The decision to change the name of Aurangzeb Road - located in the heart of Lutyens’ Delhi—after former president APJ Abdul Kalam, is likely to cause an existential crisis for many government establishments, five-star hotels and private addresses.
The Claridges, 12 Aurangzeb Road, New Delhi- 110011, has been the address which one of the oldest five-star hotels in the city has been carrying in their boards and websites since 1952, and changing the address might affect their business, said a hotel manager.
“We get tourists from across the globe and the change in the address might create a misunderstanding that the hotel itself has been shifted. We have taken this up with the authorities concerned. Hopefully our concerns will be taken care of,” the manager said.
The problem will be graver for foreign tourists because the address for the hotel is particularly important for them to reach from the airport to the hotel to not be cheated by taxi drivers.
“The authorities may suddenly decide to change the name of the road but we will have to change our address on all the documents and that will require time. What will our guests do till then?” the manager asked.
The administration also said that changing the address on the official website and documents will be a tedious process which they will have to undertake “for no fault of their own”.
A similar concern was voiced by officials at Nagaland House, situated near the Race Course metro station.
“We get plenty of guests and dignitaries from Nagaland and the sudden change of address will create confusion,” Daniel Woba, an official, said.
The controversy on the name change has also garnered international attention on social media. Tarek Fateh, a Canada-based commentator of Pakistani origin, had posted the query about the status of the name change to BJP New Delhi MP Meenakshi Lekhi.
“The name stands changed but the minutes of the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) meeting needs to be finalized after which the information will be sent to the ministry of home affairs (MHA). Will keep you posted,” Lekhi posted in reply.
The process is likely to take another month to be officially cleared.
The road also houses many influential industrialists and socialites who will also be affected by the name change.
The decision by the New Delhi Municipal Council had attracted its fair share of controversy with many groups welcoming the decision while several others opposing saying Dr Kalam deserved a better memorial.