An Indian state has decided to rename dragon fruit because the original name is “associated with China”.
Gujarat Chief Minister, Vijay Rupani said the fruit would now be called kamalam, Sanskrit for the lotus flower.
Lotus is sacred to Hindus and is India’s national flower.
It is also the election symbol of the Bharatiya Janata Party, to which Mr Rupani and PM Narendra Modi belong, and the name of the BJP office in Gujarat.
India has begun cultivating dragon fruit only in recent years and it’s now grown in parts of Gujarat too.
It belongs to a family of cactus – and is believed to have earned its fearsome name because its pointy outer layer resembles the scales of a dragon.
Though it’s a tropical fruit native to Central America and is largely imported from South America, many in India associate it with China because of its name.
Rivals India and China are often described as the elephant and the dragon respectively, and the relations between the neighbours have been especially frosty since their armies clashed on the icy Himalayan borders in the summer.
The state’s decision to rename the fruit was announced on Tuesday by Mr Rupani.
“The name dragon fruit is not proper, and due to its name, one thinks of China. So we have given it the name ‘kamalam’,” he told the local press.
Mr Rupani did not elaborate but that was all the inspiration the internet needed.
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