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Constitution – Contemporary Challenges

Dalit Sthree Sakthi organized a conference on the theme “Constitution – Contemporary Challenges” on the eve of 71st Republic Day at conference hall, Ravindra Bharathi, Hyderabad on 26th January 2020. The conference was presided over by Sri. Kaki Madhava Rao, IAS, Former Chief Secretary, while Justice G. Chandraiah, Chairperson of State Human Rights Commission, Telangana was the chief guest. Other dignitaries on the dais were: Dr B Vijaya Bharathi, Former Director, Telugu Academy and writer, Dr Madhava Rao, Prof Kanche Ilaiah, Sri. A Murali IAS, Prof. K Y Ratnam, HCU, Dr. Siddoji Rao, Convener of SC, ST, IAS, IPS Officers Forum, Jhansi Geddam, National Convener of DSS, GDV Prakash, National Program Manager of DSS. All the dignitaries on the dais expressed their opinions on the Indian Constitution and the state of its implementation. The highlights culled out from the speeches of the honourable guestsare as follows:

  • It’s not the failure of the constitution, but the failure of the rulers in implementing it.

  • The personnel of the executive wing and the legislature need to understand the provisions of the Constitutions and capture its spirit.

  • Ambedkar had asserted that the constitution can really be implemented only if there is Social, Political and Economic Democracy.

  • Ambedkar felt that caste, religion, race, gender disparities, regionalism and economic disparities will be the main hurdles in realising the constitution.

  • The challenges are not new, but they need to be overcome or solved.

  • Constitution reflects the thoughts and ideology of Dr B R Ambedkar. Most of the rulers often say that they are Ambedkarites, but their failure in the implementation of the constitution is an indication that they are against the ideology of Ambedkar.

  • The political independence is now only limited to the national flag and national anthem The rulers are now saying that the constitution has become out dated and are proposing to bring in a new constitution. Do they mean to bring in Manu dharma sastra in the place of the constitution?

  • Economic democracy has not been promoted after independence and therefore there is no remarkable change in the economic development of the Dalits.

  • The government claims that there is growth in the GDP but we can clearly see that there is no real change in the lives of Dalit/Adivasis.

  • There are economic disparities and the gap between the rich and the poor is widening. We all need to understand the ideology of Ambedkar in its true spirit to overcome all the hurdles.

  • Justice should be equitable and reach all in the same manner.

  • There must be equal opportunities in economic, social and political spheres.

  • Life and Liberty is the birth right of everyone.

  • We need to have gender equality, special opportunities for the oppressed and depressed, effective implementation of the special Acts.

  • The elected representatives have to discharge their dutiessincerely and effectively.

  • In other countries there is only economic discrimination, whereas in our country we have caste discrimination and in the social ladder SCs and STs are being perpetuated in the lower rung as untouchables and exploited.

  • Religion is posing a big challenge and as Dr B R Ambedkar said we need to come out of blind beliefs.

  • Ambedkar suggested nationalization of land whereas, our rulers are privatising various government sectors and letting them off toa few corporate giants.

  • Ambedkar visualized the plight of women, children, the aged and made provisions in the constitution for their protection, but the pity is that these provisions are not being implemented.

  • Even after 70 years of independent India many are landless, homeless, unemployed and are denied basic amenities such as potable water.

  • The role of executive and judiciary are very important in the implementation of the constitution.

Later Justice Chandraiah and Dr Vijaya Bharathi were felicitated. Dr Vijaya Bharathi responded to the felicitations. She said that the established practice has always been to felicitate only the poets and writers belonging to the brahmin community, but not Dalits. The British regime Jyothi Rao Phule was the first one to be facilitated which had sent shock waves across the country. Therefore, there is every need for us to honour and felicitate our own people, recognise and acknowledge one’s services.

The meeting was concluded with a vote thanks by GDV Prakash.

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