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Context: The iconic Rajpath, stretching from Rashtrapati Bhavan to India Gate, was renamed Kartavya Path following a formal decision taken at a special meeting of the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC).
- The entire stretch and the area from the Netaji statue under the Grand Canopy to the Rashtrapati Bhavan will be known as Kartavya Path.
- As per the NDMC resolution, Kartavya Path includes the erstwhile “Rajpath and Central Vista lawns”.
- The Rashtrapati Bhavan was built by the British as the Vice-regal Palace where the Viceroy lived.
- Called Kingsway during British rule, the three-km stretch was built as a ceremonial boulevard by Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker, the architects of New Delhi, more than a hundred years ago.
- The capital of the Raj moved to New Delhi from Calcutta in 1911, and construction continued for several years thereafter.
- Lutyens conceptualised the modern imperial city centred around a “ceremonial axis”, which was named Kingsway in honour of the then Emperor of India, George V, who visited Delhi during the Durbar of 1911, where he formally proclaimed the decision to move the capital.
- The nomenclature followed that of the Kingsway in London, an arterial road built in 1905, which was named in honour of King Edward VII, the father of George V.
- Following Independence, the road was given its Hindi name, Rajpath, on which the Republic Day parades took place over the decades that followed.
- During his address from the Red Fort on August 15, Modi had stressed on the abolition of symbols of colonialism. The new name and look of Rajpath, as well as the installation of the 28-foot statue of Netaji under the Grand Canopy under which a statue of George V once stood, are meant to represent that spirit of the proud new India.
- The construction of the Central Vista Redevelopment Project began in February 2021, with the new Parliament building and redevelopment of the Central Vista Avenue in the first phase. The aim is to build an iconic avenue that truly befits the New India, the government has said about the Rs 608 crore Central Vista Avenue project.
- It symbolises a shift from erstwhile Rajpath being an icon of power to Kartavya Path being an example of public ownership and empowerment.
- The inauguration of the new avenue and the statue of Netaji are “steps…in line with the Prime Minister’s second ‘Panch Pran’ for New India in Amrit Kaal: ‘remove any trace of colonial mindset’,” the statement said.
- The statue of Bose will be installed in the same place where a hologram statue was unveiled by the PM on Parakram Diwas (January 23) this year. Crafted by Arun Yogiraj, the statue has been carved from a monolithic granite stone and weighs 65 tonnes.