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Dalit Panthers:
Under the leadership of Mr. Ramdas Athawle Bartiya Dalit Panther was formed. This organisation has fought against injustic to dalits. The biggest achivement was Marathwada Vidyapeeth Namantaar. This was inspired by Black Panther Party, a revolutionary movement amongst African - Americans, which emerged in the United States and functioned from 1966-1982. The name of the organization was borrowed from the 'Black Panther' Movement of the USA. They called themselves "Panthers" because they were supposed to fight for their rights like panthers, and not get suppressed by the strength and might of their oppressors.

The US Black Panther Party always acknowledged and supported the Dalit Panther Party through the US Black Panther Newspaper which circulated weekly throughout the world from 1967-1980.
 
The term “Dalit”…
The term “Dalit” has different meanings for different people. The most common use of the term is to define people who were once known as “untouchables”, separated from the rest of society by the caste system.
 
A past passive participle of the Sanskrit root dal that means to crack or split, the word Dalit is today common across most Indian languages, meaning poor and oppressed people. As it refers to those who have been broken, ground down by those above them in a deliberate way, there is also clearly an inherent denial of pollution, karma and justified caste hierarchy to the word itself. Though use of the term Dalit in public discourse is of relatively recent origin - the 1960s - it is supposed to have been used first by Jyotirao Phule (1827-1890) in his attempt to work for dalituthan, that is, the uplifting of the exploited sections of society. While Dr. Ambedkar did not popularize the word Dalit, his philosophy has remained a key source in its emergence and popularity. Marathi literary figures and neo-Buddhists began to use the word in their writings and contributed to the literary initiatives in replacing Harijan (man of God) and achchuta (untouchable) with Dalit, in the 1970s. They expressed their anger, protest and aspiration through this new word, rejecting the Hindu caste system and objecting to Gandhi’s belief that caste Hindus’ “charitable spirit” would be enough to overcome Untouchability.
 
While the word “Dalit” stems from opposition to terms bestowed upon Dalits by the non-Dalits - terms that legitimised their discrimination and deprivation - it has today essentially emerged as a political category. Dalits in legal parlance are called Scheduled Castes (SCs), and are identified as such by the President of India under Article 341 of the Constitution.
 
This constitutional identity, however, is exclusive and fails to capture the true picture. Dalits who have converted from Hinduism to another religion no longer qualify as SCs, although their status in society often remains the same. Moreover, Dalit movements in contemporary India are not uniform and each articulates a particular identity, be they Christian Dalits, Neo-Buddhists or Muslim Dalits. Hence, Dalit should not be seen as a term just describing a caste community. Rather, it should be viewed as a symbol of change and liberation, as a progressive ideology, helping the Dalit movement to achieve its end results. Increasingly used as a suffix, Dalit is a part of the identity of a person that holds certain values—those pertaining to equality and humanism.
 
Ambedkar's conversion
After publishing a series of books and articles arguing that Buddhism was the only way for the Untouchables to gain equality, Ambedkar publicly converted on 14 October 1956, at Deekshabhoomi, Nagpur. He took the three refuges and the Five Precepts from a Buddhist monk, Bhadant U Chandramani, in the traditional manner, and in his turn administered them to the 600,000 of his followers who were present. The conversion ceremony was attended by Medharthi, his main disciple Bhoj Dev Mudit, and Mahastvir Bodhanand's Sri Lankan successor, Bhante Pragyanand. Ambedkar would die less than two months later, just after finishing his definitive work on Buddhism.
 
Many Dalits employ the term "Ambedkar(ite) Buddhism" to designate the Buddhist movement, which started with Ambedkar's conversion. Many converted people call themselves "-Bauddha" i.e. Buddhists.
 
 
 
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