PM Modi to Honour Five Non Nehru Gandhi Assets

As part of the Modi Government’s plan to step away from leaders from the Nehru-Gandhi lineage and celebrate new icons, the National Implementation Committee under Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh has announced plans to commemorate five eminent figures, including BJD founder and two-time Odisha CM Biju Patnaik and shehnai maestro Ustad Bismillah Khan. Though the move has been in the works, the decision comes days after actor Rishi Kapoor’s tweets on the dominance of the Gandhi family in the names of various “national assets”. It enhances the political process to de-emphasise Congress’s first family by celebrating personalities from culture, politics and history who did not find much favour earlier. The Modi government has ensured inclusion of figures who resonate with its “rashtrawadi (nationalistic)” constituencies while also ensuring inclusion of minority community figures so that the list of national icons does not appear sectarian. Last year, Tantia Tope, a leading figure of the 1857 war against the British and 16th century Rajput ruler of Mewar Maharana Pratap, signalled this trend.

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