Sunil Gavaskar, one of India’s cricketing legends, has added his perspective to the ongoing debate regarding the renaming of India to Bharat. The topic has ignited discussions across the nation, and even sporting personalities are expressing their views. Following Virender Sehwag’s public stance on the matter, Sunil Gavaskar has offered his insights, emphasizing that any decision must be made at the official level.
In a conversation with India Today, Gavaskar acknowledged that the original name is indeed ‘Bharat.’ However, if a change is to be implemented, it should be executed comprehensively.
“The original name is Bharat. It has a certain elegance to it. But for the cricket team to be officially named the ‘Bharat cricket team,’ this change should occur at the governmental and BCCI levels. Historical changes have transpired before; for example, Burma is now known as Myanmar. Therefore, reverting to the original name is feasible, and I don’t anticipate significant issues. However, the transition should be comprehensive,” he remarked.
Earlier, Virender Sehwag wrote to BCCI Secretary Jay Shah, proposing that players wear jerseys emblazoned with ‘Bharat’ during the World Cup.
“I firmly believe that a name should invoke a sense of pride. We are Bhartiyas (Indians), and ‘India’ is a name bestowed upon us by the British. It is long overdue that we officially reclaim our original name, ‘Bharat.’
“I urge BCCI Secretary Jay Shah to ensure that, in this World Cup, our players proudly sport ‘Bharat’ on their chests,” Sehwag shared on social media.
Sehwag, a dynamic opener during his cricketing career, cited instances of other nations adopting different names when participating in World Cups. He mentioned the Netherlands, which played as ‘Holland’ in the 1996 World Cup but retained ‘The Netherlands’ in subsequent tournaments.
“In the 1996 World Cup, the Netherlands competed as ‘Holland.’ When we faced them in 2003, they had transitioned to ‘The Netherlands’ and have remained so. Burma has reverted to its original name, Myanmar, shedding the name imposed by the British. Numerous other countries have also reclaimed their original identities,” Sehwag further explained in his tweets.