New Delhi/Mumbai, Dec 6: Indian leaders paid rich tribute to Dr. Bhim Rao Ambedkar on his 52nd death anniversary on Monday. Vice President Mohammad Hamid Ansari and Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee paid floral tributes to the father of the Indian Constitution at a special function in the Parliament Complex. Several Union Ministers, leaders of political parties and Members of Parliament were among others who also offered floral tribute at the statue of Dr. Ambedkar.
The day is also observed as Mahaparinirvan Diwas. Several functions were organised in different parts of the country to mark the occasion.
In Mumbai, scores of people gathered at the Chaityabhoomi' to pay homage to him. Doctor Ambedkar's last rites took place here. Dr. Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar was an Indian jurist, scholar, Bahujan political leader and a Buddhist revivalist.
Ambedkar spent his life fighting untouchability and the Indian caste system. He is also credited for having sparked off the Dalit Buddhist movement. Ambedkar was honoured with the Bharat Ratna.
Overcoming numerous social and financial obstacles, Ambedkar became one of the first "untouchables" to obtain a college education in India. He went on to pursue higher studies in the United States and England, where he earned law degrees and multiple doctorates for his study and research in law, economics and political science.
Returning home as a famous scholar, Ambedkar practiced law for a few years before he began publishing journals that advocated political rights and social freedom for India's untouchables.