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Ambedkar Jayanti 2017: Remembering Dr. B.R Ambedkar, the Architect of Indian Constitution

Father of modern India, champion of human & civil rights, father of India's Constitution, polymath, genius, revolutionary and Buddhism revivalist

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Dr B.R Ambedkar in 1950, Wikimedia

April 14, 2017: To commemorate the birth anniversary of Dr. B.R Ambedkar, India celebrates Ambedkar Jayanti or Bhim Jayanti on April 14, every year. The “father of the constitution” is very well known for his contribution to the independent India.

He fought for India’s independence and post-Independence; he made sure that the interests of the common man in the nation are safeguarded via the largest constitution in the world.

Popularly known as Baba Saheb, was an Indian jurist, economist, politician and social reformer who inspired the Dalit Buddhist Movement and campaigned against social discrimination against Untouchables (Dalits), while also supporting the rights of women and labour.

 
In 1990, the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, was posthumously conferred upon Ambedkar. Ambedkar’s legacy includes numerous memorials and depictions in popular culture.

Ambedkar Jayanti or Bhim Jayanti is an annual festival observed on 14 April to commemorate the memory of B. R. Ambedkar. It marks Ambedkar’s birthday in 1891 and is a public holiday throughout India.

Ambedkar Jayanti Processions are carried out by his followers at Chaitya Bhoomi in Mumbai and Deeksha Bhoomi in Nagpur It is a customary for senior national figures, such as the President, Prime Minister and leaders of major political parties, to pay homage at the statue of Ambedkar at the Parliament of India in New Delhi.

It is celebrated throughout the world especially by Dalits who embraced Buddhism after his example. In India, large numbers of people visit local statues commemorating Ambedkar in procession with a lot of zeal and fervour.

Schools and Colleges across the nation organize activities like dance, painting, debate, dramatics, essay writing, as well as sports to celebrate Ambedkar Jayanti.

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Few Interesting facts- 

  • A Google Doodle was published for Ambedkar’s 124th birthday.
  • Dr. Ambedkar Jayanti is such a big event in India that Dr. Ambedkar topped on Google Search and Twitter Trends on 14 April 2015.
  • In 2017, on the occasion of Dr. Ambedkar Jayanti, Twitter launched Dr Ambedkar emoji as a tribute to the legend.
  • Dr. Ambedkar Jayanti is celebrated not only in India but also in abroad; significantly in United Kingdom, United States etc.
  • In order to celebrate this occasion, a big seminar is organized yearly by the Bhartiya Journalists Welfare Association, Lucknow.
  • Three days long festival (from 15th of April to 17th of April) is held at the Baba Mahashamshan Nath temple at Manikarnika ghat Varanasi where various cultural programs of dance and music are organized.
  • Students from junior high school and primary schools make a prabhat pheri in morning and secondary school students take part in the rally at this day.
  • At many places, free health check up camps are also organized in order to provide free of charge check up and medicines to the poor group people.

B.R Ambedkar has contributed immensely to this nation and his legacy is being embraced by the youth readily. The youth on the right path fulfilling the dreams of the architects of the nation is the best homage to these national heroes.

-prepared by Nikita Tayal of NewsGram Twitter @NikitaTayal6

Next Story

Does India’s Giant Step in the Direction of Green Energy Signal an End to Coal?

Coal consumption forecasts have already been downgraded significantly from 2013 projections, and major shifts in energy policy like Modi’s are likely to add significant weight to the idea that India might well become a much bigger player in renewable energy production in the next 20 to 30 years

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FILE - Smoke billows from chimneys of the cooling towers of a coal-fired power plant in Dadong, Shanxi province, China. VOA

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government announced its target to increase India’s renewable energy capacity to an equivalent of 40% of the nation’s total green energy output, it raised eyebrows. Could this mean an end to India’s coking coal industry?

Is there investment for green energy?

For any alternative to coal to be a serious consideration, there must be investment sources. Already India’s renewable target has attracted investors like Japan’s SoftBank, which agreed to a deal to sell power generated from a Northern Indian solar bank at 2.4 rupees per unit – below that of coal power, which currently costs over 3 rupees per unit.

Contrary to the enormous investment in the production of solar panels being manufactured by China, which has made them cheap enough to encourage this Indian growth in solar renewable energy, there has been relatively little investment in Indian coal.

Asia-Pacific
Workers operate machines at a coal mine at Palaran district in Samarinda, Indonesia (VOA)

For instance, state-run NTPC has cancelled several large coal mining projects, including a huge plant in Andhra Pradesh. Meanwhile, the private sector has continued investing in renewables. Adani Power has over $600 million invested in solar panels in the southern state of Tamil Nadu.

That Modi has made an investment of $42 billion in the renewable energy sector over the past four years and his renewables plan is likely to generate a further $80 billion in the green energy sector in the next four years is good news for the Rupee. External investment in India is likely a sign of increased currency transaction in forex trading signalling the Rupee gaining strength against other pairs. Like the Indian economy, millions of dollars are traded on currencies every day, and increased interest in the Rupee helps cement India’s economic and investment potential.

How reliant is India on coal power?

Not so long ago the Indian government had a target to connect 40 million households to the national grid by the end of 2018. It even tasked CIL, the state coal monopoly, to produce over a billion tonnes of coal per year by 2020, an increase of almost 100% from 2016. It’s an ambitious goal, notwithstanding the environmental impacts of mining for such an unprecedented amount of coal. This is the same coal that already generates 70% of India’s primary commercial energy requirement; compare that figure to the UK’s 11%, Germany’s 38%, and China’s 68%, while France has practically shut all of its coal power stations. This means that India’s shift from coal could have important implications for the global climate, and any investors looking towards coal would be making a very brave and risky decision.

Coal
Environmentally, coal isn’t a sustainable source of power, certainly not in current quotas.

The increasing problem with relying on coal

Environmentally, coal isn’t a sustainable source of power, certainly not in current quotas. Clean-up costs could make coal an out-of-date power source sooner rather than later. A report by Oxford University estimated that investors in coal power may lose upwards of half a trillion dollars because assets cannot be profitably run or retired early due to global temperature rises and agreed carbon emission reductions.

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Coal consumption forecasts have already been downgraded significantly from 2013 projections, and major shifts in energy policy like Modi’s are likely to add significant weight to the idea that India might well become a much bigger player in renewable energy production in the next 20 to 30 years – although it’s difficult not to see coal remaining an important power source considering India’s significantly large coal reserves still available in Eastern India.