Welcoming the New Delhi Municipal Council's decision to rename the Aurangazeb road in the national capital as Dr APJ Abdul Kalam road, Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray today said the Aurangabad city in central Maharashtra too would be renamed as 'Sambhaji Nagar'.
Aurangabad, an industrial centre now, was once a prominent Mughal city in the Deccan, and derives its name from the Emperor Aurangzeb.
Speaking to reporters here, the Sena chief said, "We welcome Delhi corporation's decision. On the same lines, we would rename Aurangabad city as Sambhaji Nagar." Further, the Aurangabad airport should be renamed as Raje Sambhaji Maharaj Airport, he said.
A resolution to rename Aurangabad was passed sometime ago, but for various reasons it wasn't put into effect, he said. "Now that we are in power at the Centre and the state, we will once again get resolutions passed and change the names," he said.
Asked about the restrictions imposed by the government or the courts with regard to celebration of festivals such as Ganpati festival or Dahi Handi, Thackeray said with such curtailment of freedom, the country's independence would become irrelevant.
Shiv Sena, when it was in power (alongwith BJP) during 1995-99, had renamed Bombay, the financial capital of the country, as Mumbai.
For long the party has been calling Aurangabad as Sambhaji Nagar. Sambhaji, the elder son of King Shivaji, was executed upon Aurangzeb's order after the Mughals captured him in 1689.