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Why Congress still uses word Harijan: Prakash Ambedkar

The VBA President said, 'Perhaps, the Congress has forgotten that the Union government issued statements to all state governments, in 1982, asking them not to use the term (Harijan) to refer to Dalits. In 2010, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment issued fresh guidelines'.
Last Updated : 17 June 2024, 13:23 IST

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Mumbai: In a scathing attack on the Congress, Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi leader Prakash Ambedkar has questioned as to why the grand old party continues to use the word Harijan.

Lawyer-politician Ambedkar, a two-time Lok Sabha MP and one term Rajya Sabha MP, is the grandson of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar, the chief architect of the Constitution.

“When Mahatma Gandhi started using the term Harijans for the untouchables, Babasaheb Ambedkar strongly protested against it, expressing that it was condescending and deceiving in nature, an attempt to side-step the real issue of caste-discrimination and untouchability,” said Ambedkar.

“Perhaps, the Congress has forgotten that the Union government issued statements to all state governments, in 1982, asking them not to use the term (Harijan) to refer to Dalits. In 2010, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment issued fresh guidelines,” he said.

“But, why has the Congress continued to use the term Harijan ?

"There can be only one explanation,…arrogance…The serpent “Congress” has shown Dalits its real fangs from time to time,” he said, adding, “It is up now to the Dalits who to believe— a Congress with cosmetic makeover with a janeudhari family puppeteer or an independent Dalit-Ambedkarite leadership which has not and never will dance to the tune of the janeudhari leadership, and will always work for the political rights of Dalits, Adivasis, Muslims and OBCs.”

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Published 17 June 2024, 13:23 IST

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