Decision to rename Dyal Singh Evening college put on hold
The BJP-led government at the Centre on Tuesday put on hold the decision to rename Delhi University's Dyal Singh Evening college to Vande Mataram Mahavidyalaya, following a strong objection by the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD).
Speaking on the issue, SAD MP Naresh Gujral had earlier in Rajya Sabha said that "to change the name of a minority institution was a direct assault on the feelings of Sikhs".
"Decision to change Dyal Singh Evening College's name to Vande Mataram Mahavidyalaya has been put on hold, we must ensure anyone's sentiments are not hurt," ANI quoted Union Human Resource Development (HRD) minister Prakash Javadekar as saying.
The governing body of Dyal Singh College had in November passed a resolution to change the name of the erstwhile evening college to 'Vande Mataram Mahavidyalaya '.
Union Minister and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leader Harsimrat Kaur Badal had on November 25 strongly objected to the decision, calling it as 'shocking and unacceptable'.
The chairperson of Dyal Singh College's governing body on November 18 asserted that the new name 'Vande Mataram Mahavidyalaya' is an inspiring name for the college.
"Notification was issued that Executive Council approved Dyal Singh evening college becoming a full-fledged day college. Then we had to give it a new and inspiring name, we decided it should be 'Vande Mataram Mahavidyalaya'," a governing body member had said.
"It was passed unanimously. But some started protesting saying that it is not acceptable? Why so? Everybody in this universe is because of his/her mother," he added.
"Unacceptable and shocking. The person who is so keen to change name must change his own name, he can put all his wealth to create something and give it whatever name he wants. How can you take away the legacy of someone else?" Harsimrat Badal, who is the Food Processing Minister in the NDA government, had said on November 25. Harsimrat said that even Pakistan has recognised the contibution of Sardar Deen Dayal Singh Majithia, adding, "colleges are being run on his name (in Pakistan)".
Punjab CM Amarinder Singh had also opposed the move
Punjab Chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh opposed the move and took to Twitter to express his disagreement with the name change decision
"Strongly oppose renaming of Dyal Singh College as #vandemataramcollege. Founder Dyal Singh Majithia was a progressive visionary. We should preserve his great legacy instead of indulging in petty name changing games," he had tweeted last month.
Sukhbir Badal had called for PM's intervention
Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal had asked for Prime Minister Narendra Modi's intervention in the matter. Delhi BJP legislator Manjinder Singh Sirsa had earlier filed a police complaint against the college's principal and chairman over the name change.
Even the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) passed a resolution against the move, stating that it has hurt the sentiment of Sikhs.
NSUI had also criticised the re-naming
The Congress' student wing NSUI criticised the move, saying the governing board should have focused on improving the college infrastructure rather than changing its name. Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said the BJP was still stuck in the past, instead of making efforts to create a better future for the students.