Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. (Source: Shiv Sena)
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday said Shivaji University in Kolhapur should be renamed Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vidyapeeth. Thackeray said all institutions should use the full name of the warrior king to show their highest reverence while hinting that Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport may also be renamed to include ‘Maharaj’.
“The Shivaji University in Kolhapur should be renamed Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vidyapeeth... We have to show proper respect towards Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, who is highly revered and worshipped in Maharashtra... It is improper to address the university by just the first name of Shivaji. We have to give it his full name. Similarly, Mumbai International Airport, named after Chhatrapati Shivaji, should also incorporate the word Maharaj,” the chief minister said.
Thackeray reportedly has sent a request to Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari, who is also the university’s vice-chancellor, to initiate legal processes that are mandatory for renaming or expansion of the existing name of any educational institute.
The chief minister also said that social reformer Jyotiba Phule, should henceforth be addressed as Mahatma Jyotiba Phule, and Sambhaji referred to as Chhatrapati Sambhaji Maharaj. “All the institutions named after social reformers will have to use the full name,” he added.
Last year, the Devendra Fadnavis-led state government had made it mandatory to incorporate the word “Maharaj” while addressing Chhatrapati Shivaji. All the institutions named after Shivaji were also informed to change their names to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj.