Ambedkarites against Ambedkar


EPW Vol – XLVIII No. 19, May 11, 2013 | Anand Teltumbde

It is one thing to revere one’s hero but quite another to consider him to be god. Following Ambedkar means being inspired by his vision of “liberty, equality and fraternity” and acting in accordance with his advice to “educate, agitate, organise” so as to realise his goals of annihilation of castes and achievement of socialism.

Anand Teltumbde ( is a writer and civil rights activist with the Committee for the Protection of Democratic Rights, Mumbai.

This is an abridged version of a speech delivered on the 122nd birth anniversary of B R Ambedkar at the Open University, Mysore on 15 April 2013.

A controversy was created by a Mumbai-based Marathi dalit daily by using some of my statements sans the context relating to Babasaheb Ambedkar at a conference on “Marxism and the Caste Question” and manipulating the sentiments of dalits. The motive of the canard against me notwithstanding, the unfounded story has nevertheless helped foreground a crucial question as to what Ambedkar is and what it means to be his follower. The manner in which Ambedkar is invoked in justification of each reactionary acrobatic by the political class and even referred to by dalit intellectuals either out of sheer ignorance or as a part of their consciously carved out strategy to curry favour of the ruling classes, has served to reduce him to an inert “godhead” to be merely worshipped or worse, a reactionary identity icon blocking any further enlightenment. The near decimation of dalit movement, the persistent misery of the dalit masses and the growth of a reactionary stratum of self-seeking dalit elites engendered by this bhakti cult over the last four decades have set in motion a vicious cycle of hopelessness among the masses further reinforcing the saviour syndrome among them. It is time we see through this insidious process to extricate the real Ambedkar from the growing morass of reaction.

The Real Ambedkar

The underscoring theme of Ambedkar’s life reflects the deep impact of his professor John Dewey while he was a student at Columbia University. As one scholar says, “Unless we understand something of John Dewey…it would be impossible to understand Dr Ambedkar.”1 This influence ran through his writings as well as the strategies and tactics he formula­ted.2 Dewey’s philosophy of progressive ­pragmatism or instrumentalism considered all knowledge as tentative and thus stressed the importance of any theoretical postulate being tested in practice to progressively enrich theory. It thus reje­cted the existence of any “grand theory” such as Marx’s. Despite Ambedkar’s creative genius in applying this mode of thought to the Indian context, his philosophical proclivities clearly reflect the deep influence of Dewey. A plethora of anecdotal and empirical evidence can be cited besides his own admission as late as in June 1952 that he owed his whole intellectual life to Dewey.3 This philosophical approach basically precludes any enduring thesis to be an ism about historical progression.

Ambedkar, however, had a clear vision explicated in terms of his “ideal” as “the society based on liberty, equality and frater­nity”,4 the famous motto of the French Revolution. But he claimed that he had taken this value triad from Buddha. He was not satisfied with the discrete bourgeois conception of this motto and insisted on the coexistence of all three to be found in Buddhism. Here he tends to transcend Dewey, who, while meaning the same, is content with its classic source located in the French Revolution. A social paradigm of such conception could be ideal to strive for and arguably be likened to Marx’s communism sans, of course, the latter’s scientific construction.

In the Indian context, the foremost hurdle in the path towards this vision being the institution of caste, Ambedkar rightly identified annihilation of castes as his goal. The second goal that was identified by him was socialism, which for him was an essential ingredient of democracy. His idea of socialism was surely Fabian, again inherited from Dewey, the American Fabian, and reinforced during his stay at the London School of Economics, the institution founded by the Fabian society. In contrast to Marx’s scientific socialism, this socialism would be bro­ught about gradually, through the enligh­tened middle classes and be characterised as the emancipation of land and industrial capital. His first political party, the Independent Labour Party, founded in 1936, was ­fashioned after the Fabian-backed party of the same name in England. It clearly propounded the socialist goal and had proudly adopted a red flag for itself. Later, he famously proposed a model of state socialism be incorporated into the Constitution as its basic feature, not ordinarily alterable by the legislature.5 His embracement of Buddhism at the end of his life was a step towards socialism, as, according to him, it had the same end as that of Marxism but without its deficient means, viz, violence and dictatorship.6

Ambedkar’s Final Words of Advice

Did Ambedkar reflect, much less leave behind, a systematic theory that explains or predicts the world and constitutes an “ism”? But for the identity obsession, the honest and objective answer to this question has to be in the negative. Rather to think otherwise is to negate his basic core. His life reveals that he tried out various strategies and tactics depending on the unfolding situation to the extent that one finds a bewildering degree of inconsistency in his thoughts and actions. Ambedkar would simply dismiss this by saying that consistency was a virtue of an ass.7 What informed these inconsistencies was the philosophy of progressive pragmatism. For example, his declaration that he would never die as a Hindu was explained as the existential strategy to overcome the weaknesses of dalits in merging with an existing religious community.8 After two decades he fulfilled his vow by embracing Buddhism which was hardly known in mainland India.

Soon after the adoption of the Constitution, Ambedkar exhorted his followers to shun agitation as a political tactic and adopt constitutional means, but there­after he publicly denounced the Constitution as of no use to any one and disowned it saying he was used as a hack and that he would be the first person to burn it. Thus not merely expediency but even in theory Ambedkar does not leave behind any systematic body of thought that can be termed Ambedkarism, simply because he did not believe in one. He does leave for us his vision, his goals and a role model to follow.

His methodological direction to his followers comes in his “final words of advice”: “educate, agitate and organise”, the famed mission and slogan of the Fabian society, which he had adopted as the mast for his paper Bahishkrit Bharat, quite like the Italian communist Antonio Gramsci’s L’Ordine Nuovo(The New Order). It basically stressed the ever changing nature of reality and the need to be enlightened enough to comprehend and confront it: Educate so as to understand the world around, agitate against evil and organise in order to gain strength to root it out. He exhorted his followers to beprabuddha with the cognitive capability to analyse their situation, develop an abhorrence towards injustice and unitedly stru­ggle to root it out. He did not impose his methods or conclusions onto his followers but rather expected them to devise appropriate strategies and tactics in their own space and time as enlightened people.

Following Ambedkar

Following Ambedkar means being inspired by his vision of “liberty, equality and fraternity” and acting in accordance with his advice “educate, agitate, organise” so as to realise his goals of annihilation of castes and achievement of socialism. It means being enlightened and not self-blinded, hymn-singing devotees. It is one thing to revere one’s hero but quite another to consider him to be god as he himself cautioned:9

Hero-worship in the sense of expressing our unbounded admiration is one thing. To obey the hero is a totally different kind of hero-worship. There is nothing wrong in the former while the latter is no doubt a most pernicious thing. The former is only man’s respect for everything which is noble and of which the great man is only an embodiment. The latter is the villain’s fealty to his lord. The former is consistent with respect, but the latter is a sign of debasement. The former does not take away one’s intelligence to think and independence to act. The latter makes one a perfect fool.

Quite like Buddha, who exhorted his disciples not to take his advice uncritically and to be a light unto themselves (atta deep bhava), Ambedkar also cautioned against uncritically accepting the maxims and conclusions of anyone howsoever great:

No great man really does his work by crippling his disciples, by forcing on them his maxims or his conclusions. What a great man does is not to impose his maxims on his disciples. What he does is to evoke them, to awaken them to a vigorous…exertion of their faculties. Again the pupil only takes his guidance from his master. He is not bound to accept his master’s conclusions. There is no ingratitude in the disciple not accepting the maxims or the conclusions of his master. For even when he rejects them he is bound to acknowledge to his master in deep reverence ‘You awakened me to be myself; for that I thank you.’ The master is not entitled to less. The disciple is not bound to give more.10

The march of the Ambedkarites in the light of the foregoing could be clearly seen as anti-Ambedkar. Indeed, they have consistently disrespected him in their acts of commission and omission: ignoring his vision of annihilation of castes and achievement of socialism in overtly celebrating caste identities and promoting slavishness to an ill-constructed icon of that great iconoclast. They have ghettoised him in their sectarian temples as an infallible god and made him un­available for future generations to learn from. As he once said:

I am prepared to pick and choose from everyone, Socialist, Communist or other. I do not claim infallibility and as Buddha says, there is nothing infallible; there is nothing final and everything is liable to examination.11

It is high time Ambedkarites understood Ambedkar before flaunting their Ambedkarism from their cosy armchairs.


1 K N Kadam, “Dr Ambedkar’s Philosophy of Emancipation and the Impact of John Dewey” in The Meaning of Ambedkarite Conversion to Buddhism and Other Essays (Mumbai: Popular Prakashan), 1997, V.

2 Arun P Mukherjee, “B R Ambedkar, John Dewey and the Meaning of Democracy”, New Literary History, 40.2 (2009): 345-70.

3 A letter to Dr Savita Ambedkar: Last accessed on 20 April 2013.

Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar, Writing & Speeches (BAWS), Annihilation of Castes, Vol 1 (Mumbai: Government of Maharashtra), p 57.

5 BAWS, States and Minorities, Vol 1, p 406.

6 BAWS, Buddha or Karl Marx, Vol 3, p 443.

7 BAWS, Vol 1, p 141.

What Path to Salvation? Speech delivered by Ambedkar to the Bombay Presidency Mahar Conference, 31 May 1936, Bombay. Translated from the Marathi by Vasant W Moon, http://www.columbia. edu/itc/mealac/pritchett/ 00am bedkar/txt_ambedkar_salvation.html, last acce­ssed on 20 April 2013.

9 BAWS, Ranade, Gandhi and Jinnah, Vol 1, p 231.

10 Ibid.

11 While discussing the Constitution (Fourth Amendment) Bill, 1954 as law minister, BAWS, Vol 15, p 960.

This is an abridged version of a speech delivered on the 122nd birth anniversary of B R Ambedkar at the Open University, Mysore on 15 April 2013.


BBC Tactics in Covering North Korea Are Faulted

Published: April 14, 2013, NYT
BBC Broadcasting House, Portland Place at the ...

BBC Broadcasting House, Portland Place at the head of Regent Street, London (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As tensions escalated between North Korea and the world late last month, a small group of students from the prestigious London School of Economics crossed the border into the reclusive country for what was described by organizers as a government-sanctioned “week of sight seeing, meeting with ministers, government officials” and academics.

 But among the students, the university announced in an outraged statement over the weekend, were three BBC journalists filming an undercover documentary. The BBC, the university said, “deliberately misled” the group to underplay the scope of the reporting, placed the students in danger and jeopardized its work in politically fraught nations. It demanded that the BBC pull the film, set for broadcast on Monday, and issue an apology.

The BBC declined, saying that the documentary on a country so few people understand was in the public interest. And in a statement released Sunday, the BBC disputed the university’s account. It said the students had been told that a journalist would be present “and were reminded of it again, in time to have been able to change their plans if they wanted to.”

But the BBC, which the university says actually sent three journalists, also later acknowledged that it had not told the students of the nature of the documentary, in what it characterized as a bid to keep them safe if the journalists were found out and the students were questioned about what they knew.

Although at least some tourists are now allowed into the police state, reporters need government permission to work there and are assigned minders. In 2009 two American journalists, Laura Ling, then 32, and Euna Lee, then 36, were arrested and sentenced to 12 years of hard labor after being accused of illegally entering North Korean territory while researching a report on women and human trafficking. They were spared the prospect of years in a brutal gulag when former President Bill Clinton flew to Pyongyang and negotiated their release four months later.

Alex Peters-Day, the lead student representative for the university, said Sunday that students had received e-mails from the North Korean government on their return saying that it had learned that reporters were with the group and was very angry. Ms. Peters-Day disputed the BBC version of events, saying the students had not been given enough information to give informed consent.

Craig Calhoun, the university’s director, said in a post on Twitter that the trip “was not an official LSE trip.” He said the BBC had essentially recruited some students in a university-affiliated student international relations group, the Grimshaw Club, and had “passed it off” as a student trip.

Ms. Peters-Day said that students had received an e-mail suggesting the trip from one of the BBC journalists, Tomiko Sweeney, who is married to the lead reporter on the documentary, John Sweeney, and is a former LSE student. Mr. Sweeney did not respond to a message left on his cellphone, but said, in a BBC radio interview and on Twitter that he disputed the school’s allegations. There was no answer at a London number listed for the couple.

Ceri Thomas, the BBC’s head of news, said Sunday that though the trip had been organized by Mr. Sweeney’s wife, it “was going to happen before the BBC got involved.” The students were warned of the dangers in two meetings in London and again in Beijing, he said. “The only people we deceived,” he said of the documentary, “was the North Korean government. And if the students were in on that deception they were in a worse position.”

The public interest argument for the documentary was “overwhelming,” Mr. Thomas said. North Korea is “a country that is hidden from view, where we suspect that brutal things are happening, one of the most oppressive regimes on the planet which is threatening nuclear war in the Korean Peninsula.”

The standoff marks the second time this year that the world’s delicate diplomatic dance with North Korea over its escalating nuclear threats has been disturbed by a television crew. In late February, the magazine Vice sent the former Chicago Bulls star Dennis Rodman to Pyongyang to meet the country’s leader, Kim Jong-un, an avid basketball fan, for a documentary series it is producing in collaboration with HBO.

That heavily covered visit, after the country’s latest nuclear test in defiance of world powers, allowed the young Mr. Kim to present himself — at least to his people — as someone who is respected outside his country.
The BBC’s Mr. Sweeney is a veteran television reporter famed for his tangles with the Church of Scientology. The North Korean guides, the university said, called him “professor.”

The documentary, titled “North Korea Undercover” and part of the BBC’s flagship Panorama series, shows a “landscape bleak beyond words, a people brainwashed for three generations and a regime happy to give the impression of marching towards Armageddon,” according to the BBC’s Web site. Unlike Mr. Rodman, Mr. Sweeney appears not to have gained access to the North Korean inner circle.

Stephen J. A. Ward, director of the Center for Journalism Ethics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, expressed surprise that the BBC had chosen to report the story as it did, though he acknowledged that undercover journalism is a widely accepted practice in Britain. “You have to be able to say ‘there is no other way we can get this story,’ and that you’re not putting other people in danger,” he said.

The Associated Press has had a bureau in Pyongyang since 2012.

Universities UK, a body that represents British universities, criticized the BBC on Sunday.

“The way that this BBC investigation was conducted might not only have put students’ safety at risk,” Nicola Dandridge, the group’s chief executive, told reporters, “but may also have damaged our universities’ reputations overseas.”

Late last year, the BBC’s ethical standards were questioned when it emerged that one of its presenters, Jimmy Savile, had faced accusations of sexual abuse spanning his long career. The BBC had declined to broadcast a news investigation into the accusations, but did broadcast two glowing tributes to Mr. Savile after his death in 2011.

The London School of Economics became embroiled in difficulties of its own with an oppressive regime when it emerged in 2011 that it had close links with the government of Muammar el-Qaddafi of Libya, including accepting training contracts worth millions and a donation from the dictator’s son Seif al-Islam Qaddafi. It eventually diverted the money to a scholarship fund for North African students.

Unique ID is dangerous for you; it should be scrapped #Aadhaar

200 px

200 px (Photo credit: Wikipedia)



Dec 18, 2012, The First Post


By Yogi Aggarwal

The government’s controversial scheme of giving a unique 12-digit identification (ID) number to identify a resident (and not necessarily a citizen) of this country got a massive leg up with the announcement of the direct cash transfers programme. The UID is the technology anchor of the programme, the first of many to come.  It is to be linked to payments under MGNREGA, subsidised foodgrain under the public distribution system (PDS), and many others.

Some news reports on the UID, or the Aadhaar scheme, indicate which way it may be leading us. The Hindustan Times of 28 November states: “The Delhi government is considering making UID numbers mandatory for all public services from next year.”  A report from Nagpur dated 4 December says: “The state government has made it clear to all schools that unless all staff and students are enrolled in the Unique identification scheme, no salaries will be paid from next financial year.” The Hindu reported on 20 November: “A government order says that school children who are not enrolled in the Aadhaar scheme by 31 March 2013 will not be given benefits, including scholarships, grants, and various certificates.”

This is only the beginning of the story. Even though UID is not currently mandatory, it is increasingly being made so and banks, the labour ministry and even the railways are planning to incorporate it to provide services. An approach paper on privacy done for the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) says: “As more and more agencies of the government sign on to the UID project, the UID number will become the common thread that links all those databases together … There is tremendous scope for… commercial exploitation of this information without the consent/knowledge of the individual.”

The dangers of the state using the UID to collate information from different databases such as those of banks, the tax authorities, hospitals, passport offices, driving licences and others are increasing. In December 2009, the National Intelligence Grid (Natgrid), established within the home ministry, will funnel information about us from 21 databases to 11 security agencies. In April 2011, rules framed under the Information Technology Act explained that those holding “sensitive personal data,”  which includes “physical, physiological and mental health condition”, “sexual orientation”, “biometric information” and so on would be are required to share it with the government when asked.

Parliament’s Standing Committee on Finance (SCoF), chaired by Yashwant  Sinha, in its December 2011 report on the UID had several objections to the scheme. While the committee “categorically conveyed their unacceptability of the National Identification Authority of India Bill, 2010,” it was damning when it said that, “The UID scheme has been conceptualised with no clarity of purpose and leaving many things to be sorted out during the course of its implementation; and is being implemented in a directionless way with a lot of confusion.”

The SCoF raises serious questions about the government beginning Aadhaar enrolments without parliament’s approval of the Bill, and comes down heavily on the government for proceeding without the “enactment of a national data protection law” – an essential prerequisite “for any law that deals with large-scale collection of information from individuals and its linkages across separate databases.”

The report also questions the use of biometrics to prove the unique identity of individuals. It notes that “the scheme is full of uncertainty in technology” and is built upon “untested, unreliable technology.” It notes that under Indian conditions, where most people, especially farmers, do manual work which scars or damages fingerprints, the “estimated failure of biometrics is expected to be as high as 15 percent”. So instead of a foolproof method of verifying a person’s uniqueness, it becomes a dangerous sham.

The SCoF report states that “there are lessons to be learnt from the global experience” which the ministry has “ignored completely”. The UK shelved its identity cards project for a number of reasons, including the huge costs involved, untested and unsafe technology, and risk to security of citizens. It adds that the London School of Economics report on the UK Identity Project inter-alia states that “…..identity systems may create a range of new and unforeseen problems……the risk of failure in the current proposals is, therefore, magnified to the point where the scheme should be regarded as a potential danger to the public interest and to the legal rights of individuals”.

In the US, though there is no comparable identity scheme, the social security number (SSN) plays a similar role. Until the early 2000s, it was closely guarded by the state and employers. Then the SSNs of individuals were exposed to a wide array of private players, which identity thieves used to access bank accounts, credit accounts, utilities records and other sources of personal information. In 2006, the Government Accountability Office noted that “over a one-year period, nearly 10 million people — or 4.6 percent of the adult US population — discovered that they were victims of some form of identity theft, translating into estimated losses exceeding $50 billion.”

In India, the dangers are manifold. The UIDAI has subcontracted its entire enrolment process to private companies, unlike the census, which is usually conducted by government employees. Thousands of private agents, acting as enrollers, data-collectors, and data-transporters, will have the potential to make a quick buck by selling UID data in electronic form to market players. This is especially risky, since information about biometric details, bank account numbers, and telephone numbers of potential customers can have a huge market demand.

The dangers of the state using the UID to collate information from different databases such as those of banks, the tax authorities, hospitals, passport offices, driving licences and others are increasing. PTI

As the government rushes ahead with plans to make the UID more ubiquitous, pushing ahead with its spread, the opposition to it is also growing. On 28 November 2012, civil rights activists issued a statement demanding that “the project be halted, a feasibility study be done covering all aspects of this issue, experts be tasked with studying its constitutionality, the law on privacy be urgently worked on (this will affect matters way beyond the UID project), a cost- benefit analysis be done and a public, informed debate be conducted before any such major change be brought in.”

This statement was issued by luminaries including former Supreme Court Justice VR Krishna Iyer, historian Romila Thapar, NAC member Aruna Roy, Upendra Baxi, jurist and former vice-chancellor of the Universities of Surat and Delhi, and many others. They raised 10 questions about the UID.

These included: (1) the need for UID, when 15 other identity proofs exist; (2) why Indian citizens should be profiled based on biometric data when even prisoners are not; (3) how the UID project poses a threat to the privacy rights of citizens; (4) the implications of an extraordinary dependence on corporations, many of them companies with close links to foreign intelligence agencies;  (5) linking of UID with voter ID, land titles, National Intelligence Grid, National Population Register (NPR), National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC), etc, as an assault on the rights of citizens; (6) the lack of guarantees on the use of the database for communal and ethnic targeting of minorities and political dissidents.

With the parliamentary committee having rubbished the UID scheme and shown how it is inimical to national interest and individual privacy, the government should drop the idea instead of continuing with its folly.



UID brings serious discrimination concerns

Published: Friday, Apr 20, 2012, 9:00 IST

By Yogesh Pawar | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

Professor Edgar Whitley
Shraddha Bhargava | DNA

A major facilitating factor in this nationwide campaign was the release of a London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) report that demonstrated the futility of nationwide biometric-basedidentity schemes, showing that they were slated to become endless exercises of ever-increasing expenditure, bringing in their wake serious risks like identity theft.The lead author of this study Professor Edgar Whitley – Reader in Information Systems at the Information Systems and Innovation Group in the LSE was in Mumbai for a talk on :’The Challenge of Effective Identity Policies: Lessons from Around the World.’ Excerpts of an interview byYogesh Pawar:

Was the UK government’s decision in 2004 to bring in an identity card project born of only security concerns or was there a development angle too as it is being done by Indian authorities? 
(Laughs) We are still trying to figure that one out. The idea of identity cards has often been bandied. In 2002, it began with a discussion about entitlement cards and slowly gave way to identity cards. From improving access to public services, to national security concerns and even the enabling of young people, who did not necessarily have a documents for transactions like opening bank accounts or getting a mobile number. Sometimes it was even suggested that the ID card could be used to travel freely across Europe without passports.

The claims and responses kept changing. If the idea of having a centralised database was to address questions of identity fraud, so that people would not have more than one identity card, then there were other ways in which you do that without centralising personal information. So when some aspects of the project found less favour, other claims were made and so on.

There are both kinds of views. Some feel such an ID card would increase discrimination while others felt it would help reduce it. Your comment 
If a surgeon is checking for entitlement, and I, as a white middle-class male, come along and say, “I don’t have my card. But can I book a doctor’s appointment?”Will I be treated the same way as another fellow national who is not white and speaks English with an accent? The latter might face morechecks despite their entitlement being same as mine. So concerns of discrimination are very serious.

What were some of the concerns raised by the LSE report?
We argued that the ID card system could offer serve some basic public interest and commercial sector benefits. There were however six key areas of concern. First, there was clear lack of specific focus in purpose. Secondly, there was concern over whether the technology would work since smaller and less ambitious schemes had encountered huge technological and operational problems. The use of biometrics was of particular concern since it had never been used on such a scale. Thirdly there were legal issues over privacy and discrimination. Fourthly, we felt that the National Data Register was likely to create a very large data pool in one place that could be an enhanced security risk for hacking or other malfunctions. Fifthly, a system well accepted by citizens is likely to be more successful in use than a controversial one that raises privacy concerns.

Finally, compliance with the new system would mean that even small firms would have to pay for smartcard readers and other requirements, which would have added to their burden.

Your report says “the scheme should be regarded as a potential danger to public interest and legal rights of individuals”. Please elaborate.
You see there was a genuine concern about the audit trail. If you produce your ID card for every transaction and the system keeps a record, this can check forgery. On the other hand, this provides details of every transaction, which can be seen by anyone with access.

It also goes beyond that. If you went to a sexual health clinic and used your card and fingerprint for verification, the audit trail would show you were there on a number of occasions. It might be reasonable to infer things about your lifestyle you may not want to disclose. This may not be done purposely but this danger is there in the design.

The other concern was the biometrics. If someone breaks into your e-mail account, you can always reset your password. But if the biometric is stolen, the possibility of revoking it is almost impossible.

Give us a sense of how the average Briton reacted to the identity project? What built the momentum enough for the project to be finally shelved in 2010?
It was scrapped because parties that came to power were opposed to it. A lobby group -NO2ID- got the message out about concerns with this process. Many activists across the political spectrum got involved. They were just explaining the project and some of the dangers it was fraught with. They worked closely with the media which also showed considerable interest and the result is there for everyone to see.

India is in the thick of the debate on the unique ID  scheme.

What are the resonances in the scrapped British identity project.
I know you are looking at me giving you a headline point but I do not want to be (Laughs) the imperialist who takes the top down view of things. On the whole it will be in the interest of India and her people to look very closely at some of the questions raised in the debate in the UK. The sooner it is done the better.


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