A plea urging Delhi High Court to restrain NDMC from changing name of Aurangzeb Road to APJ Abdul Kalam Road was made by a lawyer today, who said the decision was the outcome of “sick and communal politics” and “lacks understanding of history”.
The plea also sought the court’s order to restrain New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) from issuing notification with regard to changing the historical name.
“The NDMC in utter violation of law and procedure, instead of naming a new road in memory of Late APJ Abdul Kalam has renamed an historical road known as Aurangzeb Road to be known as APJ Abdul Kalam Road.
“Pertinently, the guidelines for naming/renaming of roads, streets, villages, towns etc and installation of statues/memorials to followed by state names authority, Delhi, provides that the name of existing streets, road etc will normally not be changed. Only new streets, roads etc will be considered for being named after eminent personalities,” the plea said.
“Names which are part of history will not be altered. All proposals for renaming will be referred to the Ministry of Home Affairs in accordance with instructions in letter dated September 27, 1975,” it said.
The PIL filed by advocate Shahid Ali stated that the “act of altering the historical name is nothing but an outcome of sick and communal politics, which should not be allowed to have any place in India for its being a beautiful, secular and democratic republic and which is known for its unity in diversity and which is the homes of thousand religious, cultural, social and political beliefs.”
The request to change the name of the road, made by BJP MPs Mahesh Giri and Meenakshi Lekhi and the trade wing secretary of Aam Aadmi Party, was accepted by the NDMC on August 28.
The plea said the intentions of NDMC and the responsible persons behind the move are “malafide and the decision is the outcome of sick politics and lacks understanding of history”.
“Since, the move of renaming appears to be politically motivated and do undermine the contribution of Aurangzeb towards the unification of India, the petitioner feels that the said move will bring bad name and fame to the greatness of India and therefore, the name and secular image of India will suffer adversely,” it said.
The move of NDMC to change a historical name was “bound to adversely affect the image of India as a secular and justice imparting country and which is known for its unique feature and characteristic,” it added.