Bengaluru, Jan 29: The Republican Party of India chief Ramdas Athawale on Sunday demanded BR Ambedkar's image on the new currency note and called for a constitutional amendment to provide reservation for economically weaker communities.
"... not only Dalit people, people from all over India are demanding photo of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar on the currency," Athawale, the Union minister for social justice and empowerment told reporters ahead of the party's two-day national convention which began on Sunday.
He said: "We are proud that Mahatma Gandhi's photo is there as it is because of his freedom movement that English people left India. ... but there is also a feeling that on some currency Babasaheb Ambedkar photo should be there."
Expressing his support for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's demonetisation move, he said it is to support the poor as Ambedkar had also advocated changing currency.
"Republican Party of India is supporting Narendra Modi's decision of demonetisation; that decision was taken by the Prime Minister because of increase in poverty, because black money is increasing. It is to support the poor people. If money comes to the government it will give more money for the development of the poor," Athawale said.
Ambedkar had also advocated changing currency after ten years when he wrote about the problem of rupee in a thesis while studying in London School of Economics, he added.
Stating that both State and Central governments should support inter-caste marriages, Athawale said those who are going in for it should be given five lakh rupees, besides jobs by the government.
Expressing his party's support for economically and socially backward sections, he said there is need for a constitutional amendment to support those who are economically backward and not getting benefits from caste based reservation.
"If there is no constitutional amendment, there is no possibility to provide reservation to these communities. When Parliament is in session, I will meet Prime Minister on this and discuss with him," he added.