Bangalore is now officially Bengaluru. Twelve cities in Karnataka woke up to new names on Saturday, which is also the 59th Karnataka Rajyotsava.
The state government issued a special gazette notification on Friday to bring the new names into effect from Saturday. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah reportedly announced the change of names of the 12 cities, from his residence, according to The Hindu.
Now, Mangalore will be called Mangaluru, Bellary will be called Ballari, Belgaum will be called Belagavi, Hubli has become Hubballi, Tumkur is Tumakuru, Bijapur has changed to Vijapura, Chikmagalur to Chikkamagaluru, Gulbarga to Kalaburagi, Hospet to Hosapete and Shimoga will now be known as Shivamogga.
Bengaluru is said to be a derivation from the older name Benda-Kaal-Uru, which means 'the city of boiled beans'.
"We have changed the names. It is now left to institutions and government bodies to make suitable changes," law and parliamentary affairs minister T.B. Jayachandra was quoted saying by The Hindu.
While authorities have suggested that institutions must adopt the new names, some, such as the Bangalore University, are not keen.
"The name change applies only to cities and not to the institution," Bangalore University vice-chancellor B Thimme Gowda told The New Indian Express. "When names of cities like Madras and Bombay were changed, university names remained the same," he said.
Gowda added that the university had not received any communication on this from the government.
The central government approved the renaming of 12 Karnataka cities on 17 October, eight years after the first proposal by the state government was put forth. The ministry of home affairs formally cleared the proposal.
It was late Jnanpith awardee U R Ananthamurthy who first brought up the idea of renaming Bangalore during Karnataka's golden jubilee in December 2005, which he suggested to then chief minister N Dharam Singh.
"I want Brand Bangalore to become Brand Bengaluru. I want the distinctive Kannada syllable 'u' to be on the lips of people all over the world. Let this bit of 'ourness' be part of our international presence," Ananthamurthy, who passed away in August, had said, as reported by Bangalore Mirror.
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