Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 6 July 2017 paid his tributes to veteran leader Babu Jagjivan Ram on his death anniversary, hailing him as a champion of the deprived masses.
Jagjivan Ram popularly known as Babuji was an Indian independence activist and politician from Bihar, who passed away on 6 July 1986."Tributes to Babu Jagjivan Ram on his Punya Tithi. We will always remember his contribution towards empowerment of the poor and marginalised," Modi tweeted.
About Jagjivan Ram
• Born on 5 April 1908, Babu Jagjivan Ram, popularly known as Babuji, was a Congress leader and a Dalit icon. He is also the father of Meira Kumar, the opposition’s candidate for the Presidential elections.
• He joined the Congress in 1937. In 1946, he became the labour minister, the youngest member in Nehru’s interim government, the first cabinet of India.
• He was also a member of the Constituent Assembly of India.
• He went on to serve as a minister with various portfolios for more than four decades as a member of the Indian National Congress (INC).
• He served as the Defence Minister of India during the Indo-Pak war of 1971, which resulted in the creation of Bangladesh.
• He held several other significant portfolios as well including railways, communications, food, agriculture and irrigation.
• When the Congress split in 1969, he joined Indira Gandhi’s faction and even supported her during the emergency from 1975 to 1977.
• He, however, quit the party in 1977 and joined the Janta Party alliance.
• Then he went on to become the first and only Dalit Deputy Prime Minister of India in the first non-Congress government from 1977 to 1979 and then in 1980 he formed Congress (J).
• He is greatly remembered for the important role he played in the pursuit of social justice. He dedicated his entire life for the upliftment of the untouchables.
• He is also lauded for his contribution to the Green Revolution in India and modernising Indian agriculture, during his two tenures as Union Agriculture Minister.
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