Young Ambedkarite Lawyer Bodhi Ramteke Selected for UN's Prestigious Graduate Study Program

His legal advocacy for the rights of the Madia Adivasi community, one of the Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups, has been especially noteworthy. For instance, with the collective efforts of the community, he made a legal intervention addressing fundamental issues such as lack of road infrastructure, healthcare, and electricity in four Madia villages.
Bodhi's selection for the GSP recognizes his research, advocacy, and socio-legal work on grassroots issues affecting Adivasis in Gadchiroli.
Bodhi's selection for the GSP recognizes his research, advocacy, and socio-legal work on grassroots issues affecting Adivasis in Gadchiroli.

Geneva, Switzerland – The United Nations is hosting its 62nd Graduate Study Program (GSP), a prestigious educational initiative that has welcomed over 3,000 young minds from more than 110 countries since its inception in 1962. This year, out of over 1,800 applications, 54 scholars from 42 countries have been selected to participate. Among them is Bodhi Ramteke, a distinguished young lawyer and researcher from the Gadchiroli district in Maharashtra, India.

Bodhi will engage in various sessions and research activities focusing on sustainable development, financing for development, international peace and security, science-technology-innovation and digital cooperation, youth, and social change at the UN in Geneva.

Currently pursuing his master's in Human Rights Policy and Practice through the prestigious Erasmus Mundus scholarship from the European Commission, Bodhi's studies span across universities in Spain, Sweden, and the UK. His selection for the GSP recognizes his research, advocacy, and socio-legal work on grassroots issues affecting Adivasis in Gadchiroli.

Through his organization, Policy and Law Network, founded along with Chevening Scholar Deepak Chatap four years ago, Bodhi has worked to ensure access to justice for Adivasis and other marginalized groups, developing legal consciousness among common citizens.

His legal advocacy for the rights of the Madia Adivasi community, one of the Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups, has been especially noteworthy. For instance, with the collective efforts of the community, he made a legal intervention addressing fundamental issues such as lack of road infrastructure, healthcare, and electricity in four Madia villages.

These villages face severe human rights violations due to the lack of basic facilities and become disconnected for more than five months every year during the monsoon. This effort led to the government approving funds of ₹35 crores for the construction of roads, bridges, and a hospital.

In the realm of research, Bodhi has made significant contributions, including for the Australian National Community Consultations on Caste Discrimination 2024 Project led by Asang Wankhede, University of Oxford. The project, conducted by the Australian Human Rights Commission in partnership with FECCA, Ambedkar International Mission, and Shri Guru Ravidass Sabha, Australia, aimed to recognize caste as a protected category within their legal framework amidst rising caste discrimination in Australia.

His participation in global conferences, including presenting research on the cultural revolutionary step of Gond tribes in Gadchiroli to revive their cultural and linguistic heritage by establishing their own school, at the World Conference on Anthropology and Education in London, has been instrumental in bringing international attention to these issues.

Inspired by Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, Mahatma Phule, and Manyawar Kanshiram, and being brought up in the Ambedkarite movement, Bodhi Ramteke remains committed to raising issues of marginalized and caste-oppressed communities on the international stage. He aims to leverage his research, educational experiences, and knowledge to empower these communities and contribute to the ongoing grassroots movements for their legal and social advancement.

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