http://www.open.ac.uk
Dr. M. R. Jayakar

Early Life:

Dr. Mukund RamraoJayakar was born in Bombay in 1873 and grew up to become a prominent lawyer.He was one of the key members of the Hindu Mahasabha and was its first President; he was also one of the non-Brahmin leaders of the Mahasabha.

 

He established the Hindu Law Research and Reform Association (HLRRA) in 1923. This organization aimed to build a network of legal practitioners and scholars to advance, reform and work on Hindu legal framework. One of the main objectives of HLRRA was to determine, under the English regime, the:

 

principles underlying the system of Hindu Law...and propose legislation with a view to rectify errors in the administration of Hindu Law, arising from departure from the true spirit of the Hindu Code.

 

Jayakar became a member of the Swaraj Party and in 1934 was nominated as a Judge to the Federal Court and later became a Privy Councillor in 1939.

 

Contribution to Constitution Making:

Jayakar was a member of the Sapru Committee, a non-party affiliated group, which produced a report in 1945. The Sapru Committee Report laid down principles for a new constitution and demanded a distinct constitution making body.

 

He was elected to the Constituent Assembly on a Congress ticket from Bombay. However after a brief stint in the Assembly, he gave up his seat which Ambedkar then occupied.

 

Key Writings:

Jayakar authored his autobiography The Story of My Life (Bombay: Asia Publishing House, 1958).

In A.F.Whyte’s, an English Civil Servant, review of Jayakar’s autobiography, he notes:

The first volume takes the story of the author and (needless to say) of contemporary Indian down to 1922. The second will follow soon; and the two volumes taken together will not only be the authentic personal narrative of a remarkable Pilgrim’s Progress, but will constitute a political survey indispensible to the student of Indian affairs.

Jayakar was not a member of any Committees in the Assembly.

  1. When Jawaharlal Nehru sought to move Objectives Resolution, Dr. Jayakar through his amendment argued for postponing Assembly sessions until such time the Muslim League and the Princely States joined the Constituent Assembly. He noted that the decision of India becoming a ‘Republic’ was ‘intimately connected to Muslim League and the Princely States’.

  1. Jayakar, M.R, The Story of My Life, Bombay: Asia Publishing House, 1958
  2. Kulkarni, V. B., M. R. Jayakar , Publications Division, Government of India.