This Article is From May 18, 2016

Fight Over Akbar Road: Renaming Not On Agenda, Says Minister Venkaiah Naidu

Fight Over Akbar Road: Renaming Not On Agenda, Says Minister Venkaiah Naidu

Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu has said no to renaming Akbar Road as Maharana Pratap Road


  • It's not my agenda to change names of places, says Venkaiah Naidu
  • VK Singh had written saying road should be renamed after Maharana Pratap
  • Akbar Road features the Congress headquarters among other addresses
New Delhi: Demands to rename Akbar Road - one of the most elite addresses in Delhi - have been rebuffed by the government even though some in the ruling BJP, including Union Minister VK Singh, have strongly recommended it.

"It's not on my agenda," Venkaiah Naidu, the Union Urban Development Minister, told NDTV.

At the same time, the minister said there was "unnecessary controversy" over the renaming of Gurgaon as Gurugram recently. "My priority is to improve civic administration. My priority is to make cities a place of better living," he asserted.

VK Singh has written to Mr Naidu that Akbar Road should be renamed after the man who fought Mughal Emperor Akbar - 16th century Rajput king Maharana Pratap. "You would be aware that he was not only instrumental in stopping the might of Mughal king Akbar but he was truly secular and a man of masses," he writes.

Shaina NC, a BJP leader in Maharashtra, seconded the proposal.Veteran actor Rishi Kapoor latched on to the debate with a flurry of tweets protesting against roads and buildings named after members of the Gandhi family.The proposal to rename Akbar Road first came from Haryana Chief Minister ML Khattar last month. Sources in the Urban Development Ministry said: "Suggestions like this should be ignored and cannot be implemented."

Akbar Road is prominent among the tree-shaded avenues crisscrossing the heart of the capital and features the Congress headquarters among other addresses.

Last year, the renaming of the iconic Aurangzeb Road close to Akbar Road caused a sensation on social media and opinion was sharply divided.

Many supported the move to rename the road after former president APJ Abdul Kalam instead of a man known in history as a ruthless ruler. Among them was Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. Critics, however, said the name was a part of history and should stay.  

Sources said renaming Akbar Road cannot be seen in the same league as Aurangzeb was never a popular figure in history and Akbar is widely seen as a great ruler.