Bombay vs Mumbai


Bombay vs Mumbai

A British newspaper adopted the city's colonial name and it triggered maximum outrage

By ELLE team  February 11th, 2016

Kolkata/Calcutta-born Amol Rajan, editor of British daily The Independent, announced on Wednesday that the paper will henceforth refer to Mumbai by its colonial name ‘Bombay’. “I’d rather side with the tradition of India that’s been open to the world, rather than the one that’s been closed, which is in ascendance right now,” he told The BBC, adding, “If you call it what Hindu nationalists want you to call it, you essentially do their work for them.” If you haven’t kept up with the Twitter rage and thinkpiece 1, 2 and coming soon, here are the highlights:  

After an initial cheer of approval, Bombayites and Mumbaiites realised this feels very British Raj and spoke out against Rajan’s decision. Perhaps because Twitter runs on a default argument-and-counterargument timeline, but also because: (a) He got some facts wrong. While the name Bombay was officially decolonized in 1995, ‘Mumbai’ has long been used by the city’s Maharashtrian population (b) Bombay’s renaming was democratic, if not popular (c) we’d rather not be told by an English daily which name to run with. Even if we agree with you.

Skip the drama and lead you straight to the jokes? Gladly.