Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Jai Bhim

Jai Bhim - Only those truely emulating Ambedkar should wish among themselves

>But if that is what you are trying to point out,>then why did you talk about the retaliation by your colleagues, and>compare this retaliation with the problems of dalits during the>tsunami, because the tsunami discrimination was caste based, whereas>you are talking about professional ettiquetes.Vaibhav, if we behave in a particular way, then what is wrong if they behavein same way?>But what if you are sitting with your>uppercaste colleagues just chatting and someone comes and says jai>bhim to you. What is the problem with that.In general at IITB and generally in the corporate world, and globally, it isconsidered impolite to emphasis one's cultural identity with a peer, whilein the presence of people from other cultures.When one is onsite through software companies, one is explicitly instructednot to speak in hindi with colleagues in the presence of western clientfolks. It is simple politeness to do this. Mixing cultural pride with thisis wasteful and could even be counter-productive. Just imagine the scene ata company where 90% employees are ISCKON followers. If the only two dalitswere to intrusively wish each other, it is safe to assume that they wouldexplicitly encourage the 90% non-dalits to wish each other and these dalits"jai shri ram" and then the dalit guys would have to face the question ofwhether to say "hi" or "jai shri ram". Lets be careful about theimplications of our actions, given that we are a minority, which HAS NOALTERNATIVE to living with the majority.>Also what is this deal of>being open about your dalit identity once you are in a top spot. Are>you trying to say that you will say jai bhim in corporate meetings>when you are a bit shot in your profession. Could you please>elaborate on all this.I already have. Read my mail carefully. You don't seem to have read itcarefully. Please do and ask specific questions.> Also I would like to know as to why did you bring>this topic on this forum in the first place.I see this topic as critical to this forum. I do not exactly need your oranyones permission for this. I have raised this topic on other forums too.>IF you are saying that>you haven't seen any dalit say jai bhim openly in a corporate meeting,>then it is who's critism that made you write an email pointing fingers>at the issue of saying jai bhim in your office.I am not reacting to anyones criticism. I am reacting to theshort-sightedness of people who spread wrong values without knowing whatthey are doing and go around without taking ownership of the implications oftheir views for poor dalits struck with Tsunami and deprived of food.>YOu are talking of>junior professionals think of themselves being professionals before>being dalits. The question is if you haven't seen anyone saying jai>bhim in office meetings then why do you think junior professionals>bring their dalitness before their profession that you seem to have>brought forward this discussion on theis egroup.If they are not bringing their dalitness to office, then that is good forthem. I am telling them that they should ignore folks who keep tell themthat they should take their dalitness to office.>Also could you>please elaborate on your thesis of dalit centric social workers being>responsible for the tsunami tragedy. I don't seem to follow your logic>there.You do not seem to read carefully. How much more clearly can I write? I amblaming those intellectuals on this forum and others who tell dalitprofessionals to be dalits before being professionals (by saying Jai Bhim orassociating on the basis of caste in work places) for the deaths of thedalits in the Tsunami tragedy. It is the actions of such intellectuals whichhelped those social workers to justify their actions. And I fail to see howthis kind of an intellectual can argue that those social workers didanything wrong.Just try to imagine a scenario where those dalits had not died. In thatcase, what argument would these intellectuals have. They tell dalits todiscriminate among dalits and non-dalits. Then what is wrong if those socialworkers discriminate between dalits and non-dalits?Any intellectual who tells a dalit professional to distinguish between dalitcolleagues and non-dalit colleagues in his professional life is setting up asimilar tragedy. And these sham intellectuals refuse to understand clearlystated accusations and refuse to take responsibility for implications oftheir advice. I am trying to make dalit professionals aware of where theirbest interests lie.>> The way to see this is simple, if>your uppercaste colleague does not talk about his ram and sita etc in>front of you, why should you start talking about brahimisim etc in>front of him. Also if you are not in a meeting or something and if>someone approaches you and says jai bhim what is the big deal with>that, your colleagues konw you are a dalit so it shouldn't be a big>problem, just as it shouldnt be a big problem if some of your>colleagues friends come to him and say jai shri ram.>Vaibhav, what do you plan to do yourself if you come to India and work in acompany, where people come and wish you "jai shri ram"?> Also it is really stupid to tell your>uppercaste colleague that the brahmins are responsible for all the>country's problem and start a fight uncessearily, just as it is>stupid of him to be for anti-reservations in front of you.>>>> Also I am not sure why you have the view that I think>that every non angry dalit is trying to hide his dalitness. What have>I said in this forum that makes you draw such conclusions.Your mail was confused whether it accused me of being a stooge or did notaccuse me. That was the reason for the response. I notice that you have notresponded to that section.>I am not an>angry dalit myself.I have tried hard not to say this. Let me know if I failed and said thissomewhere>Also could you elaborate as to what it means to>wear dalitness on their sleeves. Is saying jai bhim in your office>among dalit friends wearing dalitness on your sleeves.IF there are only dalit colleagues around, or known dalit sympatisers orclose friends, then saying "jai bhim in office is ok. Else it is wearingdalitness on one's sleeves.>I dont think so.Sure. I have stated an opinion. I am sure that time will tell us who iswrong.>> Well concerning your comment on a lot of dalits not>trying their best but simply shouting. Well sir, now what do we have>here, you are trying to say that dalits are responsible for their own>problems.Dalits are not wholly and alone responsible for their problem. But they aresignificantly responsible for their own problems, esp. since reservationsand other legal support mechansims became available.>So I guess that is the reason that we don't have any dalits>in the private sector. I guess that is our own problem.Of course. The dreams of our folk have been limited to government and publicsectors, even after getting educated from IITs and IIMs. If folks don't eventry, how can they blame someone else for them not landing MNC bank jobs.To say that Marwadi's and Gujjus are rich because they are not dalits andthat Ambani, Narayan Murthy became what they became because they were notdalits is sheer bull shit. Dalits have slightly more problems than thesepeople, when they try to follow them. Lets talk with examples of people whohave tried as hard as they did for atleast 10 years. I know that there aretoo few people who even try. Clearly it is our problem.>Also Mr>Tambay, what are you trying to say, let us say we have a dalit>sweeper, basically he does not do any work, just eats away at the>governments money. Our poor dalit kids go to school, but finally they>don't try hard and that is the reason they fail. Well jobs are in a>plenty but dalits don't want to work that is why they don't get any>job. Could you please elaborate on why do you think that it is the>absence of dalit hard work that is responsible for their problems.When you visit Mumbai next time, I will take you to K.M colony (Also calledAmbedkar colony) in Khar, which I wrote about. And show you the evidence.Despite reservations and possibility of education, folks take the easy wayout and work for BMC, public sector - small jobs. They do not try hard tobecome something - like Ambedkar did. People get locked up in "jai bhim",rather than doing doctorate from columbia and D.Sc from LSE, etc. I feelvery sad when I see dalits satisfy themselves that they are saying "jaibhim" and doing sweeper jobs and celebrating Ambedkarite festivals with kithand kin without trying hard to become the stellar Indian and global citizenthat Dr. Ambedkar was. It is the highest level of insult of Dr. Ambedkar. Ihave seen and keep seeing many such misguided Ambedkarites who mistake thetree for the forest.The simplest way to kill the ideals that Dr. Ambedkar lived his life by isto deify him. Making him a god, relieves dalits of the responsiblity ofemulating his high standards in their own lives. That is what many of this"tokenism-centric" jai-bhim walas do. Really does it matter if univerisitiesand airports are named after Dr. Ambedkar, if the level of education, moneyand property in our commu ity does not increase.> Well even though you have had a slice of time to live>the life of a troubled dalit when you were in IIT you still have never>figured out why is it that dalits behave the way they do.I know why dalits behave as they do. That is the reason I say and do thingsthat I say and do.>Well>if you are working hard now in your professional life, why didn't you>work as hard in IIT's. You did tell me that you were completely>discouraged when you were in IIT's. Then you give an example of Mr>Chaitanya patel, but the thing is if he was such a big example why is>it that even today the conditions of dalit students in these>institutes is still probelmatic.Chinmay Karsandas Patel is a landmark. I know that Takshak Nag works for astartup in Pune, which will crack it. I know that Daya Airody worked formore than one startup. I know that I myself did. I know that Ashay Kadam diddoctorate from Stern business school and teaches finance at City businessschool in London. I know the sentiment at IITB, when I went there for thefunction where Raju Kamble spoke. I know that things are changing. Theattitudes that our people have are changing, due to people like all of us.>Or for that matter why is it that our>young dalit students saurav arya or gaurav himkar complain so much,>with their angry poems and have low grades.Vaibhav, in my time, we did not have any support system outside IIT. Thesefolks have us. Clearly I am sure that the average grades, average prospectsafter graduation are improving. I have already personally given reference toa good number of folks and helped others to improve their job and careerprospects.Things are improving. In my time, I would never have had access to a guylike you who could potentially guide me about how to get into a US doctoralprogramme and survive. I would never have got access to the help that AnoopKheri is getting.Everything does not change at once. For every Saurav and Gaurav, there isalso a Chinmay to be accounted for. Besides, we don't really know howgood/bad Saurav and Gaurav are academically.>I guess your explanation>would be that they don't study, don't work hard and they are to be>blamed for their own problems.Dalits who don't study despite getting the opportunity due to their "learnedhelplessness" need to be provided better examples and support to be better.Their anger needs to get channelised in improving their situations, ratherin being a nuisance to others and/or in self-destructive manners.>Compare that to the case of a dalit>living on the streets and the problems get magnified a hundred fold,>but Mr Tambay you seem to be blame all our problems on us and blame me>for trying to celebrate the miseries of our people.Vaibhav, I actually do blame you for trying to help people to get off easilyin terms of their response to their problems.>> Concerning me not respecting the constitution etc. Well let>me tell you that that we have the name of marathawada university after>babasaheb is because of the contribution of these people that you>think should be in prison.BIG DEAL. The same number of people still go hungry and the same number ofatrocities still happen. If these folks had spent that time building a dam,that time would have been more gainfully employed. Why do we stop attokenism? Why are you helping them to feel good by mere tokenism? The realtask to change our reality not the name of our reality. Changing names istrivial. Changing the reality under the name is more difficult.>The reason that reservations of which the>facilities you have yourself enjoyed is because of these foul mouthed>dalits who will selflessly enter a riot or a procession.Perhaps you follow some other leade because I am not aware of Dr. Ambedkarleading our people into any riot. I follow Dr. Ambedkar in thought word andaction in trying to change reality, not some jingoistic politicians whoplays for token name changes. It was Dr. Ambedkar who gave us reservations,not some jingoistic politician who causes riots. I personally will enter anyviolent situation if justice is to be upheld. That is what the buddha saidand that is what Ambedkar said. We don't need foul mouthed leaders andfollowers. Ambedakar and buddha are enough.When I say>we should respect them, I don't mean that we should become criminals>or become illeterates, but recongnise that a lot that we well to do>dalits have gained a lot because of them, most of the facilities that>they themselves don't enjoy . If it wasn't for these dalits tommorow>bala thackrey will remove reservations out from maharasthra.>Should I who lived and worked in Mumbai all my life listen to you who staysfar away, about how maharastra politics works. If you take out the wordAmbedkar and all that goes with it, what do these leaders and followershave. And all I am saying that the leaders and intellectuals aremisunderstanding Ambedkar and consequently misguiding people. And BTW, BalThakeray cannot remove reservations. He is a one medium player in one stateamong a large number of states.> ALso even in india, my views that the heroic dalits of today>are the beggars or the criminals etc will not get me in to a problem>of anykind, but a lot of dalits will agree with what I am really>trying to say. I will get in to problems critising brahmins in a room>full of brahmins.You are encouraging people to admire criminals. You are against religion andlaw. And esp. given that the law was written by the dalit Manu ... Dr.Ambedkar. I am sure that no sensible thinking dalit will agree.RegardsPratap
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