Cricket stadium renamed after Indian PM Modi

2021-02-24 16:40:19 GMT2021-02-25 00:40:19(Beijing Time) Sina English


A Cricket fan takes a selfie picture in front of the newly named Narendra Modi Stadium, the world’s biggest cricket stadium in Motera, Ahmedabad on Wednesday.

India renamed the world’s largest cricket stadium after Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday, a move that drew immediate praise and criticism.

The name, change to the Narendra Modi Stadium, was unveiled at the 132,000-seat venue formerly known as Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad, in the western state of Gujarat, where India are playing England in the third match of a four-game test series.

A gifted orator and consummate populist, Modi is by far the most popular and recognizable politician in India, and won a second term in power with an increased majority for the nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party in 2019.

But Modi has also been accused of centralizing power in the world’s biggest democracy.

“World’s largest stadium dedicated to the world’s largest personality!” Priti Gandhi, a BJP spokesperson, said in a tweet. Others said the decision reflected a cult of personality surrounding Modi.

“The people of Gujarat will not bear this insult to Sardar Patel,” said Hardik Patel, president of the opposition Congress party in the state.

Patel was India’s first interior minister, revered for his tough approach on national issues.