The feverish activity to rename Indian towns is an interesting development in Indian politics. These days, political parties are adamant on changing the names of certain cities that have been previously coined by Muslims. It has created a debate internationally. The high administrative and monetary burden of this scheme is not commensurate with the effort. The earlier renamed cities are still known and identified by the earlier names. To my mind there is not much to gain for the nation or the people, if these names are changed.
It is interesting to go back in ancient and medieval history to know what the original name of our country and what transformations took place over centuries. The Aryan race divided the populace into four castes. With the development of faiths the North Western area of India was given the name Bharatwarsh.
After the invasion of that region by Mongols, Turks, Persians and Afghans and expansion of their empires the area began to be called by the name Hindostan or Hindustan keeping in rhyme with its neighbours, Afghanistan, Tooran, Balochistan and more. The people of the area started to be known as Hindus in place of Hindis. After the invasion of the Dutch, French and British armies, ‘Hind’ transformed to ‘Inde’, later to ‘India’. The people enthusiastic about renaming these cities, should replace India with ‘Bharat’ and Hindu by ‘Bharati’, to satisfy their urge.
- The reader is a resident of Dubai.