New Delhi: A BJP lawmaker has created a controversy by demanding that Aurangzeb Road in Lutyen's Delhi be renamed after former President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, in a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday.
"As a tribute to the People's President, I hereby propose to rename the 'Aurangzeb Road' in New Delhi to 'Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Road'. In my opinion, this will be a great way of preserving his memories and legacy forever," wrote Mahesh Girri.
Twitter handles too, were abuzz with topics like, "Let us name Aurangzeb Road APJ Kalam Marg, as Aurangzeb was ruthless ruler." Many opposed the move, saying that renaming a road cannot change India's history.
Speaking to NDTV, Mr Girri today said, "Do we ever name our children by the name of a devil... We can't change history but we can try to correct some wrongs."
Some historians have disapproved of such changes. An author of books on Delhi's history and monuments, Narayani Gupta said, "This kind of mania for renaming is a lazy option. I agree with Dr Gopal Gandhi, why not name something which was connected with Dr Kalam's interest."
Earlier, author and former diplomat who also served as Governor, Gopal Gandhi had said, "Renaming roads is the tribute of inertia to opportunism. President Kalam's memory should not be given the stale homage of an old road named anew but a new creation in fields where he was the undoubted pioneer."
This is not the first time that such a demand has been made. In 2014, the Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee had petitioned PM Modi to change the name of Aurangzeb Road to Guru Teg Bahadur Sahib Road.
Aurangzeb was the sixth Mughal Emperor who ruled over most of the Indian subcontinent in the 17th century.