Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar or the architect of the Indian constitution, was born on April 14th, 1891. He was lovingly addressed as Babasaheb by his followers, who remain indebted to his efforts. Babasaheb was from the Mahar caste, one of the few castes treated as untouchables in Indian society. He converted to Buddhism on 14th October 1956 in Nagpur along with his 5 lakh supporters.
His childhood days were harrowing as he had to witness severe discrimination at the hands of the upper caste. All these unpleasant experiences are mentioned in his autobiography ‘Waiting for A Visa.’ He was appointed as the chairman of the Constitution Drafting Committee on August 29, 1947, to draft the constitution of Independent India.
Once India attained Independence, he took up the position of Law minister of India. His writing the Constitution breaks all the taboos that would restrict the Shudras from taking up high-level jobs. Plus, his appointment changed the thought process of people and urged the lower castes to stand up for their rights. It also reduced the monopoly of the higher castes who thought they were superior in jobs of different departments
Quite a few of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar’s quotes caused controversy as they rebuked Hinduism and Islam. However, we must understand that Ambedkar was secular in nature and an advocate of nurturing equality for all. He was firmly against certain Hindu practices like a caste system. Ambedkar’s sayings, therefore, talk about creating an India where religion is for correct guidance and not some rules that a few people have set.
We cannot forget Dr. BR Ambedkar’s contribution in setting up this modern-day India. Here we present 45 of his famous quotes that reflect his legacy and the love that he held for India.
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45 Most Powerful BR Ambedkar Quotes
1. Cultivation of the mind should be the ultimate aim of human existence.
2. Democracy is not merely a form of Government. It is primarily a mode of associated living, of conjoint communicated experience. It is essentially an attitude of respect and reverence towards fellow man.
3. I have always held that Knowledge is Power in every field of life. The Scheduled Castes will not attain their goal of freedom and liberty until they drink deep of all knowledge.
4. The constitution is not a mere lawyer’s document, it is a vehicle of life and its spirit is always the spirit of the age.
5. For a successful revolution, it is not enough that there is discontent. What is required is a profound and thorough conviction of the justice, necessity and importance of political and social rights.
6. A great man is different from an eminent one in that he is ready to be the servant of society.
7. Humans are mortal. So are ideas. An idea needs to propagate as much as a plant needs watering. Otherwise, both will wither and die.
8. Equality may be fiction but nonetheless one must accept it as a governing principle.
9. Unlike a drop of water which loses its identity when it joins the ocean, man does not lose his being in the society in which he lives. Man’s life is independent. He is born not for the development of the society alone, but for the development of his self.
10. I measure the progress of a community by the degree of progress which women have achieved.
11. Cultivation of mind should be the ultimate aim of human existence.
12. If you ask me, my ideal would be the society based on liberty, equality and fraternity. An ideal society should be mobile and full of channels of conveying a change taking place in one part to other parts.
13. The outcast is a by-product of the caste system. There will be outcasts as long as there are castes. Nothing can emancipate the outcast except the destruction of the caste system.
14. Law and order are the medicine of the politic body and when the politic body gets sick, medicine must be administered.
15. Every man must have a philosophy of life, for everyone must have a standard by which to measure his conduct. And philosophy is nothing but a standard by which to measure.
16. A great man is different from an eminent one in that he is ready to be the servant of the society.
17. Law and order are the medicine of the body politic and when the body politic gets sick, medicine must be administered.
18. Men are mortal. So are ideas. An idea needs propagation as much as a plant needs watering. Otherwise both will wither and die.
19. Caste is not a physical object like a wall of bricks or a line of barbed wire which prevents the Hindus from co-mingling and which has, therefore, to be pulled down.
20. Caste is a notion; it is a state of the mind.
21. Indians today are governed by two different ideologies. Their political ideal set in the preamble of the Constitution affirms a life of liberty, equality and fraternity. Their social ideal embodied in their religion denies them.
22. Religion and slavery are incompatible.
23. So long as you do not achieve social liberty, whatever freedom is provided by the law is of no avail to you.
24. Equality may be a fiction but nonetheless one must accept it as a governing principle.
25. They cannot make history who forget history.
26. Be Educated, Be Organised and Be Agitated.
27. Life should be great rather than long.
28. If I find the constitution being misused, I shall be the first to burn it.
29. The relationship between husband and wife should be one of closest friends.
30. A great man is different from an eminent one in that he is ready to be the servant of the society.
31. Political tyranny is nothing compared to the social tyranny and a reformer who defies society is a more courageous man than a politician who defies Government.
32. However good a Constitution may be, if those who are implementing it are not good, it will prove to be bad. However bad a Constitution may be, if those implementing it are good, it will prove to be good.
33. Caste is not just a division of labour, it is a division of labourers.
34. Indeed, the Muslims have all the social evils of the Hindus and something more. That something more is the compulsory system of purdah for Muslim women. These burka women walking in the streets is one of the most hideous sights one can witness in India.
35. The brotherhood of Islam is not the universal brotherhood of man. It is the brotherhood of Muslims for Muslims only. There is a fraternity, but its benefit is confined to those within that corporation. For those who are outside the corporation, there is nothing but contempt and enmity.
36. Islam can never allow a true Muslim to adopt India as his motherland and regard a Hindu as his kith and kin. That is probably the reason why Maulana Mahomed Ali, a great Indian but a true Muslim, preferred to be buried in Jerusalem rather than in India.
37. My quarrel with Hindus and Hinduism is not over the imperfections of their social conduct. It is much more fundamental. It is over their ideals.
38. I do not want any blind followers. Those who come into the Buddhist religion should come with an understanding; they should consciously accept that religion.
39. A bitter thing cannot be made sweet. The taste of anything can be changed. But poison cannot be changed into nectar.
40. Indifferentism is the worst kind of disease that can affect people.
41. Every man who repeats the dogma of Mill that one country is no fit to rule another country must admit that one class is not fit to rule another class.
42. The basic idea underlying religion is to create an atmosphere for the spiritual development of the individual.
43. One cannot have any respect or regard for men who take the position of the reformer and then refuse to see the logical consequences of that position, let alone following them out in action.
44. Every man must have a philosophy of life, for everyone must have a standard by which to measure his conduct. And philosophy is nothing but a standard by which to measure.
45. A just society is that society in which ascending sense of reverence and descending sense of contempt is dissolved into the creation of a compassionate society.