Babasaheb Ambedkar’s Relevance to the Indian Muslims?

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Why Ambedkar means to me? Chauvinistic never realised the contribution of his vision and works toward the progress of Dalit Bahujan. Baba Saheb fought his entire life for the protection & upliftment of Oppressed classes and that is why today Dalits, Tribes, Labour, Women progressing or able to live with rights & dignity. Babasaheb is the one who is still ruling the hearts & minds of millions of destitute of the world after 6 decades of his Jayanti. Remembering Dr. Ambedkar comes naturally to the people, no one forces upon them. He is regarded constitution framer, indigenised liberty, equality, fraternity principles in Indian soil. His immense work on social justice and social work has kept him alive in a much conspicuous manner on all aspects. His tall figure becomes compulsion for every ruling government irrespective of political affiliation. In the 21st century Dr. B R Ambedkar regarded the most notable intellectual who built the agenda of inclusive society in India much before one could imagine for those downtrodden and feared and discriminated Muslims.

I idolise Dr B R Ambedkar as a most prolific writer who never stop writing about betterment of the excluded sections and for the upliftment of every individual and group of the Indian society. One cannot deny that Dr Ambedkar stands taller than anyone in Indian history. His works becomes emancipatory for Dalits, Minorities and oppressed communities. He has universal appealing and inspirational character that is being now specifically roll modelled in African continent.

So far as concern of minorities in India, Muslims are the largest minority and second majority population in the country. Ironically seven decades passed still majority of this community remains extremely backward in all fronts lagging behind Dalits in education and socio-economic position. Different Governments appointed committees/commissions in their tenure periodically to find out the causes of educational and economic backwardness of Muslims. The most famous “Sachar Committee” which clearly reveals only 4 per cent Muslim population is educated and it is the most educationally and economically backward minority in the country. It is also well known fact that Muslims are not a monolithic community; it also contains diverse identity as others Indian. The social and cultural life of the Muslims, living in various parts of the country, display distinctive features, as they are influenced by both the Islamic as well as regional and local traditions. Muslims are the members of Islamic community (Umma) out of common belief and faith. But it is not concern of everyday practical life, where they interact with the local cultures. Therefore, curiosity arises in many quarters to know the nature and character of this community with special reference to their society and culture. In contemporary world situation Islamophobic behavoiur is in full display and Indian Muslims are not untouched by this spurious communal paint. The community has been experiencing all types of violence.

Dr. Ambedkar is being deliberately referred as Dalit icon/leader by some Brahmanical forces which is untrue. In fact, he was the leader of masses; he is still the contemplation and inspiration for every deprived section of the society. His works on social, economic, educational, political are still relevant and needs to be incorporated if this nation has to transform from developing county to developed country. Those who are writing in blogs/social media are having little knowledge about Babasaheb and his work for the nation and Indian society. I have gone through many posts in social Media or in Blogs where a small section of contributors are prejudiced, have irrational criticism and misleading. They have their own agenda or have anti-Ambedkar stance. To the contrary, majority of Indian see Ambedkar as ‘the architect of modern India’. Those who are interested to know about Babasaheb and his contribution need to read his literature, books and speeches of him. Ambedkar’s work covers variety of issues prevailing even today along with probable & possible solution to deals those problems.

The modern democracy rest on the principle of liberty and equality, Babasaheb was staunch believer of social equality and it could be realized only by democratic principle in Indian society. According to him social equality means when people of all sections of the society were considered equal in status. Moreover he wants equal representation of the underprivileged in social as well as in political sphere. He also wants everyone to get equal education and employment opportunities. This may look very easy but due to the caste inequalities in India about a century ago, it was tough to implement. Whatever changes we can see today regarding equality, a huge credit goes to him for making laws which guaranteed equality to all in the country. I cannot say that he was hundred percent successful in achieving his goal but he could accomplish what others called impossible.

Muslims as a marginalized group also get strength from Ambedkar ideas for its upliftment and his constitutional guarantees provide legal safeguards from oppression. A nation cannot reach at pick in the development index until unless all join hand together. Unfortunately, Muslims largely pushed behind the wall and blame goes to both state and community itself. There are constant negligence indifferently by Social scientists like sociologists, Social Workers and social anthropologists, academicians, scholars, researchers, planners and policy makers, social activists and the like have not paid as much attention to study the Muslims society in particular as it deserves from empirical point of view. Even though, in latest past very insignificant and least amount of studies were in print but those are too minute to fill the gap of our awareness and perceptive about the people under study and owing to which we hardly know about their society, social structure, social organization, social problems, culture, social change, process of development, pattern of their subsistence economy, gender studies of the Muslims societies and so on while a good number of studies mostly advocates towards the Islamic theology, Islamic ideology, religious reformatory movements, personal laws, historical perspectives and the like.



  1. Baba Sahib Ambedkar Writings and speeches Bombay 1979, Vol.14, part 2.
  2. Ambedkar, B.R. (1917), “Castes in India. Their Mechanism, Genesis and Development”, Indian Antiquary, May 1917, vol. 61, reproduced in Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Writings and Speeches, vol. 1, Bombay, Government of Maharashtra, 1979
  3. B.R. Ambedkar (1936), “Annihilation of Caste” Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Writing and Speeches, Vol. 1, p. 15, Bombay.
  4. Das, B. (1969), “Thus spoke Ambedkar”, Jalandhar: Bheem Patrika Publications, 4, p. 108.
  5. Jatava (2008), B.R. Ambedkar in Modern World, Jaipur, ABD Publishers.
  6. R. Ambedkar (1946), The Untouchables: Who were they and why they became Untouchables? “ in Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Writings and Speeches, vol. 7, pp. 290-303
  7. Jatava, D.R. (2001), Sociological Thoughts of B.R. Ambedkar, Jaipur: ABD Publishers.
  8. Jatava, D.R. (2004), Ambedkar: The Prime Mover, Jaipur: ABD Publishers.
  9. Basant and A. Shariff (2010), Handbook of Muslims in India: Empirical and Policy Perspectives, New Delhi: Oxford University Press, p. 2.
  10. Kazi, S. (1991), “Muslim Women in India – A Report” London, UK: Minority Rights Group International, pp. 24-25.
  11. Siddiqui, M. K. A. (2011), “Muslims in India: Issues and Challenges” (A collection of articles), Kolkata: Abadi Publication, pp. 213 & 214.
  12. Mahmood, T. (2001), “Minorities Commission: Minor Role in Major Affairs”, New Delhi: Pharos Media & Publishing (P) Ltd., pp. 13-14

MD Tabrez Alam is a Ph.D. Scholar at Indian Institute of Dalit Studies, New Delhi, awarded MPhil degree from Centre for the Study of Social Exclusion & Inclusive Policy, MANUU, Hyderabad, Master of Social Work from Central University of Rajasthan, Graduated in Social Work from Osmania University, Hyderabad. His journey starts from social work to academic pursuant. As a researcher, the quest for knowledge begins from the fieldwork. Currently, he is working on Urban inequality and housing segregations in newly developed township India.




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