Should there be a transparent policy for naming the government schemes?
Information provided by the Ministry of Planning in response to an application filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act has revealed that 27 out of 58 institutions and schemes being run by the Centre are named after former Prime Ministers belonging to a single family - Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi. The information reveals that the schemes /institutions were launched in the name of the persons as under:
- Rajiv Gandhi –16
- Indira Gandhi – 8
- Jawaharlal Nehru –3, and
- Mahatma Gandhi – 4 Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti, Gandhi Shilp Bazar, Mahatma Gandhi Bunkar Bima Yojana and UPA's flagship scheme Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA).
Other eminent personalities whose names have been used for schemes and institutions include:
- B R Ambedkar – 4,
- Maulana Abul Kalam – 3, and
- Lal Bahadur Shastri – 2.
One scheme / institution in the name of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Rabindranath Tagore, Zakir Hussain, Babu Jagjivan Ram, Kasturba Gandhi, Rani Lakshmibai, Raja Rammohan Roy and Satyajit Ray.
The information shows that nearly half of the institutions and schemes run by the Centre are named after the Nehru-Gandhi family. Critics have pointed to the need for choosing the names of schemes / institutions / roads from a wider diaspora.