toponymic query

Towse self at TOWSE.COM
Tue Nov 18 20:18:03 UTC 2003

Dan Goodman wrote:

> Marc Sacks wrote:
>> In connection with exonyms, does any of you know why "Mumbai" is
>> replacing Bombay in various places? Is this political correctness, or has the city
>> officially changed its name?

> The official change is old news; I suspect it was changed right after
> Indian independence. India's film industry is still called Bollywood,
> though.
> And Calcutta is now Kolkata.

And Madras was renamed Chennai as well. After the initial push, the name
changes seem to be on the back burner.

Further back, within a decade of independence, Madras state was renamed
Tamil Nadu. Tamil Nadu is the southern Indian state directly across the
Palk Strait and the Gulf of Mannar from Sri Lanka, which was itself
Ceylon until renamed in 1972.

An interesting explanation of the politics behind the name changes:


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