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Jammu varsity, airport to be renamed after Dogra monarchs

A file picture of passengers waiting at airline counters at Jammu airport, in Jammu.

A file picture of passengers waiting at airline counters at Jammu airport, in Jammu.   | Photo Credit: AFP

The Jammu Municipal Corporation is on a name-changing spree in the city

The Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) is on a name-changing spree in Jammu city — resolutions have been passed to rename the Jammu Airport and the Jammu University after Hindu Dogra monarchs Maharaja Hari Singh and Maharaja Gulab Singh, respectively.

“Two proposals [to rename Jammu Airport and Jammu University] were passed with full majority during the general house meeting,” Councillor Narotam Sharma said.

BJP in majority

At least two meetings of the JMC’s general house were held last week by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-affiliated councillors to change names of streets and buildings in Jammu. The BJP has a majority of 43 Councillors in the 75-member Municipality.

The resolutions have paved the way for calling the airport Maharaja Hari Singh Jammu Airport and the local university as the Maharaja Gulab Singh Jammu University. “People should know their history and the contribution of the Dogra rulers to J&K,” Mr. Sharma added.

Maharaja Gulab Singh founded the Dogra dynasty and became first monarch of J&K in 1846. Maharaja Hari Singh was the last Dogra monarch, who acceded to India in 1947.

Chowks renamed

Meanwhile, the JMC has already renamed Jammu’s historic City Chowk as Bharat Mata Chowk and the Kachi Chawni Chowk as Atal Bihari Vajpayee Chowk. A bust of the late Prime Minister will be installed at the roundabout soon, according to a JMC proposal.

The name-changing comes at a time when the BJP is facing criticism from the Dogra community over the party’s failure to secure domicile laws on land use and job reservations for locals after the revocation of Articles 370 and 35A on August 5, 2019. Local parties like the J&K Panthers Party has accused the BJP of failing to meet the aspirations of the people of Jammu.

There have been mixed reactions to the name-changing of streets and government buildings in Jammu. “Name changing of prominent places in Jammu after the abolition of Article 370 — [I] have still not understood why,” said lawyer Deepika Singh Rajawat, who pleaded the case of a minor rape victim.

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Printable version | Apr 10, 2020 9:17:17 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/jammu-varsity-airport-to-be-renamed-after-dogra-monarchs/article30964937.ece

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