Chor Basai no more: Villages with derogatory names to be renamed respectably
Some of the villages renamed last year include those with names that are colloquial terms derogatory to women, transgenders or the Scheduled Castes.india Updated: Feb 18, 2018 09:08 IST
The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has approved the renaming of several villages whose names were considered by the local population to be derogatory to a particular gender or community or simply having a negative connotation.
The government is considering applications from several others for the same, according to government officials and documents seen by Hindustan Times.
The documents show that the MHA, which has to sign off on the name changes, received 30 applications from state and Union Territory administrations last year, including eight from Rajasthan and five each from Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. It cleared 21 and is still evaluating nine.
A senior home ministry official said on condition of anonymity: “The proposals for changing names are first sent by local administration to the state government. The state government does a basic check on whether the proposal is backed by popular public sentiment and if it is, the same is forwarded to the (home) ministry”.
According to government officials, some of the villages renamed last year include those with names that are colloquial terms derogatory to women, transgenders or the Scheduled Castes. Some of the villages concerned were small, with a population of around 700, the officials added.
According to the documents, the Haryana government proposed changing the name of Chamar Khera in Hisar district to Sundar Khera. The Chamars are a Dalit community.
The ministry approved the name of another Haryana village, Kinnar, to Gaiba Nagar; the former is considered a derogatory word for the transgender community. Another village in Fatehbad district of Haryana, Ganda, which means dirty in Hindi, was rechristened Ajit Nagar. And the ministry allowed Nachania (a word used to unkindly refer to professional dancers) in Bihar to become Kashipur.
It also approved the change of Rajasthan’s Chor Basai to simply Basai. Chor means thief in Hindi. Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Kerala, Karnataka and Nagaland are the other states that sent in applications for a name change.
First Published: Feb 18, 2018 07:30 IST