Tuesday 12 September 2023

Abhimanyu Samantasinghar Marg - Bhubaneswar Road Renamed

Yesterday, eminent writer and artist, Shri J.P.Das, shared a Facebook post with an image regarding renaming of a road in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India.

A particular road that was previously named as "Abhimanyu Samantasinghar Marg" is now known as "Saint Mother Teresa Marg."

How did this happen? 

When did this happen? 

Information is usually not known unless shared.

That is how people become aware.

I first came to know about the incident in 2018 from Shri Prakash Nayak, one of the activists who had raised his voice against the issue.

But, when did the road-name-change happen? In year 2016!

This news-report in the Times of India has more info.

A group tried to take this up by reasoning and arguing in favour of our celebrated poet on many levels.
However, some other "intelligentsia" did their bit to support the move of the Government.

When I first learned of this, I wondered at the ease of which such things happen.
Those in power will do all that they can to do all what they want to.

Some of the responses in the said FB post showed a multitude of emotions- ignorance, apathy, mockery, anger, helplessness, support, surprise etc.

Sharing some of the replies here followed by the names-

The path or destination does not change but the name does. Surprise ! - Prabasini Hota

A new Abhimanyu road with his statue is now in Unit -4, in Madhusudan Nagar area. - Amiya Pandav

I hope it is as important a road as the earlier one. But why the change ? - J.P. Das

Is not the change a disrespect to the memory of the celebrated Odia poet? - Ganesh Das

Because now our society wants more santha/baba than the genius poets.. - Sujit Nath

Shame, shame, shame. Are the people of the area sleeping? - Snigdharani Mishra

There is no reason for the people of Odisha to oppose if any road is named after Mother Teresa because she adopted many orphan children in Odisha at that time when there was no way to live, but the place of Abhimanyu Samanta Sinhar is not acceptable. This kind of advice to the government. Who gave it? Those Amala have remembered who have never heard Abhimanyu's name. This is our misfortune. - Lalatendu Das Mohapatra

Ex-Chairman of Petition Committee, Rajya Sabha Mr Janeswar Mishra during his visit to Odisha in a press conference at Bhubaneswar described the people of as a “ timid lot” and unable to raise their voice. Nobody reacted to to his comments.- Narayan Prasad Das

The officers who are responsible for naming the road may not have known or wished to know that the road has already been named after an Odia. This shows their irresponsibility and incompetence. - Santosh Misra

A very shameful incident - Radhashyam Mohanty

Conspiracy indeed, I strongly oppose and condemn such changes. - K. Biplab

What would happen if you do it - Sujit Nath 

Once the road is named after a famous Odia poet, it is always inappropriate to change it after Mother Teresa. The government could have named any other road after Teresa instead. - Nihar Satpathy

Bhubaneswar is expanding. They could have named another important road in the name of Mother Teresa without changing the original one. - Pradip Ch Das

Todays' social reality... except a few handful of people, no one will protest. Odia Asmita is in eternal sleep. Now the old people will be crying from above. - Manoranjan Mishra

This government is running like this because of a handful of selfish chasers who have destroyed the self respect of Odisha. This will happen if the ruler becomes non-Odia. - Ramachandra Nath

A true Odia would not have done this. - Bangali Nanda

Now we are hearing that only an Odia took the lead role of these conspiracies. The government sent him to Delhi for successfully completing his work.  - Prakash Nayak

Poet Abhimanyu Samantsinghar is unique all over India, who designed the Nava Brundaban in Balia of Jajpur district. That's why he went to Brundaban many times. But when he was 46 years old, again went to Brundavan, he went to the heaven. Many of his plans could not be fulfilled. But in Baruhana of Jajpur District. He gave land for the Dola Melan and gathered everyone in that area. But unfortunately, while here in Bhubaneswar, the government seized five acres of land of Baruhan Melan. - Prakash Nayak

Change for change shake? Abhimanyu Samantasinghar is closer to Odias than the so called "mother". - Lingaraj Mishra

The Unit-9 road from regional chhaka to Ramadevi college has been newly named after Abhimanyu Samanta Singhar. - Manoj Nayak

Is there a shortage of roads in Bhubaneswar that the name of the road named after a famous poet and famous poet had to be renamed? This only indicates the low inferiority and incompetence of the so called politicians. - Niranjan Sahoo

The name which was originated is to revive our poet writer Smriti (memory) in the mind forever and give direction to the next generation..... Back to that original name again. For this there should be a protest of intellectuals. - Jogesh Das

With the change of time, the name is also changing, there is nothing new in this, likewise the name of many places in India. Why isn't anyone taking up the questions. Of course this is not fair.- Kailash Chandra Sahoo

This is not good to change a name to another one. Abhimanyu Marg should be the name of that road. If the Govt interested, then they can name another road in the name of St. Teresa. - Smaran Nayak

To my information, a protest was raised against renaming an already-named road. But, when the govt wishes to do something, who can stop them? More so when an element of appeasement is intrinsic to the motive, the juggernaut rolls on. - Sunil Biswal

This is my reply-

Truly sad state of affairs. This disrespectful act had happened 7 years ago.

It was in 2016.
Now it is 2023.
Why hasn’t the road’s name been reverted to original name?
Many were unaware then & many still are unaware now.
Some got to learn thanks to your post 🙏🏽
Thanks to the efforts of a few aware & concerned & conscious #VocalForLocal Odias, who have been standing up for such causes & taking action 🙏🏽
May Mahaprabhu bless for more strength 🙌
May all understand & realize the need to know & support whatever is right & be ready to fight for the rights & to honour and uphold our state’s prestige & pride- icons like Abhimanyu Babu 🙏🏽
Any unnamed road could have been named after Mother Teresa. She may have some in her name already unlike our celebrated poet.
This is one of the incidents like Rasagola that highlights how much ownership we take up & how connected we are with our roots.
Jaya Shree Jagannatha 🙏🏽

What is your reaction when a road originally named after a poet is renamed to that of another personality?
Do you think there will be a revert to the original name?
Please share your views below.


  1. People will still call that road with the old name. For example, in Chennai, they changed the name of Mount Road to Anna Salai in 1970. This is 2023 and people still refer to that road as Mount Road.

    1. Thank you so much for sharing this Chennai road example :)
      That was even before Google!
      There is a saying - "Old habits die hard."
      Now, Google saves the names of the roads, and future updates have to be duly noted and informed. Updating online is easy in this digital world.
      The important point is- will the public understand and follow suit?
      What is right is right. May we have the strength to support and follow what is right.


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