On 20th March 1927, Dr Ambedkar led Mahad Satyagraha for access to water for the untouchables and later so called upper caste Hindus organised purification of the Chavdar Tale. After 90 years, on 20th March 2017, newly elected Chief Minister (CM) of one of the largest states in India, Uttar Pradesh (UP), organised purification (as they say in Hindi ‘Shudikarn’) of the CM house before entering in it.
Chavdar Tale, Mahad Purification
March 20, 1927, the day untouchables finally touched the water of Chavdar Tale with the association of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar at Mahad in the Raigad district of the Konkan region of Maharashtra. The main organiser of this movement was R B More, introduced Dr Ambedkar and his other colleagues like Anantrao Chitre, Bapu Sahasrabuddhe and Sitaram Shivtarkar. This was the “foundational struggle” of the Dalit movement, a movement for water – and for caste annihilation.
On 19th March 1927, Dr Ambedkar gave an encouraging speech. People just went with electrifying energy and flame out with the intention to throw out the slavery of thousands of year. On the next day 20th March 1927, in this Satyagraha, thousands of untouchables for the first time drank water from the lake that for centuries had been set aside only for caste Hindus.
After untouchables touched the water of the Chavdar Tale, upper caste Hindus from throughout India raised the voice against Dr Ambedkar and even many Hindus threatened to kill him. The Hindu inhabitants of the town saw the scene. They were taken by storm. They stood aghast witnessing this scene which they had never seen before. For the moment they seemed to be stunned and paralysed. The procession in form of fours marched past and went to the Chawdar tank, and the Untouchables for the first time drank the water. Soon the Hindus, realising what had happened, went into the frenzy and committed all sorts of atrocities upon the Untouchables who had dared to pollute the water.
The upper caste Hindus came to a conclusion that the water of Chavdar lake has been polluted by the touch of untouchables. Hence purification is needed. They threw the water purification program, brought water from Ganges and purified the Lake (and maybe urine of cow was drizzled in the water to purify the water of the lake and who knows even cow dung might have also been used?).
5 Kalidas Marg, Lucknow (CM House) Purification
A few days ago, Ex-CM of UP, Akhilesh Yadav and his father Mulayam Singh Yadav were present at the swearing-in-ceremony of Yogi Adityanath, who has been elected by BJP to lead one of the critical states of India and has criminal records. Purification of the CM house is an insult to Ex-CM of UP, Akhilesh Yadav, who belongs to OBCs community (considered lower in caste hierarchy). Did he make it impure while staying during his tenure that there was a need for purification?
He stayed at VVIP Guest House after the swearing-in ceremony. He has decided not to enter the house without proper prayers and purification ritual. Seven priests from Gorakhpur conducted purification at the UP CM’s official residence then only Yogi entered the house.
Isn’t it a tight slap on the face of Yadav family who was present at swearing-in-ceremony of Yogi Adityanath? Remember Savitribai Phule has said almost 150 years ago that no matter if you offer milks at temples they will still throw you away. Why don’t even educated Dalit-Bahujans understand that? Earlier Yogi Adityanath has been reported saying that caste system is good. Such a sick mentality and they talk about development. Development of whom? Development based on caste hierarchy?
How can UP develop when it is in the hands of such a not only castiest and superstitious but anti-Muslim and anti-Christian person? Will there be any development in education or scientific knowledge under his regime? It would be a wild dream even to think that.
Smash the Steel Frames of the Caste System
When Dalits-Bahujans were observing the 90th anniversary of the Mahad Satyagraha, purification of the CM house was going on at Lucknow. The whole Hindu Caste System has been maintained till now through this concept of pure and impure, in which lower castes are impure and higher castes are pure.
Dr. Ambedkar attempted to change the Hindu mindset. As he said the aim of Mahad Satyagraha was to unfurl “the banner of equality” and to smash the “steel frames of the caste system”. Dr. Ambedkar retorted communal people who criticized Mahad Satyagraha by declaring that, the Satyagraha was to end the special privileges enjoyed by the caste Hindus. [Dr Ambedkar, BAWS Vol 17 (1)]
If you say your religion is our religion, then your rights and our rights must be equal. The religion which discriminates between two followers is partial and the religion which treats crores of its adherents worse than dogs and criminals and inflicts upon them insufferable disabilities is no religion at all. Religion is not the appellation for such an unjust order. Religion and slavery are incompatible. (Dhananjay Keer, Dr. Babasahab Ambedkar: Life and Mission (Bombay: Popular Prakashan, page 92)
Purification of 5 Kalidas Marg raises the question, what has changed for Dalit-Bahujans? Nothing, still they face same caste violence, still Dalits don’t have proper access to water and same caste discrimination in the hands of so called upper castes. The need of the time is not to purify the houses or water but sick casteist mentality these so called upper castes have. They should clean the rubbish from their minds.