Ambedkar’s Family

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Ambedkar’s grandfather Maloji Sakpal , a retired military man
Ambedkar’s father Subhedar Ramiji Sakpal his sister Mirabai
Ramiji wife Bhimabai came from Murbadkars,an untoucable Hindu rich-family
(Murbad is a village in Thana distict of Bombay)
Out of 14 children,only Three sons – Balaram, Anandrao and Bhimrao – and two daughters – Manjula and Tulasa survived
Full Name : Bhimrao Ramji Ambavadekar
Sakpal family name Ambedkar drew his surname Ambavadekar from his native village Ambavade
Then changed it to Ambedkar wife Ramabai

The wedlock of this ideal couple was blessed with four sons and one daughter, Out of his four sons namely, Ramesh, Gangadhar, yashwant and Rajratna and one daughter Indu only one son namely Yashwant Ambedkar (Father of Sh Parkash Abmedkar MP) survived, others died mostly in fancy. This gave the couple great pains and sorrows. On the death of his youngest son Rajratan on Ist July 1926, Dr Ambedkar wrote on 16th August to one of his friends, “There is no use pretending that I and my wife have recovered from the shock of our Son’s death and I don’t think that we ever shall. – – – – – – – with the loss of our kids the salt of our life is gone – – – – “ After a long period of mourning & on the insistence of his well wishers, Dr Ambedkar settled down on the work for emancipation of down trodden but Ramabhai Continued in grief. This acted upon here health badly and she fell gravely ill. She being highly religious even during illness, she continued observing fasts on Saturdays, took only water and black gram, worshipped God for His blessing on her husband. Her thoughts, mind and eyes were devoted to the service of her Sahib. At this she would say,’Sahib what is there in having so many Degrees, cannot we live happily with lesser education perhaps she did not know that the emancipation of million of untouchables was possible only with knowledge of order which Dr Ambedkar acquired before plunging into the war to breake the age old chains of slavery of his brethren.

Ambedkar with his family members. From left, son Yashwant, wife Ramabai, and brother's wife Laxmibai. Source

Ambedkar with his family members. From left, son Yashwant, wife Ramabai, and brother’s wife Laxmibai. Image Source :  Frontline

On Ramabhai’s insistence and life long Dr Ambedkar took Ramabhai to Pandharpur for pilgrimage of Bithal Ji Maharaj, in whom she had lot of faith. But being untouchables they were not allowed to go near the temple, so they had to stand at a distance from the temple idol to offer prayers. It irritated the self-respecting Dr Ambedkar and he said “What of that Pandherpur, which prevents its devotees from seeing the image of God, by our own virtuous life, selfless service and spotless sacrifice in the cause of downtrodden humanity, we shall create another Pandharpur. Another Pandharpur ! He kept his promise by leaving Hindu religion and embracing Buddhism and re-establishing Buddha in His motherland after centuries. Illness at last over power the weak body physique of Rama Bai Ambedkar. She was even taken to Dharwal Bai Dr.Ambedkar for change, but this to did not help in improving her health. No medicine could give her relief and at last on 27th May 1935 unfortunate happen. She passed away at her residence.

Thus came the end of the nobility of mind and purity of heart. But fortunately Dr Ambedkar was by the side of her death bed. About 10,000 people rich and poor, educated and illiterate, important and common attended here funeral procession. Her son Yashwant Ambedkar preformed all Hindus ritees at the bidding of a Maha priest Sambhoo More, who was Baba Sahib’s colleague since their school days. After the death of Ramabhai, Baba Sahib was a completely broken person. Over a week he kept weeping like a child and it was difficult to console him. He put on a dress of a hermit and got his head tonsured. The saintly saffron robe indicated a hermit with world negating attitude. On the repeated requests & advice of his trusted friend and well – wishers he again took in his hand the oar to sail across his suffering fellowmen and to cut their age old chains of slavery.

Did Ambedkar love Francis (Fritzgerald Francis) ?

Ambedkar had publicly acknowledged Frances. One of his most serious works, What Congress and Gandhi Have Done to the Untouchables (1945), a trenchant critique of Gandhi and the Congress, is prefaced by a long dedication which ends: “To F., In Thy Presence is the Fullness of Joy.” The second acknowledgement comes in Khairmode’s multi-volume biography.

What Ambedkar biographers know already is that Frances worked at the House of Commons and the two met at the British Museum in 1920. In July 1920, he left for London with a loan from Shahu Maharaj to complete his studies. According to his biographer Dhananjay Keer, Ambedkar had to go to work with little food; “the keeper of the boarding house was a harsh and terrible lady”. He moved from this to another boarding house, apparently that of Frances or her mother. After Ambedkar’s return to India, Frances began corresponding with him since 1923, addressing him often as ‘My darling Bhim’. She was instrumental in shipping a lot of books to Ambedkar and in sourcing material from the India Office library.

Dr. Ambedkar with family of some of his associatesWhat is evident from a letter published in Khairmode’s biography is that Ambedkar had suppressed his marriage to Ramabai from Frances. In 1905, Ambedkar, then 14, was married to nine-year-old Ramabai (who died in May 1935). Expressing concern over Ambedkar overworking himself, Frances wrote on March 11, 1925: “It is not as if you had a wife and family depending on you.” Ambedkar chose to make this letter public in his own lifetime.

Having declared in 1936 that he was born a Hindu but shall not die one, Ambedkar had faced bitter criticism from the pro-Congress press of the time. There were even newsreports in January 1937 that Ambedkar was to return from England having “secretly married an English widow”. Ambedkar, of course, never married Frances, who died in 1945.

“Oh! If I tell you all of this, will you write it in my biography? It doesn’t matter to me at all, but our people’s moral ideas are strange (vichitra). If some person either as a child or youth should make a mistake, then he is understood to be ‘fallen’ throughout his life. In Europe and America it’s not like that. Every woman and man can happily carry on both a public and a private life. If you want to write what I tell you about my private life in your biography I have no objection. I am also not worried whether people look at me in a bad way because of that.”
—B.R. Ambedkar in Vol 2 of C.B. Khairmode’s 12-volume biography, Dr Bhimrao Ramji

A controversy is brewing around the potential publication of some 92 personal letters Frances ‘Fanny’ Fitzgerald, an Irish woman who worked as a typist in the House of Commons, wrote to B.R. Ambedkar, a man whose statues outnumber any other personality’s in India today. Ambedkar himself did not shy away from acknowledging his relationship with ‘F’, as he referred to her. But a book to be published by Roli Books and edited by Arun Kamble, one of the founder-members of the Dalit Panthers and currently professor of Marathi at Mumbai University, has upset Ambedkar scholars and his legal heirs alike.
Kamble claims to have in his possession the letters Frances addressed to Ambedkar between 1923 and 1943.


Ambedkar ‘love letters’ kick up heat and dust 2005

Fritzgerald letters to Ambedkar tell a poignant story of love
According to the publisher, the two met in Geneva and the relationship blossomed when Dr Ambedkar stayed in Francis’ 10, King Henry’s Road, Hampstead, flat on his various visits to England. Francis used to take in lodgers at her apartment.

The letters that Francis wrote to Ambedkar at the height of the Indian freedom struggle (between 1922-1943) indicated her obsession for him. Francis addresses Dr Ambedkar lovingly as “Bhim” and mostly ends the letters with “yours lovingly,” or “with fondest love and lots of kisses, yours for always.”

In one of the letters she says, “I want you to kiss me. I want to feel your strong arms holding me tight. I want you so much, your photograph is on the table beside me but it does not answer me, it does not kiss me back when I kiss it, the other one hangs over my bed, the little bed you had, I sleep in it now.”

The letters often show a woman in love worrying about Dr Ambedkar’s failing health. In another letter she says, “I think that the fact of you losing 16 pounds is too much and I am very much afraid that if you stay there much longer you will be reduced to a skeleton and all the capacity for work will have left you. In fact, I hate to think what you will be like after all this drastic treatment.”

Ambedkar soon became a part of the Francis family, and he would often send her money to buy things for her two children, Roy and Eileen. In one letter she says, “Thank you so much dear for your letter and cheque for five pounds, I have bought Eileen a gold wristlet watch and bracelet, I am sure she will be delighted with it.”

Francis knew Ambedkar was married to his then first wife Ramabai, but she still wrote to him, “I would forgive much in a husband but for being unfaithful, I could not forgive. What I always say is that when people are single let them do what they like, they have only themselves to consider but when they are married it is different.”

ambedkarSardar Patel Ambedkar Correspondence :

I agree that Bapu, If he had been alive would have blessed it.

Ambedkar suffered from lack of sleep, had neuropathic pain in his legs, and was taking insulin and homeopathic medicines. He went to Bombay for treatment, and there met Dr. Sharada Kabir, a Saraswat Brahmin, whom he married on 15 April 1948, at his home in New Delhi. Doctors recommended a companion who was a good cook and had medical knowledge to care for him. She adopted the name Savita Ambedkar and cared for him the rest of his life


Image Source : Navayan

Yashwant Bhimrao Ambedkar wife Miratai Yashwant Ambedkar

Prakash Yashwant (wife Anjali Maydeo )


Anandraj Ambedkar

Anand ( and Rama Teltumbde daugther Rashmi Teltumbde ( , )

Ashok is the son of Ambedkar’s nephew Mukund

Rajratna Ashok Ambedkar

Photo gallery

அம்பேத்கர் மறைவு அம்பேத்கர் மரணத்திற்கு யார் காரணம் ? சில சர்ச்சைகள் Following Dr Ambedkar’s death, Mai came under attack from his close associates, who alleged that she was responsible for the former’s demise, prompting the then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru to appoint a committee to look into the episode. The committee gave a clean chit to Mai.
Ambedkar’s wife passes away at the age of 94 May 28, 2003
She wrote a memoir ‘Babasahebanchya Sahavasat’. She was also instrumental in the making of a feature film on Dr Ambedkar’s life, which was directed by Dr Jabbar Patel.

Ambedkar – Family tree


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