Shashi Tharoor is a suave man who is an orator par excellence. However, he has had a complicated relationship with the truth lately. After his recent misplaced rant of ‘no good Hindu would want to see a Ram temple at Babri site’, the former Union minister has now resorted to peddling lies.
Shashi Tharoor while expressing his dissatisfaction towards the Uttar Pradesh government’s recent decision to changing the name of Allahabad to its earlier name Prayagraj, decided to set a false narrative by subtly hinting that the present government led by BJP was responsible for frequent name changes despite having no role in creating those cities.
In his tweet, Shashi Tharoor has posted an image of News18 containing the names of 18 cities which were subsequently renamed during the tenure of various governments in the last 70 years.
Tharoor tweeted with “A useful cheat-sheet. If you can’t create, you can at least rename”, insinuating that the BJP, which could not create cities has resorted to renaming them as a consolation.
A useful cheat-sheet. If you can’t create, you can at least rename. pic.twitter.com/Xx4mnBXqaN
— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) October 17, 2018
The image posted by Shashi Tharoor contains a list of 18 cities which were either renamed or restored to its historical names. We scrutinised the list and found that at least 13 out of the 18 cities were renamed during the tenure of Congress government in respective states.
Following is the list of cities posted by Shashi Tharoor and let us look at the year and the political party responsible for its renaming:
- Vadodara: The name of Baroda was changed to Vadodara in 1974 during the Congress government led by Chimanbhai Patel.
- Kochi: The erstwhile name of Cochin was replaced by Kochi after the Kerala government led by a Congress Chief Minister decided to change it in 1996.
- Puducherry: The territory of Pondicherry was a French colony in early times and was renamed from Pondicherry to Puducherry in 2006, which is a Tamil word meaning “New Village”. Puducherry is a union territory, its name was changed during the rule of UPA at the centre and the Congress government at Puducherry in 2006.
- Kanpur: The historical city of Kanpur was earlier known by the name of ‘Cawnpore’ by the British. The city attached with greatest historical events was renamed to Kanpur in 1948 during the rule of Congress under the leadership of Jawaharlal Nehru at the Centre and Govind Ballabh Pant being the Chief Minister of the United Provinces, the former name of Uttar Pradesh.
- Thiruvananthapuram: Thiruvananthapuram is named after Anantha Padmanabha or Lord Vishnu of famous Shri Ananthapadmanabha Swamy temple. The city was called as Trivandrum, the anglicised name until 1991 and was changed to Thiruvananthapuram by the ruling Congress government in Kerala.
- The Karnataka government led by Siddaramaiah of the Congress announced the change of names of twelve cities to lend them Kannada flavour in the year 2014. Mangalore (Mangaluru), Bangalore (Bengaluru), Belgaum (Belagavi), Bellary (Ballari), Bijapur (Vijapura), Chikmagalur (Chikkamagaluru), Gulbarga (Kalaburagi), Mysore (Mysuru), Hospet (Hosapete), Shimoga (Shivamogga), Hubli (Hubballi) and Tumkur (Tumakuru) are now known by these new names(in the bracket).
- Chennai: On July 17th 1996, M. Karunanidhi of DMK, the then Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu announced in the state assembly that the state capital of Madras would from then on be known as Chennai.
- Mumbai: The great merchant city of Bombay was renamed on the insistence of Shiv Sena-BJP coalition government of Maharastra in 1995. The Union government led by P V Narasimha Rao of Congress gave its approval to change the name of Bombay to Mumbai.
- Kolkata: On the 1st of January 2001, the West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadev Bhattacharya (belonged to the Communist Party of India) announced that the State Capital ‘Calcutta’ has been officially renamed ‘Kolkata’. Kolkata resembles Kolikata, the name of one of the three villages together which merged to become erstwhile Calcutta, which the British discovered.
- Gurugram: The Haryana government led by the Bharatiya Janata Party decided to the change the name of Gurgaon to ‘Gurugram’. The city of Gurugram is believed to owned by the legendary rulers Pandavas and Kauravas in the past, who presented it to Guru Dronacharaya, their royal guru for warfare, as an appreciation of his training.
Considering Shashi Tharoor asserted that when one cannot build cities, they resort to renaming them, one would imagine that either he is taking potshots at his own party, the Congress, or he has scored a massive self-goal.