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India changes Muslim name of historic city from Allahabad to Prayagraj

Authorities in India’s most populous state have changed the Muslim name of a historic city to one with Hindu overtones, local media reported.

 

Authorities in India’s most populous state have changed the Muslim name of a historic city to one with Hindu overtones, local media reported.

Allahabad, a city of more than one million people in northern Uttar Pradesh (UP) state, will now be known as Prayagraj, a senior official from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) told reporters on Tuesday.

Siddarth Nath Singh, UP health minister, said the decision to rename the city was made at a cabinet meeting following a proposal by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who heads the state.

“All the cabinet members were happy and from today onwards, Allahabad’s name would change as Prayagraj,” he was quoted as saying by the Indian Express newspaper.

The city, home of India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and located 650km southeast of the Indian capital New Delhi, was named Allahabad by Muslim Mughal rulers in the 16th century.

Its new name, Prayagraj, refers to the confluence of the Ganges and Yamuna rivers, the site of the Hindu mega-festival Kumbh Mela, which is to take place in January.

 

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