Homage to Annabhau Sathe: Revolutionary poet, writer, dramatist, novelists, song writer, Ballad writer, activists, Marxists, staunch Ambedkarite, leader of the masses, and internationalist.
Annabhau Sathe was a revolutionary figure who gave a revolutionary slogan “Yeh Azadi Jhooti Hai, Desh Ki Janata Bhooki Hai”:
This Freedom Is contradictory, The citizens of the country are hungry.
Then Annabhau Sathe summarizes his methods encapsulated in the poetic metric “Jag Badal Ghaluni Ghaanv, Saangun Gele Mala Bhimarao”:
Transform the world with powerful energy,
Bhimrao (Babasaheb Ambedkar) taught me this synergy.
All his life, Annabhau Sathe worked with a single purpose to remove the poverty and discrimination in India. His life was fully dedicated to the cause of India’s downtrodden who suffer from the twin problems of social exclusion and systemic starvation. Annabhau Sathe read widely and he was working closely with like-minded movements and organizations to build alliances to fight the social and economic evils, but his method was to transform minds through his writings, speeches, and literary work. His mind was very fertile and creative. He wrote many short stories, novels, poems, dramas, and ballads. There is no literary genre which he did not venture into.
All of his writings are socially oriented, they not only bring out the sufferings of men and women from the discriminated background but also brings out the positive force that sustains them in their fight against the social and economic oppression. His struggle is forcing him to express and expresses his intention to change the world not through the violence, but through the force of his powerful mind that has a tremendous capacity to express through all the medium possible. This ability to express freely is the hallmark of the mind that has understood the true freedom (Azadi): the freedom of human mind free from all the barriers.
It will take several pages just to write his literary achievements and even write the titles of his works.
But his amazing contribution came up in the area of activism. He was an activist who strove all his life to liberate his people. He was casteless and never sided with one caste in his life. His writings bring out the suffering of the Mahars, Matangs, and nomadic tribes, the prosecuted people in the world, and suffering of women. So, Annabhau Sathe is being reduced to the single caste by the present day politicians who would like to use his name to divide the Dalit community. He would be averse to the idea of his reduction into one caste and he will be very angry if it had happened when he was alive.
The brahminical system reduces the great people from the so called backward castes to their own caste and raises even the pettiest and meanest among them to the national stature. For example, in the history of Marathi literature, no one can match his status and the diverse writings he accomplished. No Brahmin writer can come close to him in terms of prolific output and creativity, but he has been reduced to the sidelines by the Brahminical propaganda. Phule, the Great, was one of the greatest writers of his time, but the Brahmins ridiculed his Marathi language. The irony is that the people from the backward castes fall prey to the same game of the Brahmins. In Maharashtra, a separate color, Yellow, the flag is now attached to the symbol of Annabhau Sathe so as to contrast it with Blue.
On his birthday today, we must realize his heart which was bleeding for the liberation of his people and we should also follow his advice for the liberation: the path shown by Babasaheb Ambedkar!
Author – Mangesh Dahiwale, Human Rights Activist
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