After millennia of slavery to foreign rulers, by the time India attained freedom in 1947, it had already missed epoch-making events such as Renaissance and Industrial Revolution, which had swept the West. In this backdrop, our freedom fighters had the onerous task to steer a newly-formed nation out of labyrinth of poverty, illiteracy, feudalism and dogma into the new world, which was taking shape around the world.
On January 26, 1950, we the people of India declared ourselves a sovereign republic by giving ourselves a Constitution, which guarantees liberty, freedom, fraternity, fundamental rights, secularism, institutions for checks and balances, and above all equality to all of us.
What it meant was even those segments of society who were traditionally and historically marginalised due to skewed social structures of might is right till then, would be ensured equal opportunity by the State. Although anomalies in social strata still remain even to this day, a large section of the historically disenfranchised have been able to lift themselves out of the rut their forefathers bore for generations. The credit for amelioration of their plight goes entirely to the brilliant Constitution drafted by Babasaheb Ambedkar.
Today, those same Constitutional tenets drafted by Babasaheb are under stress and need reaffirmation since a mood of majoritarianism and its resultant hegemony have become the new normal in the past few years. A beacon of light still shines bright in this morass when in 2013 and 2015, Delhiites elected a set of honest novices as their representatives.
The Aam Aadmi Party’s inception too was precluded by a mass movement to bring back constitutional propriety, transparency in public life, and codified checks on those powerful to eradicate corruption in high offices. True to its inception, the AAP government under Arvind Kejriwal’s sincere leadership has diligently stuck to its solemn covenants given to the people by serving them in the most professional yet humane way respecting Babasaheb’s Constitution in letter and spirit, of ensuring public welfare reaching all, especially those at the bottom of the heap, whose voices mostly go unheard in the din.
Be it healthcare, education, water, sanitation, social welfare or a myriad of other deliverables, the AAP government has successfully provided succour to nearly 20 million residents of Delhi. Naturally, the biggest beneficiaries of such welfare schemes have been the hitherto marginalised, who are now becoming equal partners in nation building with an improved quality of life.
It is indeed an apt homage to Babasaheb and the Indian Constitution when initiatives that AAP govt has pioneered receive critical acclaim from both ends of the spectrum - be it the direct beneficiaries as well as critical acclaim from world-renowned media and personalities. On this day of BR Ambedkar’s ‘Parinirvan Diwas’, when glowing tributes flow to this great son of India from all quarters, the AAP govt feels humbled yet privileged that its policy eulogizes Babasaheb and Constitution.