Tough one for the BBC. On the upside, those Mumbai folks have introduced a Sharia linked Index in their primary financial institution! But – gasp – they insist on calling it the BOMBAY Stock Exchange. Maybe the BBC should remind them that such references to their Imperial past are just..offensive to right thinking liberals?

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  1. George R says:

    From BBC documentary, ‘Bombay railway’, song: ‘Chali, chali’ (video 3:50)

    The full BBC documentary, ‘Bombay railway’ (2 hours duration) is repeated in 2 parts this week on UK TV, BBC 2:

    Part 1: 30 Dec. 8:55 am;

    Part 2: 31 Dec. (inc. song) 9:05 am.


  2. deegee says:

    The Bombay vs. Mumbai dispute is an Indian dispute more than it is BBC political correctness. The push to rename Bombay was part of a larger movement to strengthen Marathi identity in the Maharashtra region. Some of its residents still call it Bombay as well as Indians from other regions. In 1960 Bombay State was partitioned into Gujart state and Maharashtra State with Bombay as its capital on linguistic lines after violent clashes. Gujarati speakers, probably still call the city Bombay for ethnic identity reasons as do Urdu speaking Muslims.

    My personal opinion is that when the government of the country changes the official English name of a city there is generally no reason why the English speaking media shouldn’t follow suit.

    BTW a good introduction to the controversy can be found in Wages of violence: naming and identity in postcolonial Bombay By Thomas Blom Hansen


  3. Little Black Sambo says:

    A bit silly to change it so much that people don’t recognize it, though: e.g. Chennai, and lots of Chinese places.