PULLQUOTE

India Today - - UPFRONT -

“Name chang­ing is an at­tempt to de­mol­ish the idea of In­dia we grew up with. It’s an as­sault on the coun­try’s com­pos­ite Ganga Ja­muna cul­ture and try­ing to tell Mus­lims they don’t be­long here. But be sure it is as much my coun­try as yours. We are just not go­ing any­where”

For­mer Jammu and Kash­mir chief min­is­ter MEHBOOBA MUFTI had an im­pas­sioned re­sponse on so­cial me­dia to news of more name changes man­dated by the Yogi Adityanath-led govern­ment in Ut­tar Pradesh. Ear­lier this week, the state cabi­net ap­proved the re­nam­ing of Al­la­habad and Faiz­abad as Praya­graj and Ay­o­d­hya, re­spec­tively. Other cities are wait­ing ea­gerly in the wings. Ahmed­abad, the Gu­jarat Chief Min­is­ter Vi­jay Ru­pani has said, could be­come Kar­na­vati be­fore the gen­eral elec­tion. While name changes have been mooted for Agra and Hy­der­abad among oth­ers. The ‘tehzeeb’ Mufti re­called so fondly ap­pears passé. But even the BJP’s al­lies rolled their eyes at the name changes. A ‘glo­ri­ous’ past, how­ever ro­man­ti­cised, can­not be re­sus­ci­tated by the sym­bolic chang­ing of names. Nor can his­tory be so eas­ily erased. So what, many are ask­ing, is the point?

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