Shabda Cayaniká – “Science of Words”

Shabda Cayaniká Part 6, 7, 9 were dictated in the year 1986

Shabda Cayaniká Part 10, 11, 12,13, 14 were dictated in the year 1987

Shabda Cayaniká Part 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 were dictated in the year 1988

Shabda Cayaniká Part 21 and 22 were dictated in the year 1989

Shabda Cayaniká Part 26 was dictated in the year 1990

As a result of the Britishers’ distorted pronunciation the names of many famous cities in this country have become distorted. I have already talked about the distortion of the name Kalikátá (Calcutta) in this regard.

A similar thing has happened with the city Bombay. Many fishing families were living in the suburbs of the modern city of Bombay. These fishing families were the old inhabitants of the city before it became Bombay. Their traditional deity was the goddess Mumbávatii. Vatii becomes bai in Maháráśt́rii Prákrta, so accordingly Mumbávatii became Mumbábai and, with the passage of time, Mumbái. The word mumbái has been common in both Marathi and Gujarati since that time and remains so. The British turned this Mumbái into Bombay and this “Bombay” became Bombái in Hindi and Bengali. Kothákár jal kotháy ese dánŕála [Where does the water come from; where does it end up?].(10) Recently the government of Maharashtra has changed the name Bombái to Mumbái. This is a praiseworthy action.

Calcutta should promptly be changed to Kalikátá in English.

Why should the same proper noun be called differently by different people! This destroys the sense of value of a proper noun. If you ask someone named Sardar Hazara Singh his name will he say that his name is “Leader Thousand Lions”? Should we call Krishnanagar “Black City” in English? Someone who gets a kick out of calling Krishnanagar “Black City” should follow suit and call Calcutta “Lime and Rope”. Only then will their penchant for imitation be complete.