Calling his demand to rename Bakhtiyarpur “nonsense”, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar on Monday slammed BJP MLA Hari Bhushan Thakur Bachol. Bakhtiyarpur is a city located about 50 km from the state capital Patna. “It is sheer nonsense. Bakhtiyarpur is my birthplace, who will change its name? People keep talking such nonsense about Bakhtiyarpur. That was the reason that Nalanda University in late 12 century went from our control,” said Kumar, after winding up his public interaction programme ‘Janata Ke Darbaar Mein Mukhyamantri’.
He made the remark in reply to a question from journalists who sought his views on the BJP MLA’s demand to rename Bakhtiyarpur as ‘Nitish Nagar’. Bachol recently told the media in Patna that Bakhtiyarpur should be renamed as ‘Nitish Nagar’. “Since Bakhtiyarpur is the birthplace of the CM, it must be renamed as ‘Nitish Nagar’. Bakhtiyarpur is named after Bakhtiyar Khilji – the military general of Qutb-ud-Din-Aibak – who destroyed the famed Nalanda University. Khilji was a robber, therefore, name of the city must be changed,” said the BJP MLA.
Nitish also said, “There is no question of changing the name, it’s all nonsense. A man born in the same Bakhtiyarpur is here, who is building Nalanda University,” said the CM.
Earlier, union minister Giriraj Singh had also demanded Bakhtiyarpur be renamed. He demanded that Bakhtiyarpur and other towns and cities in Bihar named after Muslim invaders be rechristened, as is being done in the neighbouring Uttar Pradesh. Giriraj is a Lok Sabha member from Bihar’s Nawada constituency, representing the BJP.