Secondary Education Minister Kolusu Parthasarathi paid homage to former Deputy Prime Minister Babu Jagjivan Ram on his 105 birth anniversary, here on Thursday.

The Minister garlanded the bronze statue of Jagjivan Ram at a programme organised by the Social Welfare Department at Ramvarappadu ring here. The people never forget services of veteran freedom fighter and his efforts to eradicate the practice of untouchability in the country.

Jagjivan Ram always strived for social change, social justice and economic equality in the society. Every individual in the country needs to go all out to accomplish the dreams and goals of Jagjivan Ram, he said.

The minister, referring to State Government initiatives to uplift the dalits, said that it was committed to the welfare of the downtrodden. The Government allocated Rs.2,677 crore for social welfare and Rs.3,014 crore for backward classes welfare.

With a view to providing education to all, the Government was giving post matric, pre-matric scholarships to the students. A sub-plan of Rs.4,000 crore was chalked out to provide infrastructural facilities to the dalits in the State, he said.

Vijayawada (East) MLA Yalamanchili Ravi said that Jagjivan Ram dedicated his life to the nation. Entire nation was indebted to Jagjivan Ram for his four decade invaluable services, he said.

Vijayawada (Central) MLA Malladi Vishnu said that brought laurels to all the posts he held during his lifetime. Former minister Devineni Rajasekhar, Vijayawada RDO S. Venkat Rao, district social welfare officer K. Dhanunjaya Rao, youth welfare officer Velaga Joshi, Urban Tehsildar J. Srinivas, dalit leaders P.Y. Ratnam, M. Prabhakar Rao, Vakala Adam, Jawahar Kennedy, Y.Kishore, Seelam Ranga Rao, K. Elia, G. Pichaiah, B.D. Kripanandam and others were present.

Rich tributes

The city paid rich tributes to veteran freedom fighter and former Deputy Prime Minister Babu Jagjivan Ram on his 105th birth anniversary .

A host of programmes were organised across the city to celebrate veteran leader's birth anniversary.

The Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leaders garlanded his portrait at the party office and recalled his services to the nation.

TDP Urban president Vallabhaneni Vamsi, and State general secretary Bonda Umamaheswara Rao said that Jagjivan Ram as a Labour minister ensured implementation of 8-hour work rule in the country. He was also instrumental in inserting Article 17 (abolition of untouchability) in Indian Constitution, they said.

TDP urban general secretary Songa Ravindra Varma, official spokesperson Yerneni Veda Vyas, ex-corporators Gogula Ramana Rao and others were present.

At another programme organised at Vijayawada (West) MLA Velampalli Srinivas Rao's office in One Town, former deputy mayor S.P. Gritton, ex-corporators Mahadev Appaji, Mesala Rajeswara Rao, Abdul Qader and others garlanded the photo of Jagjivan Ram.

They recalled that Jagjivan Ram was instrumental in founding of the All India Depressed Classes League', an organisation dedicated to attaining equality for untouchables in 1935 and was elected to Bihar Legislative Assembly in 1937.

As a defence minister, he took bold decisions and was instrumental for victory of the country in Indo-Pak war, they said.

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