Gurgaon, the sprawling suburb outside Delhi dotted with skyscrapers and glistening malls, has undergone a change of name. It will now be called Gurugram.
The Haryana government on Tuesday announced the decision and said it was the result of a long pending demand of the municipal corporation. The Gurgaon Mayor told the Indian Express that the step would bring people closer to the ‘rich heritage’ that Gurgaon once had, but lost eventually due to rapid urbanisation.
Now, if you’re wondering how Gurugram came about, this is the reasoning of the state government.
It is believed that the name is derived from Guru Dronacharya, teacher of the Pandavas in Hindu epic Mahabharata, and that the village was actually offered to him as ‘guru dakshina’ by his students. Guru Dronacharya is believed to have resided here in an ashram with his wife Mata Sheetla. A temple dedicated to Mata Sheetla still exists in old Gurgaon.
Whether the new name will stick on the lips of the city’s residents, only time will tell, but the government decision has already set off murmurs on social media. Many people questioned the name change especially since Gurgaon has been heralded as a ‘Millennium city’ and is home to IT and corporate giants with their plush offices. The name will stand in deep contrast against what the city strives to become, people opined on social media.
There has also been criticism from some quarters that instead of much-needed change in infrastructure and development of roads and highways, precious funds are being routed to symbolic changes in the city.