Kolkata: The West Bengal state Assembly on Monday passed a resolution to change the name of the state from West Bengal to 'Bangla' in Bengali and 'Bengal' in English. The opposition Congress, BJP and Left Front opposed the move.
The resolution was moved by state Parliamentary Affairs minister Partha Chatterjee under rule 169, which said that the name of the state would be 'Bangla' in Bengali , 'Bengal' in English and 'Bangal' in Hindi.
Speaking on the motion, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said, "The name Bangla has a historical and cultural background. I don't have any problem with the name 'Bango' either. But most of the people want the name 'Bangla'. In English it will be 'Bengal' so that there will be no confusion with the name of neighbouring Bangladesh."
"Whenever we go out of India or to some other state we are known as people from Bengal. In 2011 we had once proposed to change the name of the state, but it was held back by the Centre. There was no decision regarding it. So we decided to bring it once again to change the name of the state to 'Bangla'," Banerjee said.
Later speaking to reporters, Banerjee said "Those who are opposing the name change just for the sake of politics should be ashamed. It is a historic blunder and the history will not forgive them."
She said that the matter would now be sent to the central government and then it will be placed in Parliament. "I will request the central government to pursue the matter so that it can be placed in Parliament. We want it to be done as early as possible," she said.
Banerjee also criticised state BJP president and MLA Dilip Ghosh for his recent comments that he would not allow it to be passed. "I will see how he can stop it. I will speak to the Union home minister. Who is he (Dilip Ghosh) to stop it?" Banerjee said.