The 6th Edition of the prestigious Raisina Dialogue, jointly organised by the Ministry of External Affairs and the Observer Research Foundation,will be held virtually from 13-16 April, 2021.
- Theme: “#ViralWorld: Outbreaks, Outliers and Out of Control”.
About Raisina Dialogue:
- It is an annual Geo-political event. It is named after Raisina Hill where the seat of Government of India is located. It is a conference on geoeconomics and Geopolitics.
- It was structured on the lines of Shangri-La-Dialogue.
- It was held for the first time in 2016.
Objectives of Raisina Dialogue
- To explore future opportunities for Asian integration.
- To explore advancement in integration of Asia with the world
- It also asserts the crucial role played by India in the Indian Ocean Region.
- It also focuses on how India can build a stable, regional and world order.
- It addresses the most challenging issued faced by the global community.
- Raisina Hill is an area in New Delhi that houses the most important buildings of India namely Rashtrapati Bhavan and the secretariat building that houses Prime Minister Office and several other ministers. The Raisina Hill is surrounded by other important buildings including Rajpath, Parliament of India and India Gate.
- Earlier, the Viceroy’s House was constructed acquiring land from three hundred families in the local villages. This was done under the 1894 Land Acquisition Act. After independence, it was turned into the permanent residence of President of India.
JALLIANWALA BAGH MASSACRE
Focus: GS II- Modern History
Why in news?
PM pays tribute to martyrs of Jallianwala Bagh massacre.
About Jallianwala Bagh massacre:
April 13, 1919, marked a turning point in the Indian freedom struggle. It was Baisakhi that day, a harvest festival popular in Punjab and parts of north India. Local residents in Amritsar decided to hold a meeting that day to discuss and protest against the confinement of Satya Pal and Saifuddin Kitchlew, two leaders fighting for Independence, and implementation of the Rowlatt Act, which armed the British government with powers to detain any person without trial.
The crowd had a mix of men, women and children. They all gathered in a park called the Jallianwala Bagh, walled on all sides but for a few small gates, against the orders of the British. The protest was a peaceful one, and the gathering included pilgrims visiting the Golden Temple who were merely passing through the park, and some who had not come to protest.
While the meeting was on, Brigadier-General Reginald Edward Harry Dyer, who had crept up to the scene wanting to teach the public assembled a lesson, ordered 90 soldiers he had brought with him to the venue to open fire on the crowd. Many tried in vain to scale the walls to escape. Many jumped into the well located inside the park.
- Considered the ‘The Butcher of Amritsar’ in the aftermath of the massacre, General Dyer was removed from command and exiled to Britain.
- Rabindranath Tagore and Mahatma Gandhi, as a sign of condemnation, renounced their British Knighthood and Kaiser-i-Hind medal respectively.
- In 1922, the infamous Rowlett Act was repealed by the British.
Rowlatt Act, 1919
- The act was officially known as the Anarchical and Revolutionary Crimes Act, 1919 and was passed in March 1919 by the Imperial Legislative Council.
- The act was passed as per recommendations of the Rowlatt Committee chaired by a judge, Sir Sidney Rowlatt.
- This act authorized the government to imprison for a maximum period of two years, without trial, any person suspected of terrorism.
- The act provided s speedy trial of the offenses by a special cell that consisted of 3 High Court Judges. There was no court of appeal above that panel.
- This panel could also accept the evidences which were not even acceptable in the Indian Evidences Act.
- It also placed severe restrictions on the freedom of the press.
- The act was widely condemned by Indian leaders and the public. The bills came to be known as ‘black bills’.