(The Annual meet of D.I.E.T was held on 5th May, 2012, in Hyderabad. We thank Sujatha Surepally for sharing this report on the event)
Dalit Information and Education Trust's (DIET) Annual meet was held on 5th May, 2012 at Hotel Grand plaza, Nampally, Hyderabad. It was a memorable event. Though it was titled as 'Book Reviews and Felicitations', there was much more to describe, feel proud about at the meet, and to celebrate our own people's contribution to dalit literature, criticism, rediscovering Ambedkar etc. A culmination of different views and perspectives, bundles of experiences, thoughts of different generations, the agonies and strategies of building movements for dignity. It presented a rare opportunity, and indeed was a marvelous day.
The venue was filled with living legends like Kathi Padma Rao, K.S. Chalam, literary flame B.S. Ramulu on one side; and Gogu Shyamala, who struggled for seven years to bring out Sada Laxmi's biography 'Nene Balanni', the writer Y. B. Satyanarayana, architect of his father's story ('Being a Dalit'), and the visionary 'My father Balaiah' book, which was widely reviewed in national and international circles; well- known academicians, K.Y. Ratnam, Prof. Mallesham, Prof. Bhanghya Bhukya, Prof. Gundemeda Nagaraju, powerful telangana Dalit writer Nandi Yellaiah (of 'Kakka' fame), and multi talented Atluri Sudhakar, Gavarraju and the key organiser Panthukala Srinivas, scholars from EFLU, HCU, Osmania, Satavahana Unviersities. ..endless list, one could find people from different walks of life, all aspiring to have an empowered society of their own, corruption-free, intellectually bestowed knowledge etc.
N.Sudhakar & T. Muthamil Selvan Naga
Ambedkar.In releases 'Annihilation of caste' audio book on Babasaheb Ambedkar Jayanti, 2012
The Jat-Pat-Todak Mandal, a Hindu reformist organization, chooses the problem of caste system in India for its annual conference discussion in the year 1936. Mr. Sant Ram, the Secretary of the Jat-Pat-Todak Mandal, on behalf of the Mandal executive committee requests Dr. Ambedkar to be the President of the annual conference and address in detail "Why it is not possible to break Caste without annihilating the religious notions on which it, the Caste system, is founded?" Dr. Ambedkar did not like to be a part of the movement which was carried on by Caste Hindu social reformers, because their attitude towards social reform was so different from him and he found it difficult to pull on with them. Therefore when the Mandal first approached, Dr. Ambedkar declined their invitation to preside.
(Excerpt from a recent article by Dr. Yashwant Manohar in the Marathi daily 'Sakal'. Thanks, Gouri Patwardhan, for the translation-- Round Table India)
Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar had a special interest in painting. He loved seeing paintings and really wanted to be able to draw well. He learned to draw from B R Madilagekar. He bought many books to study painting. He used to lose himself completely while painting. It was after reading Churchill's book 'Painting as a pastime' that he developed such passion in painting.
[This is the second part of excerpts from an interview with Baby Kamble conducted by Maya Pandit, originally published as part of the English version of her autobiography ('The Prisons We Broke')]
Continued from here.
How did you think of writing your autobiography?
(Laughs.) It so happened that I used to sit in the shop at the counter. I used to have plenty of time on my hands. There were books that came along with the old newspapers we bought for packing. Some of them were story books and I began to read them. Many contained stories about gods and their great deeds. But gradually I started feeling very angry because the stories were all wrong. Consider for instance, the story of Vrinda, a Shudra princess.
[Babytai Kamble passed away on April 21, 2012. She will continue to inspire us, keeping us connected to the joys and pain of the community, urging us to step beyond individual concerns, anchoring us firmly to Ambedkarism as we move ahead with the struggle for equality and freedom. In our sorrow today we hold on to the strength of her words ~ Round Table India ]
Baby Kamble was a veteran of the Dalit movement in Maharashtra. Inspired by the radical leadership of Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar, she had been involved with the struggle from a very young age. She had established a government approved residential school for socially backward students in Nimbure, a small village near Phaltan. She had been honoured with awards for her literary and social work. Collections of her poetry have also been published.
We present here a few excerpts from an interview published as part of the English version of her autobiography 'The Prisons We Broke', translated by Maya Pandit.