A Right to Information (RTI) workshop, medical camp, folk dance stressing on safe sex, spectacles distribution and vocation guidance workshop. These were all happening amidst the gathering of lakhs of Dalits who had flocked to Chaityabhumi at Shivaji Park to pay tribute to Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar on his 50th death anniversary.
"There is lack of awareness of safe sex among the rural people compared to the city dwellers. On this day, we get lot of people from backward areas and hence it is easy to spread our message," said Dr Rupesh Mahajan, Medical Officer, and Niramaya Health Foundation.
The volunteers demonstrated how to use condoms, the tests used for detection of AIDS and the steps to prevent the disease.
NGO Manav Vikas Sansthan has made it a mission to spread awareness on RTI Act to empower the Dalit masses. "Today we have an effective RTI Law but people are still not aware of it. RTI would play an important role in emancipating Dalits and prevent officials from usurping our rights," said Bapu Raut, President of the Samsthan.
More than 500 people took benefit of this workshop. Kalu Kamble from Nagpur was so impressed that he vowed to put up an application under RIT seeking information on the expenditure incurred by his village Panchayat. "I never knew that we can even ask for accounts from the authorities. This was unheard of," said Kamble.
Right through the morning corporator Manoj Sansare and Sena leader Chandrakant Kamble were busy distributing spectacles to the needy people.
Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar National Association of Engineers was offering vocational guidance to needy students. "We focus on youngsters who have discontinued their studies midway and encourage them to take up vocational fields. We also offer financial help as no student should be deprived of education for want of money," said Dhananjay Mankar, Executive member, Association.