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With Kartavya Path, Will Modi Change Rules Of Engagement With Lutyens?

A day ahead of unveiling its Central Vista project, the Modi Government shed one more colonial baggage by renaming Rajpath as Kartavya Path. Known as Kingsway in honour of King George V, the arterial road connecting Rashtrapathi Bhavan and India Gate was built in 1911. The name change was formalized at a special session of the New Delhi Municipal Council on September 7 and it came a day ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurating the entire stretch that has been renovated under the ambitious Central Vista redevelopment project. The renaming is in keeping with PM’s Independence Day speech this year when he called for abolishing symbols that reflect the colonial mindset. In this renaming there is also a message to the ruling class “that the era of rulers and subjects is over”. Modi has been working on changing the landscape of Lutyens’ Delhi ever since his first 2014 mandate. In 2015, Aurangzeb Road was renamed APJ Abdul Kalam Road. In 2017, Dalhousie Road was renamed Dara Shikoh Road. Also, Teen Murti Chowk was changed to Teen Murti Haifa Chowk in 2018. The revamped Central Vista Avenue along the Rajpath will have state-wise food stalls, red granite walkways with greenery all around, vending zones, parking lots and round-the-clock security. The moot point is with the kartavya path will Modi change rules of engagement with the Lutyens?