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Bangalore is officially Bengaluru

By Vicky Nanjappa in Bangalore
August 22, 2007 09:39 IST
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It is official now. The silicon city Bangalore will no longer be called Bangalore. Instead, it will officially be called Bengaluru.

So what impact does this name change have on the city and the cosmopolitan crowd that it houses?

The native of Karnataka is happy and says that the name was always Bengaluru, but the British came and changed it.

It is just that the name has been restored, says Ramesh, a shop keeper.

However, the younger generation does not sound too enthusiastic about the name change.

They feel that the image of the city may take a beating worldwide as the name does not sound too appealing or 'modern'.

Bangalore was originally known as Benda Kaluru and then became Bengaluru following which the British renamed it as Bangalore.

Puja Sharma, a BPO employee says that the name is just for official purposes, but they would continue calling it as Bangalore as it sounded better.

"Why do governments change names of cities. I do agree that we should not continue the British legacy, but patriotism is in the heart and not in a name," Sharma says.

Infosys chief mentor Narayan Murthy says that as a Kannadiga, he always referred to the city as Bengaluru and hence this should make no difference.

Businessmen in the city are however not too happy. They say that Bangalore had become a brand name and this change in name may hurt.

Apart from Bangaluru there are other cities in Karnataka too which have got a new name.

Mysore becomes Mysuru, Mangalore is Mangaluru, Hubli is Hubbali, Shimoga is Shivamoga, Chickmagalur is Chickmagaluru, Bellary is Ballary, Hospet is Hosapete, Tumkur is Tumakuru, Gulbarga is Kalaburgi and Kaup has become Kapu.

The change in name of Belgaum to Belagavi has been kept pending by the Union government.

It is said that this is mainly due to fierce border dispute Karnataka has with Maharashtra over Belgaum.

Although there have been mixed reactions to the change in name, politicians have welcomed this with open arms.

Former chief minister of Karnataka N Dharam Singh says that he is happy that the original name has been restored.

The decision to change the names of several places in Karnataka came after pressure had been exerted on the government from local politicians and litterateurs to change the names.

Karnataka finally sent a list of 12 names in 2006 after which clearances from the departments like Survey of India, science and technology, posts and telegraphs and railways had to come through.

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Vicky Nanjappa in Bangalore