Republican Party of India

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Republican Party of India
Founder Baba Saheb Dr B R Ambedkar
Founded 30 September 1956
Preceded by Scheduled Castes Federation
International affiliation None
Colours Blue

The Republican Party of India (RPI) is a political party in India.[1] It has its roots in the Scheduled Castes Federation led by Dr. B. R. Ambedkar. The 'Training School for Entrance to Politics' was established by Dr. Ambedkar in 1956 which was to serve as an entry point to the Republican Party of India (RPI).[2] The first batch of the school consisted of 15 students. Its first batch turned out to be last batch as the school was closed after Dr. Ambedkar's demise in 1956.


During the recent years RPI suffered severe internal strife.[3] Several distinct parties claim the name of RPI.[4] There are more than 50 factions of RPI. In 2009, all factions of RPI except Prakash Ambedkar's Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh reunited to form a united "Republican Party of India (United)". Later, Republican Party of India (Gavai) and Republican Party of India (A) led by Ramdas Athawale split again from the united party. Splinter groups of RPI include:

Scheduled Castes Federation

Scheduled Castes Federation (SCF) was an organisation in India founded by B. R. Ambedkar in 1942 to campaign for the rights of the Dalit community. An executive body of All India SCF was elected in the convention. Rao Bahadur N. Sivaraj from Madras Sate was elected as President and P.N.Rajbhoj from Bombay State was elected as general secretary.[8]

Ambedkar had founded the Depressed Classes Federation (DCF) in 1930 and the Independent Labour Party (ILP) in 1935. Sources vary regarding which of these two bodies was succeeded by the SCF.[9] SCF later evolved into the Republican Party of India.

There was also a party called SCF in Pakistan after Partition. Ramnarayan Rawat stated that the SCF "created the space for an alternative to Congress-type 'nationalist' politics in post- 1947 Uttar Pradesh".[10]

Independent Labour Party

Independent Labour Party (ILP) was an Indian political organisation formed under the leadership of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar in 15 August 1936 against the brahmanical and capitalist structures in the society. ILP argued for Indian labour class while also stressing on the nature of caste structures and need for its annihilation.[11]

The formation of ILP was not welcomed or supported by the communist leaders arguing that this will lead to a split in the working-class votes. Ambedkar replied that communist leaders were working for the rights for the worker but not for the human rights of Dalit workers.[12] In his work Annihilation of Caste, Ambedkar put forth the idea that caste is not merely the 'division of labour' but 'division of labourers' based upon graded inequality.[13]

In the 1937 Provincial elections conducted, in accordance with the Government of India Act 1935, ILP secured a total of 14 seats out of 17 in which they contested. This included 11 reserved (out of 13) and 3 general seats (out of 4).[13]

In 1938 ILP with the support of Congress Socialist Party organised a march of 20,000 tenants from the Konkan region to Bombay, marked the largest pre-independence peasant mobilisation in the region. In same year it also joined with Communists for organising Bombay textile labourers in the issue of a bill presented in the assembly to control the strikes by the labourers. ILP opposed the bill from within the Bombay Legislative Assembly and Ambedkar exposed the anti-labour nature of the bill and unsound reasons presented in the bill along with it he supported the labourers right to strike.[12]

See also


  1. ^ "In Ambedkar's state, Dalit parties stare at oblivion". dna. 1 October 2014. Retrieved 5 September 2015. 
  2. ^ "JNU scholars will revive Dr. Ambedkar's Political School". The Hindu. Retrieved 31 August 2016. 
  3. ^ "Poke Me: Has Indian politics failed BR Ambedkar?". timesofindia-economictimes. 16 April 2015. Retrieved 5 September 2015. 
  4. ^ TNN (7 December 2014). "RPI factions clash on Ambedkar death anniversary". The Times of India. Retrieved 5 September 2015. 
  5. ^ "Veteran Republican Party of India leader R. S. Gavai no more". mid-day. 30 October 1929. Retrieved 5 September 2015. 
  6. ^ "The two Ambedkarite parties, the Republican Party of India led by Ramdas Athawale and the Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh led by Prakash Ambedkar". 
  7. ^ "NRP". Retrieved 2017-02-25. 
  8. ^ "Dr.Ambedkar and All India Scheduled Castes Federation". Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  9. ^ Keane, David (2007). "Why the Hindu Caste System Presents a New Challenge for Human Rights". In Rehman, Javaid; Breau, Susan. Religion, Human Rights and International Law: A Critical Examination of Islamic State Practices. BRILL. p. 283. ISBN 978-9-04742-087-3. 
  10. ^ Rajan, Nalini (1974). Practising journalism: values, constraints, implications. 
  11. ^ Mendelsohn, Olive; Vicziany, Marik (1998). The Untouchables: Subordination, Poverty and the State in Modern India. Contemporary South Asia. 4. Cambridge University Press. p. 115. ISBN 0521556716. 
  12. ^ a b Cite error: The named reference Singh was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  13. ^ a b Jaffrelot, Christophe (2003). India's Silent Revolution: The Rise of the Lower Castes in North India. C. Hurst & Co. Publishers. pp. 103–104. ISBN 1850653984. 
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