Y Satya Kumar, BJP national secretary, tweeted that the area is named after Pakistan founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah and should be renamed after Dr APJ Abdul Kalam or Telugu poet Gurram Jashuva

On Thursday, December 30, BJP National Secretary Y Satya Kumar shared a tweet calling for the renaming of Jinnah Tower Centre in Guntur, Andhra Pradesh. Jinnah Tower Centre is the most prominent landmark in Guntur and is located at Mahatma Gandhi Road.

The tweet’s content said, “The tower is named after Jinnah and area as Jinnah Centre. The irony, it’s not in Pakistan but the Guntur City of AP. A centre that still carries the name of the traitor of India. Why shouldn’t it be named after Dr Kalam or son of the soil, a great Dalit poet, Gurram Jashuva? Just an idea!”

Despite many conflicts between India and Pakistan, the tower’s name hasn’t been changed till now. In 2017, the Pakistan government also recognised Jinnah Tower and made an official tweet.

“#Jinnah Tower is a landmark monument in the city of #Guntur in Andhra Pradesh. It is named after the father of #Pakistan, Muhammad Ali Jinnah and is located on Mahatma Gandhi Road of the city as a symbol of peace and harmony. #QuaidEAzam #JinnahKaPakistan” it tweeted.

However, the tweet by BJP National Secretary, Y Satya Kumar on December 30 has resulted in unrest and concern.

It was further shared by Telangana BJP MLA Raja Singh and Andhra BJP president Somu Verraju.

The tweet by Satya Kumar and the subsequent re-sharing of it by other BJP leaders has sparked a protest by Andhra’s ruling party, Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP). YSRCP leaders allege that this was intended to create communal discord in the city.

YSRCP party secretary and MLC Lella Appireddy’s statement that never in the history of the city had such a demand been made and added that the party would lodge a strong protest over the issue, was reported by The Hindu.

He pointed out that veteran BJP leader L K Advani, during his visit to Pakistan in 2005, had praised Jinnah as the most secular freedom fighter and an ambassador for Hindus and Muslims.