Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar (14 April 1891 – 6 December 1956), venerated as Babasaheb, was an Indian jurist, economist, politician, and social reformer. He was British India’s Minister of Labour in Viceroy’s Executive Council, Chairman of the Constituent Drafting committee, independent India’s first Minister of Law and Justice, and considered the chief architect of the Constitution of India.
In 1990, the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, was posthumously conferred upon Ambedkar.
Dr. Ambedkar Foundation, Government of India, released Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar’s books in Hindi. Now the Original volumes have been divided into a total of 40 volumes. But Sadly, These Volumes were not available in Audio Format, which was why many Students of our Visually Impaired Community have not been able to read Ambedkar’s books! But We at Vargshikshak – Let’s Record gave our best to give Voice to all the writings of Ambedkar Volumes.
The is indeed a huge project wherein we have SUCCESSFULLY recorded these 40 volumes. [7 JUNE 2022] We heartily want to thank each and every volunteer who has put his/her heart and soul into recording these books and without whose support and dedicated service reaching this stage would not have been possible. Our volunteers mean our Team Members are the biggest assets of Vargshikshak and we value their time and efforts and wish to be associated with them for a very very long time.
Now dear Readers, In this Blog you will be reading the Experiences/Learnings of the Team members and Volunteers from the Project of recording Ambedkar books!
Hello everyone! This is Deepalakshmi, storyteller, and writer associated with R.E.A.D Club. (E-mail : email@example.com) I have penned down my experience of working on this incredible project of recording Dr. Ambedkar’s books (his speeches and writings) with our amazing volunteers for our dear friend Raam Singh, a Ph.D. student at JNU, Delhi.
It was just another day of sharing the drive link of an audiobook on our ‘Vargshikshak – Let’s Record’ WhatsApp group, sometime in February 2021. I had just shared the recordings of a book -M. A Hindi First Semester- recorded by me and a couple of our volunteers for Miss. Monica, another visually-challenged student from Delhi University.
Appreciating our work, Mr.Raam Singh, who is pursuing a Ph.D. in East Asian Studies at JNU, posted a requirement asking us to record a few of Dr.Ambedkar’s books in Hindi for him. I readily agreed since we have a wonderful team of volunteers and asked him to send the PDFs of the same, assuming that there would be two or three books of a hundred pages at the most. I am sure that not only I but everyone was completely flabbergasted after he began sending different volumes of the Ambedkar book. He sent around 21 volumes, which gave me the shock of my life. I wondered how a small bunch of volunteers was going to record 21 volumes. The content to cover was vast as some volumes had 500+ pages. The language used was also not easy to read. There were many difficult terminologies, tables, and charts in the books.
But Like an angel, Manisha Arora (Founder of KKK) came to our rescue, instilling a lot of confidence in us by saying that we would record them one by one even though it would take considerable time. I immediately asked Vishal P. S. Palve, the captain of our ‘Vargshikshak –Let’s Record’ ship, if we could collaborate with another recording team in Kerala called ‘Hidden Voices.’ He agreed, and we entrusted them with the responsibility of recording the first 10 volumes. Devi Krishna (Founder of Hidden Voices) Successfully completed the recordings of the first ten Volumes by taking the help of their kind volunteers. Manisha took over the responsibility of breaking up the PDFs of volumes 11 to 21 into sections that were to be allotted to the volunteers. I began coordinating with them, and thus began our mission to record volumes 11 to 21 in just six months. Once we finished 21 volumes, we interacted online with online interaction involving our volunteers and Mr. Raam Singh.
Just when we thought we had reached our goal, Manisha Ma’am gave us a jolt saying that there was an update on the Velivada website for recording another 19 volumes i.e volumes 22-40, of which Mr. Raam Singh was unaware. On inquiry, Mr.Singh told us that he would definitely need the recordings of those additional volumes since he felt it would be very helpful to him in his Ph.D. studies and also it would be helpful for all the VI Students of our Country. It was an enormous task but we had already learned how to manage our work.
I extend a big thanks to all the volunteers who came forward to help us, without whom this MEGA (BHIM) PROJECT would not have been possible. Volunteers from Kerala, Maharashtra, U.P, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Gujarat, Canada, and the United States,.Etc. joined hands to complete this recording assignment.
A few volumes were recorded by individual volunteers, which is quite commendable. Their names are Nishtha Ma’am, Kamala Mulani Ma’am, Sakshy Rai, Monika, Meena Ma’am, and Myself. Some bigger volumes were divided into sections by Manisha Ma’am, and a team was formed for each volume.
Manisha and I had the experience of dividing the books into sections, recording a few books, editing audios, and coordinating with the volunteers to make sure everything is done systematically. Manisha arranged every volume on the drive in an organized manner. Hats off to her! I learned a lot working by her side. And of course, Reading Dr.Ambedkar’s books have given me an insight into the different challenges of the Pre-Independence and Post-Independence eras and the dynamism with which Dr.Ambedkar suggested solutions for several issues. I have been a part of the recording and editing of volumes 11, 12, 15, 18, 23, 30, and 35. Recording these volumes is indeed a humongous success for Vargshikshak Team.
Click Here To Get the Audiobooks of all 40 Volumes of BASW (Babasaheb Ambedkar Writings and Speeches)
Dear readers, below we have added (Linked) the thoughts and experiences of our team members, please take a moment to read them!
RAM SINGH (Phd Student at JNU, Delhi):
RAM SINGH (Phd Student at JNU, Delhi):
I got to know about the Let’s Record project through social media. The initiative started during the COVID period. The amazing concept behind the project has really attracted me and influenced me. As Vishal said, “Our aim is to study at home and record the same to reach many with our voices So that we can help the visually impaired community to study well and grow intellectually.”
While analyzing the dedication, enthusiasm, and hardships of the volunteers, I requested them to record all volumes of Dr. B R Ambedkar in Hindi. And Without any hesitation, my request has been accepted. It is one of my dream project to reach with the ideas of Ambedkar. The best part of the project is that not only young people but working people within and outside India are also associated with the same. Recording 40 volumes is a humongous task. And the passion of all the volunteers must be applauded.
I also got to know many experiences of the readers who recorded the Dr. B R Ambedkar books. I feel it is quite possible that many of the negative counter perceptions and misconceptions about Babasaheb would have been cleared for some people and they would have been amazed to read the healthy discussions, and conferences held on the various topics, especially the constitution. With this meaningful initiative, we will definitely be able to fulfill the dream of Babasaheb to Organise the various systems in our country.
Highest regards to all the volunteers while supporting all of us to achieve our goals of studying and competing in society with equal rights and participation. Thanks from the bottom of my heart to the whole team of vargshikshak.
We are definitely happy to have been able to do our bit for our visually impaired friends but we have not yet achieved our goal! We aim for One Audio Book Platform for All Visually Impaired.
We have successfully received 22,000+ Signatures for our Petition which we had posted on Change.org. But we are Still far from our goal. It would be great if we all join hands together to make a representation to our government to make a single Mobile Application.
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