Hoshangabad will become Narmadapuram: The politics of changing names

Another old name goes. Hoshangabad will become Narmadapuram, promises Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan recently. The aim is obviously to get some political mileage and votes (though election is quite far).

Surely Narmada is a holy river and considered sacred. Residents of Hoshnagabad district specially revere the River. But will it improve the life of Narmadapuram residents? Hoshang Shah's name can't be erased from history and neither his beautiful tomb that is located in Mandu.

It would not put off Muslims as the minority population is nearly insignificant in Hoshangabad. BJP is quite strong in the district. The final decision may be taken a year later so that it could translate into votes. We are not exactly happy with the decision though we have no love for Hoshang Shah either. Government should focus more on issues than naming and renaming exercises that are more or less futile.

From Vande Mataram to Surya Namaskar

The Shivraj Singh Chouhan government can't remain away from controversy for long. First, it forced everybody and sing Vande Mataram and even expected Muslim madarsa students to do the same.

It caused a major controversy. Now a similar controversy over Surya Namaskar. The High Court had to say that nobody can be forced to perform the Surya Namaskar. Can't the state government leave the government school kids alone.

After all schools run by Christian missionaries don't pay heed to government and the poor children who sit on the 'taat-patti' and are denied proper education, are expected to come to all government functions to fill the vacant grounds, stadiums and make rallies successful.

Madhya Pradesh Lokayukta in high-mode

Madhya Pradesh Lokayukta is in a high-mode. Buoyed by the Supreme Court decision in Prakash Singh Badal case, the Lokayukta police presented charge sheet agaisnt BJP State minister Jugal Kishor Bagri and MP Ganesh Singh for irregularities in the appointment of Shikshakarmis.

Now it plans to charge-sheet the bureaucrats as well. Sources say that IAS Vinod Semwal is next in the line. More chargesheets would follow soon. Earlier, the state government did not permit the Lokayukta to present charge sheet. However, with the Supreme Court verdict, the situation has changed.

Besides, cases against high-profile officials are also being registered. The latest being a case against Chhattisgarh IG Mukesh Gupta. Gupta, the then IG Ujjain, had made phone calls costing Rs 1.25 lakh, in a week. He had later paid the bills but the then DGP SC Tripathi had deemed it fit as case of 'income disproportionate to known sources of earnings'. Now the Lokayukta has booked Gupta, who is IG (Home Guards) at Chhattisgarh.

The website of Lokayukta is www.mplokayukt.nic.in

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