If Gandhi was Bapu, the “father” of a society in which he tried to inject equality while maintaining the “Hindu” framework, Ambedkar was Baba to his people and the great liberator from that framework.’ Born in 1891 into an ‘untouchable’ family, Dr Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar was witness to all the decisive phases of India's freedom movement. While the well-known elite nationalists like Gandhi and Nehru led the struggle for political freedom from British colonial rule, Ambedkar fought a correlated but different struggle, one for the liberation of the most oppressed sections of Indian society. Ambedkar's nationalism focussed on the building of a nation, on the creation of social equality and cultural integration in a society held enslaved for centuries by the unique tyrannies of caste and varna ideologies. His would be an enlightened India based on the values of liberty, equality and fraternity. In this concise biography, Gail Omvedt, a long-time researcher of Dalit politics and culture, presents with empathy Ambedkar's struggle to become educated, overcome the stigma of untouchability and pursue his higher studies abroad. She portrays how he gradually rose to become a lawyer of international repute, a founder of a new order of Buddhism and a framer of India's Constitution. Ambedkar: Towards an Enlightened India puts the man and his times in context and explains to a new generation of readers how he became a national and Dalit leader and an icon of the dispossessed.
About the Author
Dr. Gail Omvedt is an American born Indian scholar, sociologist and human rights activist. Omvedt has been involved in Dalit and anti-caste movements, environmental, farmers' and women's movements.