‘BJP should change Shah’s name be­cause of its Per­sian ori­gin’

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - TIMES NATION - Arvind.Chauhan @times­group.com

Agra: Amid the name-chang­ing spree of BJP gov­ern­ments in var­i­ous states, em­i­nent his­to­rian Ir­fan Habib has said that the first name the party should con­sider chang­ing is that of its chief

Shah. “His sur­name ‘Shah’ is of Per­sian ori­gin and not of Gu­jarati,” he said.

The 87-year-old Ali­garh Mus­lim Univer­sity pro­fes­sor emer­i­tus added, “Even the term Gu­jarat it­self is of Per­sian ori­gin. It was called Gur­jara­tra ear­lier. They should also change it.”

Habib said, “The BJP gov­ern­ments’ re­nam­ing spree is very much in line with the RSS’s Hin­dutva pol­icy. Just like the neigh­bour­ing coun­try Pak­istan where ev­ery­thing that is not Is­lamic has been re­moved, BJP and right-wing sup­port­ers want to change things which are non-Hindu, par­tic­u­larly of Is­lamic ori­gin.”

He was re­act­ing to five-term BJP MLA Ja­gan Prasad Garg’s let­ter to state chief min­is­ter Yogi Adityanath, re­quest­ing him to re­name the city of Taj as ‘Agra­van’ as the city is home to the Agrawal com­mu­nity, who are the fol­low­ers of Ma­haraja Agrasen. Speak­ing with TOI, the law- maker said, “The term Agra has no mean­ing. Nearly 5,000 years ago, the en­tire belt close to Ya­muna was a densely forested area and peo­ple knew it as Agra­van, which finds men­tion in Ma­hab­harata too. Later, dur­ing the Mughal regime, the city was re­named as Ak­barabad.”

“The gov­ern­ment should re­name it to Agra­van for an­other rea­son. Agra city is the big­gest home to the Agrawal com­mu­nity and they are the fol­low­ers of Ma­haraja Agrasen, who once ruled Agra­van. Over four lakh Agrawals live in the city of Taj,” the MLA said.

Mean­while, UP cab­i­net min­is­ter and Suheldev Bharatiya Sa­maj Party (SBSP) chief Om Prakash Ra­jb­har on Satur­day urged the rul­ing party to first re­name its Mus­lim lead­ers be­fore set­ting out to change names of cities and dis­tricts. “Since the gov­ern­ment is chang­ing Mus­lim names, so it should also re­name its Mus­lim lead­ers. Mohsin Raza, who is in UP cab­i­net, Shah­nawaz Hus­sain and Mukhtar Ab­bas Naqvi. BJP is do­ing this only to dis­tract at­ten­tion from real is­sues like un­em­ploy­ment, poverty etc,” Ra­jb­har said, adding that Mus­lims had given the coun­try great pieces of ar­chi­tec­ture like the Taj Ma­hal and Red Fort.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.