As soon as PM Modi announced that India’s highest sports honour, the ‘Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award’ will be renamed as Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award, a demand from Karnataka has begun pouring in to rename the famous Rajiv Gandhi National Park. The Park was previously known as Nagarhole National Reserve Forest.
Kodagu resident Vinay Kayapanda recently launched an online petition through Change.org with an aim to get signatures from around 7,500 people. It had already reached over 6,400 signatories at 22:45 on Sunday with more still counting. Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai, as well as PM Narendra Modi, were addressed in the petition which clearly indicates that the people of Karnataka considered PM Modi as a ray of hope when it comes to fulfilling their demands and needs.
Having reached over 6400 signatures on Sunday, the petitioners showed gratitude towards the signatories and said that Indian citizens need to be recognized and not just a few politicians.
The petitioners stated, “India is a democratic country which is by the people, for the people and from the people, all deserving citizens should be recognised, not just few dynastic people,”
The petition weighs on the demand to rename the park after Kodandera Madappa Cariappa. Cariappa was the first Indian Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army.
As per the petition, “The name Nagarahole National Reserve Forest was changed to Rajiv Gandhi National Park in order to please a particular family and its party. Either its previous name is restored or the National Park should be named after the first general of India as Kodagu General Cariappa National Park. It will be a great tribute to the great general of Kodagu.”
The name Nagarahole was derived from two Kannada words, ‘Nagara’ meaning snake and ‘hole’ meaning river. Few other reserve forests were added to its area in 1974. Afterwards, Nagarahole turned into a National Park. In 1988, its area was extended by 643.39 square kilometres and further in 1999, it was declared a Tiger Reserve. The National Park currently stretches across 853 square kilometres.
A few days back, PM Modi, in a hallmark decision, had drawn the nation’s attention by announcing that the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award will now be known as the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award.
Major Dhyan Chand is one of the greatest sports personalities who put India on the map of global sports and represented India at the Olympics in 1928, 1932, and 1936. He also secured three consecutive Olympic gold medals for the country in hockey, on the basis of which India dominated the sport until the early 70s.
PM Modi quoted in his tweet, “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!”
After PM Modi’s historic decision to rename the Khel Ratna award, people from Karnataka have realised that should the people demand it, PM Modi is willing to undo the mistakes of past governments and rectify their mistakes of pandering to a particular family. Thus, they have high hopes from their Prime Minister to rectify the mistakes done by previous governments.