The New Delhi Municipal Council has renamed Race Course Road to Lok Kalyan Marg, ANI reported on Wednesday. Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said the decision to make the change was a unanimous one. It comes a day after NDMC member and Bharatiya Janata Party leader Meenakshi Lekhi said the former name did not “match with Indian culture”, according to NDTV.
Lekhi said renaming the road – on which the Prime Minister’s official residence is located – to “Ekatma Marg” was in line with the philosophy of “integral humanism” espoused by philosopher Deen Dayal Upadhyaya, whom the BJP considers an icon. Some members of the ruling Aam Aadmi Party government in New Delhi had opposed Lekhi's suggestion, according to The Times of India. AAP MLA Surinder Singh said he had been approached by several veterans from security forces to choose a name that honours soldiers killed in various operations and wars.
The road was originally named Race Course Road after the Delhi Race Club, which was established in 1940. In August, Delhi's Aurangzeb Road was renamed to Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Road after the former president, who died on July 27, 2015.