In the heart of our national capital, it is a fitting tribute to Dr. Ambedkar. This occasion is even more special as I had the opportunity to lay the foundation stone for this centre. He said people of the country were indebted to Dr Ambedkar for giving a new direction to the country.
Without taking any names, Modi said a particular "family" wanted to erase Ambedkar's role but the architect of the Indian constitution has remained influential.
He added that the five pilgrimage spots - in Delhi, Mumbai, Nagpur, Mhow and London - were like homage from the present generation. He said the centre would function as a think-tank for inclusive growth, and related socio-economic matters.
Quoting from Dr. Ambedkar's address to the Constituent Assembly in December 1946, the Prime Minister said despite his struggles, Dr. Ambedkar had an inspirational vision for the nation to overcome its problems.
"We had said that in one year we will build toilets for girls in all government schools, we have already constructed over 4 lakh such facilities. We don't want to make political use of it", Rahul Gandhi had said. Initiatives taken by the Government include Jan Dhan Yojana, Ujjwala Yojana, Swachh Bharat Mission, insurance schemes, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana and the recently launched Saubhagya Yojana.
"See this centre itself (Dr. Ambedkar International Centre), it was made a decision to build it in 1992, but nothing happened for 23 years".
"You will be surprised to know that some 60 per cent beneficiaries of the government's self-employment loan scheme that transformed the meaning of jobs in the country are Dalits, backwards and tribals". The home state of the Prime Minister has been witness to massive protests by Dalits against the BJP since a year ago when two Dalit men were mercilessly flogged in Gujarat's Una by cow vigilantes on the suspicion that they had slaughtered cows.
The prime minister also unveiled the statue of Dr B.R. Ambedkar in the lawns and another statue of Dr Ambedkar in the atrium of the Centre in Janpath.