Dalit organisation Bhim Army on Wednesday announced a series of events in the two days leading up to the upcoming January 1 anniversary of the Battle of Bhima Koregaon, with its firebrand leader and founder Chandrashekhar Azad, alias Ravan, planning to address a massive gathering of Dalit groups on December 30.
At a press conference, Datta Pol, the Pune district president of Bhim Army, said the organisation has planned to hold a ‘Bhima Koregaon Sangharsh Mahasabha’ on the SSPMS grounds in the city, in which Azad and several other leaders would participate.
The next day, on December 31, Azad also plans to address students at the Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) on the situation of the Ambedkarite movement, during an interaction titled ‘Samvad Ambedkari Tarunaishi (Dailogue with Ambedkarite Students).’
On January 1, Azad and others plan to visit the Jaystambh, the war monument at Perne village near Koregaon Bhima, which was erected by the British in the memory of the soldiers who died or were injured in the battle against Peshwas on January 1, 1818. Jaystambh has been the site of the main event of the anniversary every year.
“Azad will pay his tribute at the Jaystambh on January 1… Bhim Army has started preparing for the three-day event. We have filed an application before Pune City Police, seeking permission for the gathering at SSPMS ground. Police have not replied to us yet,” said Pol.