Months after Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Siddharth Nath Singh recommended that the name of Allahabad should be changed to Prayag, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on Saturday said that the name of the city will be changed to Prayag Raj if there’s consensus on the same.
News agency ANI quoted the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister as saying, “Ganga aur Yamuna do pavitra nadi ka sangam ka sthal hone ke nate yahan sabhi prayago ka raaj hai, isiliye Allahabad ko Prayag raj bhi kehte hain (Two holy rivers, Ganga and Yamuna, join in Allahabad and hence there’s ‘raj’ of all ‘prayag’ (confluence of rivers). And therefore, Allahabad is also known as Prayag Raj)”.
The BJP strongman further said, “Agar sab ki sehmati hogi toh Prayag Raj ke roop mein humein is shehar ko jaan na chahiye (If everyone agrees then this city should be known by the name of Prayag Raj).”
The move was initiated in July when BJP leader Siddharth Nath Singh wrote to Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik proposing a change in the name of Allahabad.
Speaking to news agency ANI, Singh had said, “Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik (then MP from Maharashtra) had helped 'Bombay' to be renamed as 'Mumbai'. I have written to him to consider renaming Allahabad as 'Prayag'.”
Allahabad is considered the oldest living city in the country after Varanasi. As per the 2011 census, Allahabad was the seventh most populous city in Uttar Pradesh.
The name Prayag comes from the popular Sangam, confluence of Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati rivers. The city holds religious significance for members of Hindu community as it hosts the grand Mahakumbh.
One of the other popular destinations in the city is Anand Bhavan, which was constructed by Motilal Nehru. While it was initially the home of Nehru family, it later became the office of Indian National Congress. However, it was donated to the government of India by then prime minister Indira Gandhi in 1970. It is currently a museum.