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Spread vision of Ambedkar among the masses: PM to BJP MPs

New Delhi: Claiming that no previous government had given Dalit icon BR Ambedkar so much respect as his, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday asked party MPs to spread his vision and principles among the masses.

In his address to the Parliamentary party, Modi also spoke about the upcoming birth anniversaries of BJP stalwart Atal Bihari Vajpayee and spiritual leader Swami Viveknanda, asking members to start projects which they deem fit on the former prime minister’s birth day on December 25.

With BJP assiduously wooing Dalits, Modi said his government had given “maximum respect” to Ambedkar as he spoke about the Centre organising a number of events related to Ambedkar, including the announcement of November 26 as the ‘Constitution Day’ and the launch of special coins to honour him.

Party sources said he told the MPs that Ambedkar was so far projected as a Dalit icon and for his role in the making of the Constitution but his government had worked to highlight various other facets of him, including his economic vision.

Different ministries have come out with literature to highlight his contributions.

He also spoke about the year-long celebrations being organised by the government marking his 125th birth anniversary.

Noting that the birth anniversary of Vivekananda, whom the prime minister has often referred to as an inspiration to him, is observed as the ‘National Youth Day’, he asked the party leaders to “work overtime” to spread his vision and connect youths with BJP, sources said.

Modi also asked the MPs to start some welfare project in their constituency on Vajpayee’s birth anniversary.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu also addressed the MPs and asked them to be present in Parliament in full force for the passage of pending bills.

Sources said he spoke about the legislative agenda of both the Houses this week, which includes the GST Bill listed in Rajya Sabha. He also said that three bills were passed last week.