Indian government has decided to rename three islands in Andaman and Nicobar - Havelock Island to Swaraj Dweep, Neil Island to Shaheed Dweep and Ross Island to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Island, reports the Hindustan Times.
While the proposal has been cleared by the Ministry of Home Affairs, the announcement will be made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his visit to Port Blair this month, to mark the 75th anniversary of Bose’s historic visit to the islands.
“The government has decided to announce the change of name for the three islands - Havelock Island, Neil Island and Ross Island - as a tribute to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose,” a home ministry official told the daily.
“It will be announced along with other plans for the islands during PM’s visit at the end of this month,” it said.
On 30 December 1943, Bose had hoisted the national flag at the Gymkhana Ground (now Netaji Stadium) in Port Blair and announced that the islands were the first Indian territory to be freed from British rule. The islands at the time were captured by the Japanese during World War II.
Bose had then named Andaman Island as Shaheed and Nicobar Island as Swaraj and had appointed INA general AD Loganathan as its governor, the daily reported.
The Modi government’s decision comes over a month after West Bengal BJP vice-president Chandra Kumar Bose, who is related to the freedom fighter, had written to the PM urging to him to rename the Andaman and Nicobar Islands as the ‘Shaheed and Swaraj Islands’.