At the specially convened general body meeting of the Federation of Delhi RWAs, held on the lawns surrounding India Gate, it was unanimously decided to launch an online signature campaign to rename it as Bharat Dwar. The Chairman of the federation, Mr. Bharat Singh spoke exclusively to our correspondent Trishanku on the need for this renaming. Here is an edited transcript of the dialogue.
T: Mr Bharat Singh, what is the need for renaming such a well-known landmark of Delhi? The people all over the world recognize it by this name. If I recall correctly your federation had earlier strongly opposed the move by some historians to change the name of Delhi to Indraprastha and now you also seem to be falling into the same trap of renaming.
BS: You are right; as a principle the federation is still opposed to doing such renaming on ‘sentimental’ grounds, but this unanimous suggestion has nothing to do with our love for Hindi names or dislike for names given by the British. We have been forced to take this decision by the circumstances brought about by media’s indiscretion. Ever since you people have invented words like ‘coal-gate’ and ‘cricket-gate’, there have been thousands of tweets from NRI children residing in US and Europe discussing and seeking details of the scam called “India Gate”. This is scandalous. Some have even commented that whole of India is a big scam and ‘India Gate’ is its official symbol. I hope you see how badly it is denting the image of our country and even threatening our ‘sovereign ratings’ given out by these good-for-nothing US agencies. I understand there is a move even to change the name of ‘Colgate’ toothpaste. See, it is serious!
T: I don’t know about toothpaste, Sir, but Delhi has so many ‘gates’. Kashmiri Gate, Lahori Gate, Mori Gate, and even Delhi Gate. Are you going to change their names too?
BS: I have no problem if ‘Lahori gate’, and even Delhi gate, are mistaken as symbols of corruption. And as far as Kashmiri Gate is concerned, there is hardly any remnant left, and who in Delhi knows Mori gate ? So you see, the real issue is about India Gate…… India itself being called a scam…. that is too much!
T: One last question : how did you choose the new name as “ Bharat Dwar”… why not : ‘Hindustan ka Darwaza’ or some other more ‘secular’ name. … Does it have anything to do with your name. Bharat Singh..?
BS: Well I don’t have any objection to any other name as long as the word ‘Gate’ doesn’t figure. But then what is your problem with “Bharat Dwar”? What is un-secular about Bharat? Isn’t it just apt? And for any further clarifications, you are welcome to my home. We can discuss this issue further over a glass of …. I mean, over a cup of tea…..
T: Sure sir…certainly Bharat Dwar seems an appropriate new name for this very old monument… a real tribute to the Bharat-vasi soldiers who laid down their life fighting for justice and peace during the world wars. Thank you very much for sparing your valuable time. Sir, I will see you at your home this evening for further ‘inputs’ from you regarding the new name.
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