Two-year-old Roshan Kharat might not know about Dr BR Ambedkar and his achievements. But, on Tuesday, he stood patiently with his grandmother in the queue waiting his turn to pay homage to the Dalit leader at Chaityabhoomi in Dadar.
“Roshan must know about his roots and about Babasaheb from this age, else his life will be a mess,” said his grandmother who came from Worli.
The Kharats were among the lakhs of Dalits who converged at Chaityabhoomi to pay homage to Ambedkar - a revolutionary, a rebel and the man who wrote Independent India’s constitution.
Unmindful of the heat and humidity, government servants, doctors, lawyers, farmers, landless labourers, unemployed youth and children stood in a disciplined queue with flowers and garlands to offer to their “Baba” on his 55th Mahaparinirvan Din.
“My son brought me here because I could not come alone. I don’t care how long it might take for my turn to pay respects at Chaityabhoomi, I will wait,” said Parubai Gajbhiye, 78, who came from Ahmednagar, with her son, daughter-in-law and four-year-old granddaughter. “We cannot miss this day,” she said.
Besides Maharashtra, Ambedkar followers came from Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh.
There was free food, drinking water and medical camps for the visitors.
Nanded resident Kushal Mukane, 30, was excited. It was his first time at Chaityabhoomi. “I am thrilled to see so many people come her for one cause. No one has brought them here or arranged for their accommodation. Just imagine the power behind the name, Ambedkar. He still rules,” he said.