Amid the ongoing Dalit anger and protests over the alleged dilution of SC/ST Atrocities Act, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said that his government is walking on the path shown by Dalit icon Bhimrao Ambedkar.
“We are walking on the path shown by Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar. At the core of Dr. Ambedkar's ideals is harmony and togetherness. Working for the poorest of the poor is our mission,” Modi said during the inauguration ceremony of the new building of Western Court Annexe.
In a veiled reference to Rahul Gandhi’s “anti-Dalit” BJP-RSS remark, the prime minister said, “No other government has done as much as we have in honouring Ambedkar.”
On Monday, Rahul Gandhi had slammed the BJP-led central government for the plight of Dalits in the country and said, “Keeping Dalits at the lowest rung of Indian society is in the DNA of the RSS/BJP.”
The Congress president also extended his support to the nation-wide bandh called by the Dalit organisations against a Supreme Court ruling on SC/ST Atrocities Act.
“Thousands of my Dalit brothers and sisters have come out on the streets to demand protection of their rights from the (Narendra) Modi government. We (Congress and I) salute them,” Rahul added.
Modi attacked the Congress for ignoring Ambedkar International centre project and said that his government is honouring the father of India’s Constitution by completing projects conceived in his memory.
“At the core of Dr. Ambedkar's ideals is peace and togetherness. Working for the poorest of the poor is our mission," the PM added.
Modi’s remark on the Dalit icon is seen as highly significant amid growing Dalit anger following the incidents of vandalism of Ambedkar statue across the BJP ruled states.