Monday, October 19, 2009

Lord Hanuman or Rajiv Gandhi?

Lord Hanuman or Rajiv Gandhi?
Controversy is brewing in Rajajinagar over the renaming of a park - earlier named after the late PM - after Lord Hanuman
ATUL CHATURVEDI


Parks in the concrete jungle are symbolic of peace. But the one at Shivanagar near Rajajinagar is turning out to be an antithesis: For, it has actually started a controversy over naming it! Though the park was named after late prime minister Rajiv Gandhi during the previous Congress rule, the latest demand from a section of local leaders is to rename it as Maruti Park, after Lord Hanuman. The renaming campaign is being spearheaded by the devotees of the Hanuman temple located close to the park.
The Hanuman Temple is near the park and quite a few people frequent it for their morning and evening walk. “We thought instead of Rajiv Gandhi, the park should be named after Lord Maruti and called Maruti Udyanavan. We have given a representation to BBMP officials but they are yet to consider our demand,” said a member attached to the temple.
Ironically, the park made headlines when a Rs 35 crore special package was announced for it four years ago. An amusement park was supposed to come up at the site and Rs 5 crore was allotted in 2006. But after a few improvements, work on the amusement park stopped and, subsequently, the project was cancelled.
With BJP coming to power in the state, members of the temple management have given a proposal to BBMP to rename the park.
But not everyone is enthused. Former councillor H Ramkrishnaiah of Ward No-20 said, “We had passed a resolution in the BBMP council on Aug 31, 2006 stating that the park should be named after Rajiv Gandhi. Now it has come to my knowledge that some people don’t want this to happen. I have taken objection to this and submitted a representation to the administrator. If at all the name of the park is changed, I will protest against it.”
Meanwhile, Urban Development and Law Minister Suresh Kumar told Bangalore Mirror that the plan to rename the park after Lord Hanuman was under consideration. “The BBMP had scrapped the proposal to develop the park as an amusement park. If the residents want an amusement park now, we can consider it again. Locals want the park to be renamed after Lord Hanuman and it is under the BBMP’s consideration.”
WHY NOT RAJIV?
Asked if he had any objection to the park being named after the late PM, Suresh Kumar said, “There are 450 streets and localities named after Rajiv Gandhi in India. I am not against the name of the person. Bangalore too has a Rajiv Gandhi circle. But people attached to Hanuman Temple want the park to be named after Lord Maruti.”

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