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Business News/ Politics / Congress' Shashi Tharoor’s ‘happy to agree with govt’ amid India vs Bharat row: Here’s why
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Congress' Shashi Tharoor’s ‘happy to agree with govt’ amid India vs Bharat row: Here’s why

The Opposition has claimed that the Centre wants to change India's name to 'Bharat', but in 2015 the government said ‘no change needed’

Shashi Tharoor said while there is no constitutional objection to calling India 'Bharat' (PTI)Premium
Shashi Tharoor said while there is no constitutional objection to calling India 'Bharat' (PTI)

As the alleged India renaming row rages on with the Opposition claiming that the Central government will introduce a proposal to change the name India to ‘Bharat’, Congress Thiruvananthapuram MP Shashi Tharoor has shared a 2015 incident when the Centre told the Supreme Court that there was no need to change the name of the country.

Responding to a public interest litigation (PIL) that India be called Bharat officially and unofficially, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) told the Supreme Court that there was no need for it. The Centre had said, “There is no change in circumstances to consider any changes in Article 1 of the Constitution of India."

Article 1.1 of the Constitution recognises both ‘Bharat’ and ‘India’ as two official names of the country. It states: “India, that is Bharat, shall be a Union of States."

Sharing a news article on the 2015 incident, Shashi Tharoor said, “No comment. Happy to agree with the Government on this!"

Invitations for a G20 dinner that were sent out by President Droupadi Murmu describing her position as 'President of Bharat' instead of the customary 'President of India' triggered a massive furore with the Opposition alleging that the Narendra Modi government is planning to drop India and stay with just Bharat as the country's name.

In response, the ruling NDA alliances accused the Opposition bloc of opposing the name ‘Bharat’.

Shashi Tharoor said while there is no constitutional objection to calling India 'Bharat', he hopes the government will not be so "foolish" to completely dispense with 'India' which has "incalculable brand value". “We should continue to use both words rather than relinquish our claim to a name redolent of history, a name that is recognised around the world," he said.

Shashi Tharoor said that it was Pakistan's founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah who had objected to the name 'India' since it implied that "our country was the successor state to the British Raj and Pakistan a seceding state".

The Congress leader said, "While the subject is live, let's recall that it was Jinnah who objected to the name 'India' since it implied that our country was the successor state to the British Raj and Pakistan a seceding state. As with CAA, the BJP govt keeps supporting Jinnah's view!"

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Published: 06 Sep 2023, 07:12 AM IST
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