Bhagyanagar a political motive: Deccan Heritage Trust opposes renaming of Hyderabad

Hyderabad: Deccan Heritage Trust has opposed the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) attempting to rename Hyderabad as Bhagyanagar.

At an event ‘Forever Hyderabad’ held on Tuesday, historian, Captain Pandu Ranga Reddy and former resident editor Times of India, King Shuk Nag, opposed this move by the RSS. Various personalities attempted to break all myths about the city’s history during the event.

Captain Pandu Ranga Reddy, questioned the existence of Bhagmati, after whom a few claim that the city has been named. “Bhagmati is a fictional character and there was no love affair. People are of the opinion that Purana pul was built by Ibrahim Quli Qutb Shah for his son to go meet his lover Bhagmati. If you see the dates you will know that Quli Qutub Shah was only about 6-8 years old at that time, so there is no possibility of a love story evolving. The dates on the Puranapul bridge also verify the same,” he stated.

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He further added that if Ibrahim was concerned for his son, he would have gotten them married, instead of building them a bridge to meet each other secretly at night. Neither Persian nor Mughal, Arabic or Qutb shahi documents have mentioned or recorded the name Bhagyanagar, in reference to Hyderabad.

The Puranapul (old bridge) was built in the year 1578 by Ibrahim Qutb Shah (1550-80), the third monarch of the Qutb Shahi or Golconda dynasty (1518-1687). It was built as a link between the Golconda Fort, which was a walled city until 1591, the year Hyderabad was founded by Mohd Quli Qutb Shah, Ibrahim’s son.

According to various legends, Ibrahim had constructed this bridge for Mohd Quli Qutb Shah to go and meet his supposed lover or courtesan, Bhagmati. The story goes that after Ibrahim’s death, his son founded Hyderabad and first named it after Bhagmati calling it Bhagnagar. However, many historians have repeatedly, denied the existence of Bhagmati citing a lack of evidence.

Responding to question by reporters, Captain also cleared any air about the existence of a mandir near Charminar before 1957-58.

“I have seen it with my own eyes that there stood no temple near Charminar until 1957-58. A beggar woman sat near a stone, where a massive temple stands today. It was only in 1963 that a small temple first appeared. The image archives of The Hindu, also reflect that there stood no mandir near the Charminar until 1963,” he said.

The Archeological Survey of India has called it an illegal construction even then no action could be taken to remove the structure. “A case has been filed against the notice of the ASI which is yet to be heard. We do not object to any party forming a government in Telangana but we humbly request you not to divide the community,” he added.

King Shuk Nag said that the proposal to change the name of the city comes despite no such demands from the people to do so, which reflects the personal motives of political parties.

“They have a very obvious political motive behind it. Ahmedabad’s name was not changed despite the proposal, because the BJP is already in power and does not feel the need to do so. When they could not find a reason to justify renaming the city, they have developed a false historical narrative to do so. There is no contemporary reason to rename the city, it does not benefit the common man but only helps the political motive of the parties,” King Shuk Nag explained.

“Pay heed to the problems of the common man. There are a lot of problems that the state struggles with including the price of petrol, hunger, health during COVID-19, unemployment. but instead, you choose to keep them aside and want to change the name of the city, which brings us no benefit,” he added.

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