India is still par excellence the land of idolatry. There is idolatry in religion; there is idolatry in politics. Heroes and hero-worship are a hard if unfortunate, fact in India’s political life.
—Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Writing and Speeches—Vol-I
Ambedkar’s observation made about India almost decades ago applies equally even now to modern democratic globalized India. The unfortunate part is that over the period Ambedkar himself could not stand indifferent to the practice. Today, a diverse section of people cutting across caste, class and ideological backgrounds appreciate Ambedkar for his ideas. Over the period Ambedkar followers and now joined by Ambedkar’s traditional critics consisting of Hindutva groups have raised his stature to the status of a divine figure.