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All States Should Correct Ambedkar’s Name by Adding ‘Ramji’ to It: SC Panel Chief

Professor Ram Shanker Katheria said Ambedkar had signed his name as "Dr Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar" in the Constitution and so, his name should be used as such everywhere in the country.

Debayan Roy | News18.com

Updated:April 10, 2018, 7:25 PM IST
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All States Should Correct Ambedkar’s Name by Adding ‘Ramji’ to It: SC Panel Chief
File photo of Ram Shanker Katheria.
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New Delhi: The chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes said on Tuesday that all states will be urged to use the “correct” name of Baba Saheb Ambedkar as he had himself signed on the original draft of the Constitution.

Professor Ram Shanker Katheria told News18 that Ambedkar had signed his name as "Dr Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar" and so, his name should be used as such everywhere in the country.

“If we get an appeal to use Ramji with Ambedkar’s name everywhere, then surely I will consider it. I will personally write to all the Chief Ministers to use the name of Ambedkar as signed in the first copy of the Constitution," said Katheria.

The remark comes amidst what has been dubbed as an increasing push to saffronise the Dalit icon.

He also defended the saffron paint on a statue of Ambedkar in Badaun, saying that not all statues of the father of the Constitution have to be blue. “I have seen his statues in other colours too,” he said. A BSP leader had got the statue repainted as blue on Tuesday.

Recently, the UP government had also passed an order to add Ramji to Ambedkar’s name in all government documents and records.

The order was issued by Principal Secretary of general administration department, Jitendra Kumar, who took cognizance of the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution, in which Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar’s name is written as Dr Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar.

The move invited sharp criticism from the opposition, which questioned the timing of the order and alleged that it was a political decision. Ambedkar’s grandsons Prakash and Anand had told CNN-New18 that the UP state government’s move was “nothing but vote bank politics by the BJP”.

“BJP wants to have their own agenda before the 2019 elections. My sense is close to elections, they might try to tell the voters that Ambedkar was also a ‘Ram bhakt’,” Prakash had said.

But Katheria said there was nothing political about the decision and UP only used the name of Ambedkar as he had himself used in the primary book of Constitution as a signature.
| Edited by: Aakarshuk Sarna
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