The iconic Teen Murti Chowk and the Teen Murti Marg here will now be known after the Israeli city Haifa with the NDMC approving their renaming ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the Jewish nation. The New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) today took a decision in this regard at a meeting presided over by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. This is the second renaming of a road approved by the NDMC within a month– and fifth in two years.
The civic body had renamed Park Street earlier this month after Bangladesh’s founder Sheikh Mujibur Rahman ahead of that country’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s India visit. “The Teen Murti Chowk will now be known as ‘Teen Murti Haifa Chowk’ and the Teen Murti Marg will be known as ‘Teen Murti Haifa Marg’. The decision was taken unanimously in today’s council meeting,” a senior NDMC official told PTI.
The Israeli city, which these places are being named after, was liberated from the Ottoman occupation by Indian soldiers during the First World War.
Large number of Indian soldiers of the 15th Imperial Service Cavalry Brigade died during the battle and nearly 900 are buried in Israel, the official said. Modi is likely to visit Israel in July, which will be the first by an Indian Prime Minister, as the two countries celebrate 25 years of diplomatic relations.
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Every year, September 23 is celebrated as Haifa Day in India and Israel as a mark of respect to the soldiers who lost their lives in the battle and to mark the end to 400 years of the Turkish control over the city. Demands to rename the two have been made over the past few years by different organisations, including the RSS.
Senior RSS functionary Indresh Kumar had demanded in 2015 that the government acknowledge the role played by the three regiments of the Indian Army in the Battle of Haifa in 1918.
According to the Ministry of Culture, a “wrong impression” has been built about the Teen Murti Chowk that it has something to do with Mahatma Gandhi. “The Teen Murti Chowk was named to mark the role of the three cavalry regiments. But no one knows this today. The moment people think of the Teen Murti they think of Gandhiji’s monkeys. This is a wrong impression that needs to be corrected,” it had earlier said.
In 2015, Aurangzeb Road was renamed as APJ Abdul Kalam Road. Race Course Road, where the prime minister’s residence is located, was renamed as Lok Kalyan Marg last year.
Earlier this year, the civic body had renamed Dalhousie Road as Dara Shikoh Road after the elder brother of Mughal emperor Aurangzeb.