Is Agra next for a name change?
Agra : After change in the names of Allahabad, Faizabad and Mughal Sarai, speculation is rife if Agra would be next in the series. The buzz started after Dr Bhim Rao Ambedkar University here received a letter from the UP government to find out if Agra was known by any other name.
Consequently, the university’s department of history has begun research on the subject to reply to the letter.
It may be recalled that a demand had been made in the past to name Agra as ‘Agravan’ after Maharaja Agrasen, much respected and revered by the Agarwal community which in dominance here. Late Jagan Prasad Garg, who had won five time from Agra North assembly seat dominated by Agarwals, had in the past forwarded a letter to the UP government, asking that the name of Agra be changed to Agravan.
“We have received a letter from the state government to look for historical evidence if Agra city was known by any other name. We have begun the research and will reply to the letter,” confirmed Prof Sugam Anand, head of the department of history in Dr BR Ambedkar University of Agra.
Prof Anand, however, distanced himself from any speculation about change in the name of Agra.
“We have merely been asked for historical facts related to name of Agra in the past and we are just complying with the same. There is nothing more than that,” he clarified.
However, the letter has revived the debate because change in the name of Agra is an old issue. Those who want it named as ‘Agravan’ have been placing their argument in support of it since long but many others call Agra as Akbarabad after Emperor Akbar, who made it as the capital of the Mughal Empire.
Tourism trade pundits have reservations on any move for a change in the name of Agra because it is known worldwide as the city which houses Taj Mahal, a major attraction for foreigners visiting India.