Today I am going to talk about India being renamed to Bharat.
“Sometimes you don’t realize how good the good old days were until they are gone.”
This thought takes me back to my childhood on various road trips that I took with my family. One thing that always excited me was to see the trucks honking awaywhile I waited eagerly to see what slogan was written on its back. " Bharat Mata ki Jai" and "India is Great" definitely tops the list.
As India is about to be renamed to Bharat despite some harsh resistance from the opposition, let us deep dive into the various facets of this decision by the Central Government.
" Bharat" is an ancient Sanskrit word and is derived from the word "Bharata" and has ties to early Hindu scriptures. It also finds mention in Mahabharata and Puranas where the country was referred to as "Bharatvarsh".
The references are endless and do remain a topic of debate amongst historians and archaeologists.
India on the other hand is a more recent word that comes from the word Indus or the Indus river. Early Greeks and Iranians generally used it while referring to the country.
The name change news is also making waves globally. In fact during G20 summitheld at New Delhi, Shrimati Draupadi Murmu was referred to as the President of Bharat as opposed to President of India in the state dinner invitation . Similarly the country name card in front of Shri Narendra Modi was mentioned as Bharat as well.
As per the reports government is likely to bring a resolution for changing India's official name to Bharat during the special session of the Parliament scheduled from September 18th -22nd, which requires two third of the majority.
But since Bharat is now being used in a variety of Government communication, one can easily assume that the name change is inevitable.
The opposition has called this entire exercise as absurd and suggesting that BJP is rattled by the name of the INDIA Block and hence this decision. Rahul Gandhi has referred this move as no other than a diversionary tactic.
Now if we look at the global scenario, in recent years few other countries have changed their names as well.
First one that comes to my mind is Turkey. Recently became Turkiye.
"The word ‘Türkiye’ represents and expresses the culture, civilisation, and values of the Turkish nation in the best way," said the Turkish President. He added that it was a better representation of the nation rather than the name of a bird.
Similary Czech Republic has also been renamed to Czechia. Though Czech Republic is still the official name their government prefers the name Czechia.
Now to address the elephant in the room, one wonders how much will it cost to rebrand India as Bharat and the necessity of it.
From making changes to government documents to maps and highway landmarks, and then publicising the rebranding, everything would entail a cost for the country.
Cost to the nation is essentially a cost to its citizens
Experts have cited that an exercise like this would incur a massive financial cost, even for the world’s fifth-largest economy.
While changing a country’s name might appear merely symbolic, such a move would mean significant changes at local, national, and international levels.
The rough estimate of this comes to around Rs 14,000 crore using IP Lawyer Darren Oliver's formula as per Outlook Business Magazine. This is only a close estimate and may change depending on how much the government will spend on publicizing this move.
Signing off I am reminded of the famous quote by William Shakespeare " What's in a name?" . Turns out around Rs 14000 crores and counting!!
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Mera Bharat Mahan | Deep Dive by Saimik Sen | Herald Global