On my other blog called Mumbai Paused, I have a long running series on Dalit imagery from the streets of Mumbai. Since most of my readers are not from India, Dalits are what the oppressed people of the Indian subcontinent call themselves now and is not very different from racism, only a more mutated and well-entrenched form of it. The person who gave Dalits a voice is one of the founding fathers of India – Dr BR Ambedkar and the architect of the Indian constitution. He is educated in an American University and if you were to put a finger on his main weapon to fight discrimination, it would be education, if I have to base it only on my limited observation on our streets.
This translates to these things about books and education on the streets on Mumbai. I will let the images of the books speak.
On June 8th 2020, a mentally unstable man destroyed some of the flower pots outside the home where Dr Amebkar used to live. The house in Dadar called Rajagriha has the collection of Dr Ambedkar’s books – 50,000 of them. The oppressors that the Dalits are fighting are the caste supremacists who are not very keen on anyone other than whom they consider superior to have an education. If you look at it, that’s the reason states, where caste supremacists ideas are strong, have primary education on low priority. The news or rumours was that it was the caste supremacists to attacked the house and no one was surprised because, since the lockdown, the attacks on Dalits and tribals have accelerated across India.