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They will be Belagavi, Mangalooru, Mysuru from November next

Special Correspondent

BANGALORE: Changes in the names of some more cities in Karnataka are in the offing. After deciding to rename the State capital Bangalore as Bengalooru, the Government has decided to change the names of Mysore, Mangalore, Gulbarga, Hubli and Belgaum. Those cities will shed their anglicised names and assume Kannada names.

Announcing this at Gulbarga on Sunday, Chief Minister N. Dharam Singh said that Mysore will become Mysuru, Mangalore-Mangalooru, Hubli- Hubballi, Gulbarga-Kalburgi, and Belgaum-Belagavi.

As in the case of Bangalore, the new names will come into vogue from November 1, 2006, which marks the 50th year of the reorganisation of the State.

The Chief Minister said that the State Cabinet will consider the changes and forward them to the Centre for approval.

Mr. Singh defended the decision to change the name of Bangalore and noted that the proposal came at a meeting with litterateurs and others held in connection with the celebration of "Suvarna Karnataka."

The decision with regard to Bangalore has met with approval from intellectuals and others, he said.

The name changing exercise has, however, met with opposition from some of the intellectuals (other than those connected with Kannada literature) and professionals who regard it as encouragement of parochialism. Karnataka should not have followed in the footsteps of States where regionalism holds the key to political fortunes, is the view.

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