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Indian History

Mahaparinirvan Diwas

  • 07 Dec 2022
  • 6 min read

For Prelims: Mahaparinirvan Diwas, Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar, Buddhism, Round Table Conferences

For Mains: Contributions of Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar to the Indian Society

Why in News?

Recently, the Prime Minister paid homage to Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar on Mahaparinirvan Diwas and recalled his exemplary service to our nation.

What is Mahaparinirvan Diwas?

  • Parinirvana, regarded as one of the major principles as well as goals of Buddhism, is a Sanskrit term which means release or freedom after death.
    • As per the Buddhist text Mahaparinibbana Sutta, the death of Lord Buddha at the age of 80 is considered as the original Mahaparinirvan.
  • 6th December is observed to commemorate the unfathomable contribution to society given by Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar and his achievements. Owing to Ambedkar’s status as a Buddhist leader, his death anniversary is referred to as Mahaparinirvan Diwas.

Who was Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar?

  • About:
    • Babasaheb Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar was a social reformer, jurist, economist, author, polyglot (knowing or using several languages) orator, a scholar, and thinker of comparative religions.
  • Birth:
    • He was born in 1891 in Mhow, Central Province (now Madhya Pradesh).
  • Brief Profile:
    • He is known as the Father of the Indian Constitution and was India's first Law Minister.
    • He was the Chairman of the Drafting Committee for the new Constitution.
    • He was a well-known statesman who fought for the rights of the Dalits and other socially backward classes.
  • Contributions:
    • He led the Mahad Satyagraha in March 1927 against Hindus who were opposing the decision of the Municipal Board.
      • In 1926, the Municipal Board of Mahad (Maharashtra) passed an order to throw open the tank to all communities. Earlier, the untouchables were not allowed to use water from the Mahad tank.
    • He participated in all three Round Table Conferences.
    • In 1932, Dr. Ambedkar signed the Poona pact with Mahatma Gandhi, which abandoned the idea of separate electorates for the depressed classes (Communal Award).
      • However, the seats reserved for the depressed classes were increased from 71 to 147 in provincial legislatures and to 18% of the total in the Central Legislature.
    • His ideas before the Hilton Young Commission served as the foundation of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
  • Election and Designation:
    • In 1937, he was elected to the Bombay Legislative Assembly as a legislator (MLA).
    • He was appointed to the Executive Council of Viceroy as a Labour member in 1942.
    • In 1947, Dr. Ambedkar accepted PM Nehru's invitation to become Minister of Law in the first Cabinet of independent India.
  • Shift to Buddhism:
    • He resigned from the cabinet in 1951, over differences on the Hindu Code Bill.
    • He converted to Buddhism in 1956.
    • He was awarded India’s highest civilian honour the Bharat Ratna in 1990.
  • Important Works:
    • Journals:
      • Mooknayak (1920)
      • Bahishkrit Bharat (1927)
      • Samatha (1929)
      • Janata (1930)
    • Books:
      • Annihilation of Caste
      • Buddha or Karl Marx
      • The Untouchable: Who are They and Why They Have Become Untouchables
      • Buddha and His Dhamma
      • The Rise and Fall of Hindu Women
    • Organisations:
      • Bahishkrit Hitkarini Sabha (1923)
      • Independent Labor Party (1936)
      • Scheduled Castes Federation (1942)
  • Death:
    • He died on 6th December 1956.
      • Chaitya Bhoomi is a memorial to B R Ambedkar, located in Mumbai.
  • Relevance of Ambedkar in Present Times:
    • Caste-based inequality in India still persists. While Dalits have acquired a political identity through reservation and forming their own political parties, they lack behind in social dimensions (health and education) and economic dimension.
    • There has been a rise of communal polarization and communalization of politics. It is necessary that Ambedkar's vision of constitutional morality must supersede religious morality to avoid permanent damage to the Indian Constitution.

UPSC Civil Services Examination, Previous Year Questions (PYQs)


Q. Which of the following parties were established by Dr. B. R. Ambedkar? (2012)

  1. The Peasants and Workers Party of India
  2. All India Scheduled Castes Federation
  3. The Independent Labour Party

Select the correct answer using the codes given below:

(a) 1 and 2 only
(b) 2 and 3 only
(c) 1 and 3 only
(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans: (b)


  • The Peasants and Workers Party of India was formed by Keshavrao Jedhe of Pune, Shankarrao More and others in 1947. Hence, 1 is not correct.
  • All India Scheduled Castes Association was established by B. R. Ambedkar in 1942 and this party participated in general elections in 1946. Hence, 2 is correct.
  • Independent Labour Party (ILP) was also formed by B. R. Ambedkar in 1936, which participated in the provincial elections of Bombay. Hence, 3 is correct.
  • Therefore, option B is the correct answer.


Q. Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, despite having divergent approaches and strategies, had a common goal of amelioration of the downtrodden. Elucidate. (2015)

Source: PIB

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