Monday, January 09, 2006

Renaming Rules

All of a sudden, many cities in Karnataka have been bitten by the renaming bug – Bangalore (Bengaluru), Belgaum (Belagavi), Hubli (Hubballi) etc. In order to make things easier for the beleagured administration, especially in namma / aamchi (depending on how the state borders are delineated) Belagavi, here are a set of easy rules for renaming cities.

1. In order to conserve both time and energy while speaking, the new name must possess the same number of syllables as the old name; e.g Bombay to Mumbai, Madras to Chennai.
2. Oops ! Not Madras to Chennai. This rule would allow the renaming of Bombay to Mumbai, but not allow the change from Madras to Chennai.
In order to minimize unnecessary expenditure on buying new signboards, the new name must possess the same number of letters as the old name, so that the old signboards can be easily painted over. Yes, one could use a smaller font on the old signboard and fit in a longer name, but if common sense ruled, would there be this renaming drive at all?
3. Rule 3 also vetoes the Madras to Chennai change. On account of public convenience, there must be at least some similarity in the way the names sound - except in the case of godforsaken places that no outsider could conceivably ever visit. (On second thoughts, maybe this rule does allow for the Madras to Chennai change.)
4. Rule no. 4 – KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid. No tongue-twisters – Cochin to Kozhikode not allowed. If people from at least five other Indian states cannot pronounce it, it is vetoed. (p.s. Cochin to Kozhikode also violates each of rules 1, 2 and 3.)
5. Restrict the craze. Nothing less than a few hectares across and having a population of over a lakh can be renamed. No renaming roads/ crossings/flyovers/gardens/staircases/garages etc. If the person is not important enough to have a large area named after him/her, he /she does not deserve to inflict on our already chaotic lives any further confusion.
6. No new name of more than two words and/or ten syllables – thus ruling out the Hazrat Makhdoom Faquih Ali Mahimi flyover (erstwhile JJ flyover).
7. No more than ten different entities in the country can have the same name. No more ‘Chhatrapati Shivaji’ Terminus / Airport / Kila / Sangrahalaya/ Paathshala etc etc etc.
8. All inhabitants living within the renamed area have to follow the renaming rules for their names too.
So Banaglore to Bengaluru would be endorsed by Dharam Singhu, Deve Gowdu and U R Ananthamurthu.
Bombay to Mumbai would be endorsed by Mal Thackerai (hmmm has anyone in Bollywood thought of him this way yet ?) and supported by Marad Pawai ( the surname suits him – bet his morals are as polluted as the lake by the same name).

By ,
Zenobu from Bengaluru.
With contributions from,
Anitai of Chennai.

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