What's in a name as long as park is protected

Updated: Mar 16, 2020, 07:16 IST | The Editorial | Mumbai

While one is quite sure that it will remain Shivaji Park in the minds of locals, the name change should once again remind us about where our focus should be

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Park
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Park

Shivaji Park will now be known as Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Park after the proposal for the renaming of the ground was presented and approved in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation's (BMC) general body meeting recently. The proposal was unanimously approved by all corporators.

Shivaji Park was opened to the public by the BMC in 1925. It was originally called Mahim Park. A proposal to name the ground Shivaji Park was approved on May 10, 1927, in the BMC. Then history took another turn, as 93 years after, a proposal for the re-renaming of Shivaji Park was tabled and approved.

While one is quite sure that it will remain Shivaji Park in the minds of locals, the name change should once again remind us about where our focus should be. Respect for history and culture is important but even more vital is how we maintain our maidans.

Our energies should be towards saving open spaces within the city. Shivaji Park or Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj Park should remain open not only as a nursery for Indian cricket, but to so many sportsmen who use the space for different sports. We must see that the bowl of green and the track outside are for Mumbaikars to use for sport and fitness. Pieces and parts of this ground should not be usurped by politicians or builders or any land sharks for personal gain.

The open ground should not be continually used to host programmes of any religious persuasion. Maintain the green cover it gives us, become stakeholders in its beautification and respect it as an already existent, precious facility to be preserved and enjoyed not only by us but generations to come. Renaming is one thing, ensuring that open spaces do not disappear should be responsibility and priority No 1.

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