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http://roundtableindia.co.in/index.php? option=com_content&view=article&id=7325%3Aarundhati ro! tilt" toward" #andhi&catid=$2%&&temid=$%5 Arundhati'(o!'tilt"'toward"')andhi:'*ro+.',.'-.

'(atnam 'A report on the special discussion on 'Politics of Publication and Introductory
Paradoxes' held on 28th March, 2014, in University of Hyderabad S Swaroop Sirapangi Dr B R Ambedkar Students' Association (ASA), University of Hyderabad organized a s ecia! discussion over "avayana's !atest vo!ume, 'Anni#i!ation of $aste% &#e Annotated $ritica! 'dition', (#ic# a!so inc!udes an introduction by Arund#ati Roy entit!ed as '&#e Doctor and t#e Saint') &#e origina! te*t of Ambedkar's Annihilation of Caste is annotated by Anand S of "avayana and is receded by Arund#ati Roy's introduction) &#is te*t #as created a !ot of stir among t#e da!it+da!it,ba#u-an inte!!ectua!s and t#e debate #as been continuing in various forms on t#e (ays and modes of resentation of t#is vo!ume, es ecia!!y over t#e internet on Ambedkarite sites !ike Round Table India, and in socia! media forums !ike ((()facebook)com and on some ot#er 'mainstream' e!ectronic media sites too) Against t#is background, t#e resent initiative of ASA s#ou!d be understood as a sort of continuation of suc# debates) .er#a s, t#is cou!d be t#e first organized attem t to de!iberate u on t#e contents of t#is vo!ume by t#e da!it,ba#u-an inte!!ectua!s, in a s ace ot#er t#an socia! or on!ine+e!ectronic media// &#e inaugura! !aunc#es of t#is vo!ume (ere #e!d at De!#i and 0umbai and t#oug# anot#er event (as su osed to be #e!d recent!y at Hyderabad, it got cance!!ed at t#e !ast moment) 1t (as intense!y rumored t#at one of t#e rime reasons be#ind t#is cance!!ation at Hyderabad (as due to t#reats from some of t#e da!it,ba#u-an grou s to(ards t#is vo!ume's content, (#ic# is seen as negative from various vantage oints) But in due course of time, it (as roved t#at a!! suc# rumors of t#reats (ere not genuine, and (ere er#a s intentiona!!y s read by some regressive e!ements (it# vested interests, (#o (is#ed to ortray t#e da!it,ba#u-an criti2ue in a negative !ig#t) ASA at University of Hyderabad #as taken t#is initiative to(ards a constructive de!iberation u on t#e content of t#e vo!ume by inviting a fe( rominent da!it,ba#u-an inte!!ectua!s from Hyderabad itse!f) &#e forma! articu!ars of t#is s ecia! discussion as re!eased by ASA can be observed from t#e fo!!o(ing re!eased oster%

&#e first erson to o en t#e discussion (as Dr 3 4 Ratnam) He sa( t#e te*t bot# in ositive and negative s#ades, and made ob-ections to t#e negative s#ades, and a reciated some ositive as ects) His rime ob-ection+s arose from t#e com arison osite (ays// bet(een Ambedkar and 5and#i 6 by treating t#e former as a (i!d 'cactus grove' and t#e !atter as a 's#ining at#', 2uite in o He attem ted to com are bot# S Anand and Arund#ati Roy's vie(s, as e* ressed in t#e vo!ume's 'introduction' and 'conc!usion', res ective!y) He ointed out t#at in t#e conc!usion it (as mentioned t#at 'Annihilation of Caste can on!y be ossib!e (#en Ambedkar's (riting+s is taken serious!y') But, in t#e introduction, Arund#ati Roy raises t#e 2uestion% 'can caste be anni#i!ated7' &#e annotated Annihilation of Caste section is to be considered as t#e main te*t of t#e vo!ume, (#i!e Arund#ati Roy's introduction to t#e Annihilation of Caste under t#e tit!e '&#e Doctor and t#e Saint' is vie(ed as a sub,te*t) He found fundamenta! rob!em+s (it# t#e sub,te*t of Arund#ati Roy, t#oug# due to time constraints #e (as unab!e to en!ist fu!! detai!s at !engt#) He found t#at t#e sub,te*t (ritten by Roy, does not match the main text, Annihilation of Caste by Babasa#eb) Arund#ati Roy's introduction is a very 'current' te*t, dea!ing (it# very current issues suc# as t#e vio!ence across t#e country as ref!ected in t#e 3#air!an-i vio!ence against t#e Da!its, unem !oyment, t#e mono o!y over (ea!t# of t#e nation by t#e dominant castes, t#eir contro! over t#e media etc) 5iven t#at conte*t, (#en caste ervades 1ndian society Roy asks, has caste been annihilated !as it been annhilated or does it continue to be there "he tries to sa# e$en the emer%ence of &"', and its rule in states li(e )ttar 'radesh could not attempt to annihilate caste*

Reading Arund#ati Roy's introduction, he felt that it +as some+hat tilted to+ards the ,"aint,, the ,sainthood, of -andhi, +hile outri%htl# sa#in% that the ,.octor, failed* &#e sub,tit!es given to different arts of t#e introduction are a!so revea!ing, in #is vie() 8#i!e (riting on 5and#i, t#e tit!e 's#ining at#' is used, and (#en (riting on Ambedkar s#e tit!es t#e section 'cactus grove') 9urt#er, #e said, (#i!e 2uestioning 'can caste be anni#i!ated7', s#e says Ambedkar's (estern ideas are a setback) "o -andhi is more rele$ant, t#at is (#at s#e (ants to convey, #e fe!t) 8#i!e coming to t#e Adivasis and Untouc#ab!es , t#e issues of eco!ogy, big dams etc), are a!! vie(ed (it#in t#e 5and#ian frame(ork (#ereas Ambedkar's vie(s are not taken into serious consideration) 1n t#e constitution formation, Ambedkar gave a !ot of im ortance to Da!its and tribes, #e reca!!ed) He #ig#!ig#ted #o( t#e 'Saint' (#o stood against industria!ization, urbanization, modernity, etc), (as, arado*ica!!y, su orted by industria!ists ti!! #is deat#/ Ho( #e (as !ooked after by t#e industria!ists of t#e day !ike Bir!as, etc// But, on t#e ot#er #and, t#oug# Ambedkar stood for suc# t#ings genuine!y, #e (as not e*tended any atronage// 9urt#er, #e observed t#at in a (ay, t#e aut#or (Arund#ati Roy) attem ted, or tries to ro-ect t#at Ambedkar's (estern ideas ose rob!ems, (#i!e 5and#i's ideas #ave deve!o ed re!evance, in t#e contem orary 1ndian discourse// 1n #is o inion, bot# Anand and Arund#ati Roy ti!ted to(ards 5and#i: t#ey referred to Ambedkar's !imitations, (#i!e t#ey raised 5and#i) But #e fe!t t#at even t#oug# s#e did not criticise Ambedkar and even raised #im, but s#e (as carefu! in #er use of (ords, in com arison (it# 5and#i (#o (as more straig#tfor(ard in #is criticism of Ambedkar) ;n t#e (#o!e #e observed t#at t#e 'Saint#ood c#aracter of 5and#i' (as not ref!ected in t#e introduction, t#oug# it got #ig#!ig#ted in t#e tit!e of t#e vo!ume) He denounced 5and#i as !acking any saint!y c#aracter, by ointing to(ards some of #is most gruesome mistakes !ike #is o osition to Ambedkar ideo!ogica!!y, #is osition to(ards (omen, #is activities and c#aracteristic ositions in Sout# Africa , !ike #is demand for se arate access to ub!ic !aces for 1ndians in Sout# Africa (#i!e denying se arate e!etorates to t#e Da!its in 1ndia) &#ese are 2uestions t#at are not attem ted to be reso!ved in t#e introduction) &#e second erson to s#are #is vie(s (as .rof 3anc#a 1!aia#) He started #is ta!k by 2uestioning t#e audience (#et#er anyone of t#em (as for against t#is book, es ecia!!y by attem ting to en2uire , (as t#ere anyone from t#e audience (#o attem ted to rotest against t#is book, (#en it (as sc#edu!ed to be inaugurated in Hyderabad, recent!y7 B $#andras#ekar Rao, facu!ty, De artment of .o!itica! Science, University of Hyderabad interfered in t#is dia!ogue from t#e audience and observed t#at someone !ike Arund#ati Roy (as not re2uired to introduce Ambedkar and everyone kno(s about Annihilation of Caste's content by #eart// .rof 3anc#a 1!aia# initiated #is discourse on t#is issue by taking inference from $#andras#ekar's oint and observed #is vie(s from academic met#odo!ogica! vantage oints) He reco!!ected #is readings of t#e Ho!y Bib!e and <uran in different versions and annotations and fe!t t#ere is not#ing (rong in annotations and in,fact annotations (i!!

certain!y benefit a serious sc#o!ar// But, (ondered (#et#er any mis,annotation #as taken !ace to t#is vo!ume or not) 9or #im, even after !ooking at t#e socia! background of Anand (Bra#min) t#ere is not#ing (rong if #e annotated t#is te*t) But t#en, #e (ent on to ut for(ard #is ot#er met#odo!ogica! observations, !ike% a) "o introduction s#ou!d be !engt#ier t#an t#e book, b) &#e resent introduction, of t#is muc# !engt#, is not re2uired, and c) 5iving a different tit!e to t#e sub,te*t, t#e introduction, is a!so a met#odo!ogica! rob!em (i)e) &#e Doctor and t#e Saint) He found a rimary rob!ematic mismatc# bet(een t#e 'tit!e and t#e introduction' and (ent on to argue t#at t#ere is a mismatc# bet(een t#e actua! te*t of Ambedkar's 'Anni#i!ation of $aste' as annotated by Anand and Arund#ati Roy's introduction tit!ed as 't#e Doctor and t#e Saint') "o, he ad$ocated the separation of Anand,s annotations and Arundhati,s introduction) 9or #im,Arundhati,s introduction should be brou%ht out as a separate $olume, for (#ic# t#ere (i!! not be a rob!em from #is side// &#e !ast erson to address t#e audience (as senior !a(yer Bo--a &#arakam, (#o is a!so (e!! kno(n in And#ra .rades# for #is re, ub!ication and distribution of 'Anni#i!ation of $aste' at a very reasonab!e rice, !ong ago) 1n fact, Bo--a &#arakam (as a!so su cance!!ed) &#arakam observed t#at t#oug# ersons !ike Anand and Arund#ati Roy ( rimari!y referring to t#e !atter) #ave every rig#t to criticize Ambedkar and+or 5and#i, t#ey cannot do suc# a t#ing by c#oosing to (rite a ' reface' to a vo!ume !ike Annihilation of Caste// &#us, in one (ay or t#e ot#er #e (ent a!ong (it# .rof 3anc#a 1!aia#'s !ine of argument, and in fact, in t#e end, (ent on to o en!y a!ign (it# 1!aia#'s side and o ined t#at the t+o texts of Anand and Arundhati should be separated* !e raised serious ob0ections o$er the understandin% and presentation of Arundhati Ro# on Ambed(ar, Ambed(ar,s Anni#i!ation of $aste and Ambed(ar,s total en%a%ement +ith the caste discourse and re!ated 2uestions) $aste, in #is o inion cannot be understood mere!y by reading, but it s#ou!d be rimari!y e* erienced) 'rior to Ambed(ar there +ere no intellectuals +ho raised their $oice for annihilation of caste, thou%h there +ere intellectuals +ho +ere for remo$al of untouchabilit# or1and for remo$al of caste distinctions bet+een or amon% different castes 2but not for annihilation//3) "o, the uni4ueness of Ambed(ar lies in his 4uest for Anni#i!ation of $aste, +hich Arundhati failed to understand effecti$el#* He a!so took very serious e*ce tion to Anand's osture in t#is entire discourse, from t#e oint of !ack of ackno(!edgement of t#e revious versions of t#is te*t in circu!ation in various forms and in various 1ndian !anguages, etc) 8it#out suc# attem ts of ackno(!edgment, he is pro0ectin% this boo( as the first attempt to+ards introduction of Ambed(ar,s Anni#i!aton of $aste// !e obser$ed that it seems as if throu%h the publication of this $olume Ambed(ar +as sou%ht to be minimi5ed1undermined1critici5ed b# hi%hli%htin% -andhi in an undue manner* !e 2uestions, (#y 5and#i s#ou!d be broug#t into t#is discourse7 1n #is vie(, Ambedkar and+or #is Annihilation of Caste cou!d #ave been direct!y introduced (it#out any reference to 5and#i) osed to be c#airing t#e Hyderabad session of t#e book's !aunc# some days ago, (#ic# got

A!! t#e s eakers o

osed any ban on t#e book, but .rof 1!aia# and Bo--a &#arakam fe!t = 'lease also read other articles on the same issue6

t#e introduction s#ou!d be se arated from t#e book)

Between Savior and Seller: Critiquing Preface Politics% by Praveena Thaali A Glass Menagerie for the BahujansAnnihilation of Caste and Gandhi s !ards: by "a#es Michael and A$sha% Patha$ Stig#ati&ing 'alits( )ro# the !adas to the !e*% by +ilesh ,u#ar !ithout Arundhati -o% and Gandhi( the *oo$ had its own value % Bojja Thara$a# Caste in the +a#e of Christ: An angr% note on the S%rian Christian Caste% by +idhin Sho*hana The +ot.So./nti#ate 0ne#%: The 1oss and 0rasure of the Self 2nder Casteis# % by Gee /#aan Se##alar )launting no*le intentions( nurturing caste privileges % by Asha ,owtal The 3uestion of )ree Speech% by 4ai*hav !asni$ Arundhati -o% replies to 'alit Ca#era An 5pen 1etter to Ms6 Arundhati -o%% by 'alit Ca#era 4edic Chants for the 78st Centur% Arundhati -o% s /ntroduction to A#*ed$ar: /nside one Misog%nistic 9 :enopho*ic 'alit s #ind% by Anoop ,u#ar The "udge( the "ur% and the Goddess% by A$sha% Patha$ -esisting a #essiah% by Anoop ,u#ar An /ntroduction to Anoop ,u#ar s ;Misog%nistic and :enopho*ic -ants; % by 4ina% Bhat === S Swaroop Sirapangi is a 'h*.*, 'olitical "cience Research "cholar at )ni$ersit# of !#derabad* 7mail I.6 ssanthiswaroop@hotmail.com