Agra gears up for Ambedkar Jayanti

Updated: Apr 14, 2011, 09:18 AM IST

Agra: Preparations are in place for the three-day Ambedkar Jayanti celebrations beginning Thursday in Agra, often described as the Dalit capital of north India.

With a population of more than three lakh Dalits, mostly engaged in the leather shoe making industry, Ambedkar Jayanti is a grand event in the Taj city.

The focus of this year`s celebration is the Bheem Nagri that has come up at the Ram Lila ground overlooking the Agra Fort. The model this year is inspired by emperor Ashoka`s majestic palace in Buddhist style, built by trained craftsmen specially brought from West Bengal.

Organising committee secretary Bharat Singh said the state government agencies had identified 18 Dalit localities for development works in the Bheem Nagri area, populated by one lakh people. This year, the state government has earmarked Rs.70 crore for development of the area.

Ambedkar Jayanti marks the birthday of Dalit icon B.R. Ambedkar, also known as the Father of Indian constitution.