During a special cabinet meeting led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde on Friday, the Maharashtra government officially issued a notification on the change of names of Aurangabad and Osmanabad districts to Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar and Dharashiv, respectively.
At a small ceremony later, Shinde along with Deputy Chief Ministers Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar unveiled plaques bearing the respective names of the districts.
75th Liberation Day
The state cabinet meeting was held at Chhatrapati Sambhaji Nagar on Saturday to commemorate the 75th Liberation Day of the Marathwada region.
“With the orders in place, the region, districts, tehsils and villages of Aurangabad and Osmanabad have been renamed as ‘Chhatrapati Sambhajinagar’ and ‘Dharashiv’ respectively,” stated the notifications issued by Santosh Gawde, deputy secretary, state revenue department.
The previous Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government under Uddhav Thackeray, in its last cabinet meeting in June 2022, had taken the decision to rename Aurangabad as Sambhaji Nagar and Osmanabad as Dharashiv. However, after coming to power, the MahaYuti government under Eknath Shinde reverted the previous decision of the Thackeray government and renamed the city of Aurangabad as Chhatrapati Sambhaji Nagar. However, the decision was challenged in the court and confusion prevailed as to what should the district and region be called. With today's notification all that confusion has been done away with.
Shiv Sena been raising demand to rename Aurangabad after Sambhaji
Shiv Sena had been raising the demand to rename Aurangabad after Maratha king Sambhaji since ages. It was expected that Thackeray would push for his party's most popular demand upon assuming power. However, he didn't do that until his last day in office. Muslim groups in the city and district had opposed the renaming and some of them had even approached courts over the issue. The issue also posed a threat to social harmony when some groups were seen flaunting posters of and shouting slogans in favour of Aurangazeb to oppose the renaming. The issue also rocked Maharashtra legislature during the recent monsoon session.