BJP’s cannons turn towards Deoband; new MLA suggests name change

New Delhi: The newly elected Bharatiya Janta Party’s (BJP’s) Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) Brijesh Singh has proposed to rename ‘Deoband’ as ‘Devbrad.

Singh has won the Muslim-dominated seat in Saharanpur district of Uttar Pardesh (UP), and was the first to win the Muslim dominated seat for BJP after a period of nearly two decades.

He said the rename was not a Hindu-Muslim issue, adding, Deoband was just named after the Darul Uloom Deoband School, which did not seem good as it would destroy the history.

Changing its name will not affect Muslims entity, Singh said.

He said historic name of Deoband was Devbrad, which history belonged to Mahabharata as during his era the Pandava brothers spent their one year there.

Singh defeated Majid Ali, candidate of Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), with 29,415 votes from Deoband. Singh also claimed that a majority of Muslim women had voted for him as they were happy with the BJP’s stance on the triple talaq issue.

Deoband is a city and municipality present in Saharanpur district, is situated at a distance of about 150 km from New Delhi.

It is home to one of the earliest Islamic revivalist movements in India. The Deoband Movement was founded by Islamic scholar Shah Waliullah Dehlawi who thought that the Mughal Empire faced downfall as a punishment of drifting away from teachings of Islam.