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Ayodhya Rama’s and Bharat Ratna Ramji’s

Dt:  12/4/19

 

Ayodhya Rama’s and Bharat Ratna Ramji’s

Jayanti on 14.04.2019

 

Dr T H Chowdary*

 

 

It is great that  Sri Rama Navami and  Jayanti of  Bhim Rao Ramji Ambedkar are falling on the  same day on Sunday the 14th April  (2019).  It is apt to recall the greatness of each and  the similarity between the   two as regards their deeds and the message to the people of India.

 

2. Sri Rama  is held to be the personification of dharma    Ramo vigrahavan dharmaha” - Dharma is that power which permeates the universe and is responsible  for the  existence of the stars and  galaxies, planets,  life on the planets and all material and consciousness in the universe.  In Bharat  the name  Rama is invoked whenever a person  is in trouble or there is a need of help and or exclaims when something strange  happens   in the hope that Rama, that is dharma, will come to his /her rescue. While there are several exemplary instances of Rama’s conduct which can inform, inspire and guide us a few may be recalled :

 

·         Rama was to be crowned, as the  successor prince  to Dasaradha, his father in a few hours. He comes to know through his step  -mother, Kaikeyi that   according  to  a promise given to her  by the father Dasaratha, Bharata was to be crowned, the Yuva raja and that  Rama should go on exile to the forest for 14 years. No hesitation, no doubt, no question, Rama instantly agrees and prepares to go into exile for 14 years  leaving the princedom to his step brother  Bharata. What a renunciation !  What an  obedience to the father’s word! What a respect for the  father!  What a sacrifice and all with great  pleasantness!

 

·         That Rama could be nice and obliging even to the poorest and destitute comes out in the incident of Sabari, the tribal woman waiting to see him with  fruits which she has  tasted to ascertain that they are  sweet, to be offered to Rama. Rama accepts them with  great pleasure and  Sabari’s wish is fulfilled. What regard and affection that the  tribal woman had for Rama and in what manner the great  Rama reciprocated !

·         Sita was abducted and is in the Ashoka Vana of  Lanka guarded by the demoness, Trijata While the search for Sita was going on and Sugreeva asks Rama what he would do if Ravana voluntarily surrenders Sita to Rama, Rama says “ I will then offer him the kingdom of Ayodhya”. Rama does not bear any personal  animosity and hatred for Ravana . His ire is directed against the ignoble act of abduction . If a   sinner or wrong doer repents and makes amends, one should  forgive his sin. That is what comes out in this incident.

·         Rama was to cross the sea to Lanka . The sea was turbulent and unyielding, to facilitate the   construction of a bridge . For once, Rama was anger personified.  He takes his  bow and arrow and threatens the ocean that if it does not  give  way, he would  dry  up the ocean; the ocean  yields and becomes quiet and the bridge is constructed. A usually calm and kind  Rama  could become a  terror to an unyielding adversary.

·         A small creature,  a squirrel also wants to help Rama’s cause to cross the sea. While the big bridge is  being built by the Vanara (monkey) army, the crevices are filled up with  sand by a  squirrel  which rolls in wet sand and takes the   sand that stick to its  body and spreads it into the crevices to stop the leaks. Rama notices; picks up the squirrel and fondly strokes its back with  three fingers; the squirrel gets three stripes. It is remarkable that the squirrels  only in India  have these three stripes.  When I was in Canada  sitting in a garden  of my friend, I saw  the squirrels cracking the acorns . I  was surprised to find that those squirrels do not have the stripes on their backs that the Indian squirrels have.  The impression of Rama’s love for the  smallest of life  is indeed a tribute to his characteristic regard and love, bhootadaya for all  creatures.

·         When the battle between Rama and Ravana was  going on for days, one day Rama finds Ravana tired- Rama then tells Ravana, “ you are  tired. Please go home take   rest; come for the battle  tomorrow” .  The   battle   is   suspended for the  day . What magnanimity!   The enmity  is not for the person of Ravana  but for the  evil deed that he did. 

 

3. Rama is a  legend. He is held to be a flaw -less character worthy of emulation and worship by everyone, the lowly and the highest.  In times of stress and distress, in times of  pleasure and prosperity, Rama is invoked. Rama’s story is known to every Bharatiya . It is transmitted from generation to generation by the  elders to the young; by the  peripatetic  minstrels singing Rama’s katha  in the   streets and in the homes. Many a village, all over India claim that  during  his  14 years sojourn in the land, he stayed in their village. In East Godavari there is  a village Sakhineti Palli  nearly on the mouth of the  Godavari, where it opens into the  sea. The villagers say that while journeying in the area, Rama told Sita that it was about to  become night and so he said , “Sakhi ! Neti Palli “ that is;  dear Sita. This is the  village  for our rest for tonight”. Upstream of the Godavari there is  a  place Parnasala, where people believe that Rama, Sita and Laksmana stayed for days.  Near about is a rock where people believe that the red stripes that are there on the rock are due to the  colour impressed upon the  rock from the  sarees of  Sita put to dry.   Like this,  people all over  the  country have  some story or the other  linking  her  village, their area with Rama and Sita. 

 

4. Many a poet, in almost every language  in India thought  that  their life  would be in vain if  they did not write Rama Kath and this  happened century  after century. Each poet wove into his story, what  message he should  at that time give to his people . That is why    there are  myriad  variations of Rama katha, in different  languages composed at different times. Kavi Samrat, Viswanatha  Satyanarayana   asked the  question and  answered it himself.  “Why once  again at this  time I should write Ramayana”. His answer was that , “people are eating the same food again and again but all the while relishing the same ; men and women are living as wife and husband for years together  with the same commitment and   affection;  I write my Ramayana for my own pleasure ( Tulasidas also said, he was writing Ramakatha  for swanta sukhaya; for his own pleasure). Viswanatha concludes that in any epic a great poet writes, the  story is  10% and  90% is the message that the poet  conveys to the people;  he weaves  the epic with the message as coming from the characters. He convey his  message that is appropriate  to the times and the place.    The great Telugu devotee and poet Kancherla Gopanna known as Ramadas sang ”antha ramamayam eejagamantha rama mayam …. Antharangamuna aathmaramudu ananta rupamuna  vinthalu salumpa…” meaning :  this entire universe is permeated with Rama, that is dharma . The  many splendors that are  and  arise in the world  are created by Rama  in our  hearts. There is hardly any village in the country where  there is no temple dedicated to  Rama. Along with him the greatest devotee and the  mightiest and most valourous Hanuman   is also installed .

 

5. Coming to  Dr Bhim Rao Ramji Ambedkar, it is significant and noteworthy that his father,  a Mahar (equivalent to  Madiga in Telugu  lands) an untouchable in his time named his son after Rama. That shows how Rama, the personification of dharma was held as  an ideal  purusha  by the  high and low in equal measure. Rama  is beyond caste and time and place because he is dharma. Dr Ramji Ambedkar is now becoming a Rama in  nobility for invoking the bharatiyata  to discard all pollutions and ignoble ideas and practices that have  infected the Bharatiya  sanatan dharma  over centuries.  Dr Ramji Ambedkar  suffered the  pangs of  poverty, being one of the   dozen children of his father. In school he was  subjected to great  humiliation, he was kept away from the  rest of  the class as an untouchable. The word Ram in his  name  must have been silently awakening  his intellect  ( dhiyo yonah  prachodayath  ) . That is inspite of  inhuman discriminations and humiliations  Ambedkar was inflicted, intelligence  that the word Rama was instilling in him, helped him to overcome all humiliation and  rise to the highest  achievement and   accomplishment and  ever increasing respect from ever more bharatiyas as  time passes.

 

6. In intellect and scholarship  and  devotion   to the human person,  to uphold  its  dignity, Dr Ramji Ambedkar worked indefatigably and inimitably throughout his life. He was the voice   of the  depressed,  the deprived  and the discriminated . He stood upto  Gandhi; he excelled  Jawaharlal.  When he pleaded and got separate  electorate for the depressed (who are called  SC in our Constitution  and social parlance) Gandhiji  undertook  a fast unto death, holding  that  separate  electorate  for dalits, would separate them  from the  Hindu community and they would be   called minorities like Muslims and Christians,  and that would be destructive of   Hindu society .  He was about to die  Dr  Ramji Ambedkar, the great Bharatiya   who like Rama did not  detest the person but  only  his sins and wrong  doings  did not want  Gandhiji to die   because of his  (that is  Dr Ramji  Ambedkar’s) intransigence . He compromised  and agreed for a   common electorate but  assured  representation  in the Legislative bodies  through   reservation.  Gandhiji returned this regard to  Ambedkar when he insisted and prevailed upon the reluctant Jawaharlal  Nehru  to include him (Dr Ambedkar) in the first cabinet that was formed  after independence . He was  inducted into the Constituent  Assembly and even while great constitutional experts like K M Munshi, Alladi Krishnaswamy Iyer   and others  were there, Dr Ramji Ambedkar was made the Chairman of the   Constitution Drafting Committee.  Dr. Ramji Ambedkar  built into this   Constitution  provisions  that can  ensure   Rama Rajya- justice and dignity for every person in Bharat,  dignity of    human person, equality  before  law, abolition of the  abominable practice of untouchability and most uniquely,  that the state  must  provide  free and compulsory education   for all children   between the   age 6-14 holding   that  only  through education can people  get out of  poverty   and inequality.  No other constitution in the world has such   a provision.

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7. Dr Ramji Ambedkar and K M Munshi and Sardar Patel worked together  to build a strong central, state, Union of India  - not a federation  of independent  states  that have  given up their sovereignty and some of their  powers, to join the Federation.  Fully  aware of  what  happened in  history to India, namely,  several  politically independent  states,  though  culturally   one  nation   but not    politically united,  India having been subjugated by waves of plundering  invaders who ultimately  reduced India  to be  ruled  by foreigners from Afghanistan, Iran and such intolerant, cruel hordes and  later by the  exploitative and  plundering imperial  power,  Great  Britain. Dr. Ramji Ambedkar and Sardar Patel and K.M.Munshi working as a team  saw to it that the will of the  Union Government would  prevail over that of  the states. Although  the Constitution allocates   certain powers exclusively to the states, some to the Union and some for concurrent  jurisdiction, the  Constitution ensures that where   the states’  laws  in the  concurrent list  differ from that of the Union, the law of the  Union will prevail, and not that of the state. Many regional parties and their leaders  are  talking of  “federalism”; they are ignorant or are willfully distorting the Constitution. India is a Union of States.  They never had  sovereignty nor  independent  existence. They were provinces  earlier – the provinces of the British ruled Indian Dominion and not states.  Dr Ramji Ambedkar made it clear that India is not a federation and that India is a union of states with a strong central government, a historic necessity to transform a cultural nation  into  a nation state.

 

8. Jawaharlal  Nehru was always  ill -disposed to Dr Ramji Ambedkar.  Disregarding the   great scholarship and abilities  of Dr  Ramji Ambedkar, he was allotted  only the portfolio of law while his talents  would do well for education, industry, agriculture and finance as  he held doctorates and wrote these on each one of these  subjects. Dr. Amebkdar  was against Nehru’s inclusion of Article - 370 in the  Constitution. He was for quick  enactment of a full Hindu Code Bill, preparatory to  enactment of a Common Civil Code as   enshrined  in the directive articles of the Constitution. Dear Ambedkar said that Nehru was obsessed with Kashmir  and cared not for the plight of  Hindus in Paksitan. So Dr Ramji Ambedkar resigned from the   Cabinet in Oct 1956. Nehru did not have the decency of allowing Dr Ramji Ambedkar to make a statement in the Parliament. So Dr Ramji Ambedkar had to make it at a  press conference. He criticized  Nehru’s obsession with  Kashmir holding  that the Muslim part of  J&K, that is Kashmir Valley in India should not be held and pampered at the great expense  to the country and in negligence of the plight of  Hindus in Pakistan. In 1951  he founded a political party Schedule Castes Federation of India. Its manifesto is really  socialist , ensuring justice to every  caste of India and most importantly, offering a real and permanent solution for  agriculture in India by proposing  restructuring of agricultural holdings. Jawaharlal Nehru and  communists joined  to defeat him in the 1952 general elections when   he stood from Bombay. He tried  to get into Lok Sabha in a bye election thereafter. Jawaharlal  Nehru  and his Congress  exerted to defeat him again.   He could  get into  Rajya Sabha from West Bengal. Dr Ramji Ambedkar noted the anti-Indian, un-Indian   activities of the Indian communists. He was opposed to the communist party of India. Iin fact , he founded the  Independent  Labor Party in the  Bombay province to wean away the working class from the  communist trade  unions.

 

9. Dr Ramji Ambedkar devoted his life for  ridding Hinduism of its inhuman practice of untouchability  and imposition of  perpetual poverty upon the  Dalits.  When he found that some great persons like, the saintly Ramanuja, Narayana Guru and Gandhi and  Dayananda  Saraswati and Jyothiba Phule etc.,  could not bring the reforms they sought   to prevail  in Hinduism, in desperation he decided to  change his religion.  He refused the offer of millions of  rupees by the Nizam if he would convert to Islam scores of Christian missionaries pleaded with him to convert to Christianity.  He rebuffed them all.  Money would not buy him. His last act was the collection of  more than a million dalits  in Nagpur in Oct 1956 and exhorting them thus:. “ My lifelong attempts  to reform Hinduism, to rid it of  excrescences   has not borne any fruit. Therefore we shall give up Hinduism. However, we should  not convert to any  religion which is not of India’s origin ;Islam  is exclusivist;  it is not of our country; the  brotherhood in Islam is confined to the believers. Therefore we should not  accept  Islam. Some of our  people have  embraced Christianity. It too    is not of India’s origin . It is also exclusivist . It believes that only  those who are baptized  will go to heaven  and the rest  will all be in hell forever.  Our people who converted to Christianity are still  treated inhumanly,  unequally by the  caste Hindus who converted to Christianity and white Christians. Islam and Christianity had the  slave system for long. The  Africans who  were    taken to  America were sold as slaves  and converted to  Christianity.  They  are  still untouchables and are  dalits  there. Therefore we should not  convert to  Christianity.   Many  dharmic  sects  arose in our country out of the  same sanatan dharma . We have Buddhism,  Jainism and Sikhism  and  Arya  Samaj all of Indian origin  and out of them to me  Buddhism appears to be  the best. Therefore we should  embrace Buddhism  and surely not Islam or Christianity”.   Along with him, lakhs of  dalits embraced Buddhism in 1956 in Nagpur. The Sankaracharya of Kanchi   not only thanked  Dr Ramji Ambedkar;  he praised him for saving Bharat and Hinduism by choosing Buddhism, a Bharatiya dharma  and not the exclusivist Islam or Christianity.

 

10. Today those  who form societies  and associations and parties invoking Dr Ramji Ambedkar’s name forget and deliberately exclude  Ramji in his  name and ignore  what he told  dalits  namely, not to  convert to Islam or Christianity, but to be  truly independent, to embrace   only the Buddhist dharma of Bharatiya  origin.

 

11. Dr Ramji Ambedkar boldly and in a great scholarly  way  wrote  very critically  about  Islam in his seminal work, “Pakistan or India Divided”. It shows  that Muslims are indeed a separate nation who can never ever, live peacefully in a state where they are  not rulers . He concluded that partition is inevitable and good for Hindus. He most  explicitly proposed  and carefully argued for exchange of  minority populations. In any case, Islamist   Pakistan will expel by fair and foul  means, all non-Muslims .  Muslims   in India  must all be   sent out to Pakistan ; there should be a peaceful exchange of  all minorities once for all so that India will be Hindustan  and Pakitan will be lslamistan. He cited the  historic  precedent of exchange of Muslim and  Christen minorities  after the   dismemberment  of Ottoman Turkish Muslim Empire   after the First   World War , 1919.

 

12. It is a  grievous and unpardonable  insult to the memory of the  great Bhararta  Ratna Bhim Rao Ramji Ambedker that a  scion of his has floated a  party and forged an alliance with a congenitally anti-India, anti-Hindu  Islamist Muslim party, disregarding Dr. Ambedkar’s findings  that the Muslim invader settler rulers of India  had the objective of  destroying Hinduism and that Islam is an exclusivist religion  and the Muslims in India should all be exchanged with  Pakistan’s Hindus,  to avoid  recurring communal riots, divisiveness  and emergence of conditions for repeated  division of India’s  to create Muslim majority areas (like Mewat in Haryana and Malappuramn in Kerala). This scion is deliberately  disregarding the  fate of Bengal’s  territory dalit leader, Sri Jogindranath Mondal who allied his party with the Muslim League, was made a (nominal) Minister of  Law in Pakistan and so disgraced that he had to flee Pakistan, settle down in India and die  an inglorious,  unsung, unremembered death.

 

13. Rama as dharma is the life breath of  Bharat and Bharatiyas. Dr Bhim Rao Ramji Ambedkar is the  modern Rama .  He is being described as leader   of only Dalits by some ill-intentioned  dalits  in alliance with India’s thodo-fodo gangs belonging to non-indigenous  religions and ideologies.  That there are more Dr Bhim Rao Ramji Ambedkar’s statues than Mahatma Gandhi’s shows the grandeur of  Dr. Aambedkar  as a leader,  path-setter of all Bharatiyas and  not merely a part of them, enticed as they are by congenital anti-Indians; resident non-Indians (RNIs) . The coincidence  of  Jayanti of  Ayodhya Rama and  Bharat Ratna, Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar falling on the   same day, this year must spur every Indian to contemplate the greatness and contributions of  Dr Bhim Rao Ramji Ambedkar to be as lasting as that of Ayodhya Rama .  Dr Ambedkar truly  and fully  imbibed  the valour of Bhima ( Pandava) and the  nobility of the  poorna purusha Ayodhya Rama. (3,278 words)

 

(You can see this article and many more by Dr T H Chowdary at his website www.drthchowdary.net)

 

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