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New Names

We just had a visit from Ansh, the son of Yash's 'cousin brother' Krishna.  We attended his wedding along with our children in a town called Jhansi in our state of Uttar Pradesh just last year.  Ansh's wife has recently given birth to their first child, a son.

In India, particularly in the north, the name of a new baby is sometimes given by the paternal grandmother of the infant and sometimes by the paternal aunt.  I'm not sure who has chosen this baby's name, but he as a most unusual name.  It is Nehansh.  Pronounced 'nay-hansh'.  The name is actually a combination of the mother's name (Neha) and the father's name (Ansh).  This makes it a unique name.

A few years ago, when I was teaching in a nursery school, I had a student called Medhanjai.  I had never heard of that name before and wondered from where his parents had sourced it.  When I met his parents, the mystery was solved.  The mother's name was Sumedha.  The father's name was Jai Prakash.  Medhanjai was a combination 'medha' and 'jai', cemented with an 'n'.  Another unique name.

There is a film star named Amisha Patel in India.  She has starred in some of the most successful films ever made in Bollywood. Her name too is a combination of the parents names.  Her father is 'Amit' and her mother is 'Asha'.  Hence 'Amisha'.  Even her brother's name is a combination of the parents' names.  His name is Ashmit Patel.  This is a totally different sounding combination of the parents' names.

This is not a widespread trend, but it could catch on.  One has to be careful, though.  I know a boy called Monu and his parents' names are Ranjeet and Vanita. Once he remarked to me that if his name was a combination of his parents' names, he would have been called Ravan.  For those who don't know, Ravan is a very negative and evil character in the mythology of north India!

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