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Business News/ Politics / News/  ‘Prime Minister of Bharat’: Sambit Patra shares invitation of PM Modi's Indonesia visit amid India's name change rumour

‘Prime Minister of Bharat’: Sambit Patra shares invitation of PM Modi's Indonesia visit amid India's name change rumour

BJP leaders support using 'President of Bharat' as the country's name; speculation of name change during parliament session. Opposition accuses the government of assaulting the idea of the 'Union of States'.

BJP leader Sambit Patra. (ANI)Premium
BJP leader Sambit Patra. (ANI)

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra on Tuesday shared official information regarding Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to Indonesia for the 20th ASEAN-India and the 18th East Asia summits in which he has been referred to as the ‘Prime Minister of Bharat’.

The reference to PM Modi Modi as the "Prime Minister of Bharat" comes close on the heels of a G20 invite for a Presidential dinner on September 9 in the name of the “President of Bharat". 

This triggered a row as opposition parties alleged that the central government is planning to drop India and stay with just Bharat as the country's name. Customarily, in English, the country is referred to as India.

Senior BJP leaders and ministers have cheered the move by the Rashtrapati Bhavan with Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar asking what is the problem with using "President of Bharat" as the country is also Bharat.

It also fuelled the speculation that the issue of changing the name of the country could come up during the five-day special session of Parliament beginning September 18. 

Opposition leaders, including Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh, who first highlighted the development, accused the government of assaulting the idea of the country being a "Union of States", as mentioned in the Constitution which describes the country as "India, that is Bharat".

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said, "So the news is indeed true. Rashtrapati Bhawan has sent out an invite for a G20 dinner on 9 September in the name of ‘President of Bharat’ instead of the usual ‘President of India’."Now, Article 1 in the Constitution can read: Bharat, that was India, shall be a Union of States."

The row came four days after Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat made a strong pitch for using Bharat instead of India.

Addressing an event in Guwahati on 1 September, Bhagwat said the country’s name as Bharat has continued since ancient times and must be taken forward. 

“The name of our country has been Bharat for ages. Whatever may be the language, the name remains the same," the RSS chief said.


(With PTI inputs)

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Published: 06 Sep 2023, 06:33 AM IST
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