Nearly two years after a resolution was passed in the Maharashtra Assembly, Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport has finally been rechristened as Chhatrapati Shivaji ‘Maharaj’ International Airport. Confirming the development, Union Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu on Thursday said the long-pending demand of the state had been fulfilled.
“Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport is now Chhatrapati Shivaji ‘Maharaj’ International Airport. Congratulations to the people of Maharashtra, the long pending demand is now fulfilled. I thank Prime Minister Narendra Modi ji for the concern towards the sentiments of the people of Maharashtra,” Prabhu tweeted.
Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport is now Chhatrapati Shivaji ‘Maharaj’ International Airport. Congratulations to the people of Maharashtra,the long pending demand is now fulfilled.I thank PM @narendramodi ji for the concern towards the sentiments of the ppl of Maharashtra
— Suresh Prabhu (@sureshpprabhu) August 30, 2018
The Maharashtra government on December 8 decided to insert the word ‘Maharaj’ to the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport and the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus as it felt the Maratha warrior king deserved to be paid more respect. A proposal was passed in the Assembly and forwarded to the Centre in December 2016.
While the change was immediately made by the then Railway Minister, the change in airport name had been pending. The request to add the word ‘Maharaj’ was made by Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) MP Sambhaji Raje Chhatrapati, who is also the 13th descendant of Maratha warrior king Chhatrapati Shivaji.
Mumbai’s airport was formerly known as Sahar International Airport. It was renamed as Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in 1999. The airport’s renaming will mean that airport authorities will have to make a lot of changes, from informing the International Air Transport Association (IATA) to changing all the boards on the airport premises. The civic authorities will also have to change the signage on the city roads that lead to the international airport.