Controversial cartoon of Ambedkar keeps Parliament hot

May 12, 2012 10:01
Controversial cartoon of Ambedkar keeps Parliament hot

Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar the creator of our constitution is not an icon of a segment of people, but the leader of the nation. He is well adored by one and all. If one looks closer of a saying by the veteran leader, then the truth shall dawn. "Learn to live in this world with self-respect. You should always cherish some ambition to do something in this world. They alone rise who strive. Some of you nurse the wrong notion that you will not rise in this world. But remember that the age of helplessness has ended. A new epoch has set in. All things are now possible because of your being able to participate in the Politics & Legislatures of this country." This is what the great soul had said about democracy that gives all of us equal rights to voice our opinion.

Dr Ambedkar is a National Leader:
Such an esteemed leader was figured as a cartoon in the National Centre for Educational Research and Training (NCERT) textbook, which is outrageous!! This has been the hottest debatable topic amidst circles across the country. Political parties which wait for chances pounced on the UPA over the issue and rocked the parliament. The parties claimed that the cartoon was insulting, true. Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal was immediate to respond and said though he was not a Minister at that time; he had no hesitation to apologize for the insertion.

Mr Sibal apologized in the parliament:
The Union Minister made a statement in this regard on Friday in the parliament. Mr Sibal said he had written to the NCERT in April asking it to withdraw the offending cartoon from the Political Science textbook of Class XI. The Minister said distribution of these textbooks has been stopped and a review has been ordered not just of the cartoons but also of the content of the textbooks. Next year we will remove all such contents from the textbooks, added the Minister.

Speaking to the waiting reporters Mr Sibal said, "Ambedkar was a great man. I was not the minister at that time and not in the department. I took action the moment I got to know about it. The cartoon was objectionable and I apologize to the people that the cartoon featured in the book. We had no intention to condemn any section of the society." "I have taken a further decision that the textbooks which contain this particular cartoon shall not be further distributed," he added.

The Union Minster also said, "Much before the issue came to parliament, I had already taken action. I called for the NCERT text books and I looked at other cartoons. I realized that there were many other cartoons that were not in good taste and disparaging in nature. They were not sending the right message to our children in classrooms." "All such content will be removed from NCERT text books next year. The cartoon was of course objectionable. This should be withdrawn," he added.

Leaders of parties that protested:
The issue that rocked the Parliament on Friday was raised by Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP) chief and Dalit leader Mayawati. She was supported by members from all parties including Lok Janshakti Party's Ramvilas Paswan, Rashtriya Janata Dal's Ramkripal Yadav, CPI's D. Raja, BJP's Thaawar Chand Gehlot , CPI-M's T.K. Rangarajan,  and Thol Thirumavalavan, the Lok Sabha MP who heads the Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi of Tamil Nadu. The leader of the house Pranab Mukherjee agreed with the protest and said that the cartoon was 'totally wrong. '


Actual Cartoon depiction:
The controversial cartoon depicts Nehru as asking Ambedkar to speed up the work on the Constitution. It was first published in 1950s by cartoonist Shankar in his weekly magazine and reproduced in NCERT Class 11 political science textbooks. The cartoon shows former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru with a whip in his hand chasing Ambedkar, who is seated on a snail, representing Constitution.  (With Inputs from Internet- Aarkay)

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