Kodagu (Karnataka) [India]: Locals from Karnataka’s Kodagu district have sent a petition to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and the Karnataka Chief Minister urging for the renaming of the Rajiv Gandhi National Park to General Cariappa National Park after Field Marshal KM Cariappa who hails from Kodagu.
Naveen Mandappa and Vinay Kayapanda from Kodagu district of Karnataka have sent the petition, which they claim has been signed by over 6.000 people.
The petition comes just days after the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award was renamed as Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award.
Naveen Mandappa said, “Formerly known as Nagarahole National Reserve Forest was changed to Rajiv Gandhi National Park Nagarahole just to appease a particular family and its party. Why should it not be renamed to its past name or named after the first General of India who was from Kodagu. If it is renamed as General Cariappa National Park then this will be a great honour to the great generals of Kodagu. It will also be an honour to the Indian Army.
“As of now, the petition carries 6,280 signatures. If we go through the comments, most of them have agreed with the content and context of the petition,” added Mandappa.
General KM Carriappa was the first Indian Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army. He led the Army on the Western Front during the Indo-Pakistani War in 1947. General Carriappa was the recipient of the title of Field Marshal of India.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday announced that the Khel Ratna award will now be called the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award. The award was earlier named after former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.
PM Modi had said, “I have been getting many requests from citizens across India to name the Khel Ratna Award after Major Dhyan Chand. I thank them for their views.”
“Respecting their sentiment, the Khel Ratna Award will hereby be called the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award! Jai Hind!,” he added.
This came a day after the Indian men’s hockey team won the Bronze medal after 41 years at the Olympic Games.
Dhyan Chand was a legendary hockey player known for his magical hockey skills. He was part of the Indian hockey team which struck gold in the Olympics of 1928, 1932, and 1936.
On August 29, India celebrates National Sports Day to commemorate the birth anniversary of hockey wizard Dhyan Chand.