IGNCA chief says Nehru didn’t want Ambedkar in Constituent Assembly

Rai added that he believed in “what Ambedkar had himself said during his Constituent Assembly address in November 1949”. “

Written by Divya A | New Delhi | Updated: June 13, 2016 5:09 am
br ambedkar, jawaharlal nehru, IGNCA, mahatman gandhi, congress, jdu, indian express news, india news Ram Bahadur Rai

B R Ambedkar would have been “ousted” from the Constituent Assembly if Jawaharlal Nehru had had his way, IGNCA chief Ram Bahadur Rai has said.

Speaking about Ambedkar during a media interaction on Saturday, Rai said, “Ambedkar should have been made finance minister of India by Nehru. If it was in Nehru’s hand, Ambedkar would have been ousted from the Constituent Assembly. It was only due to Mahatma Gandhi’s interference that Ambedkar was there.”

He added that he believed in “what Ambedkar had himself said during his Constituent Assembly address in November 1949”. “Anyone who wants to know more about Ambedkar’s role should refer to the transcript of his address on November 24, 1949, during the Constituent Assembly debate,” Rai said.

With both the Congress and JD(U) seeking his removal from the post, Rai said he would fight the battle himself.

The interaction came a day after the first meeting of the newly constituted executive committee of the Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts (IGNCA) to chalk out a vision for the institution. Rai said the IGNCA plans to start specialised courses on culture such as museumology, intangible heritage, archaeology and cultural management from next year, with an aim to create “skilled cultural manpower”. For this, they were in talks with CBSE to introduce culture as an elective subject in schools.

IGNCA Member-Secretary Sachchidanand Joshi said that IGNCA will commence diploma courses from the next academic session.

He said the centre would kick off Sanskriti Samvad Srinkhala (Cultural Dialogue Series) on July 28, comprising dialogues on arts, culture, philosophy and lifestyle. The first programme starts on July 28 to mark the 90th birthday of Hindi author Namwar Singh, who had raised a strong pitch against the ‘award wapsi’ campaign last year.

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