Hillcroft, a part of southwest Houston, Texas has been officially renamed as Mahatma Gandhi district recently. This ethnic conclave is home to a large number of South Asians predominantly, Indian and Pakistani population having many restaurants and shops.
The Greater Houston area was popularly known as ‘Little India”, as more than 75,000 people of Indian descent live here. On 16 Jan 2010, city mayor Annise Parker announced the change of name as Mahatma Gandhi district to honour the pioneer of nonviolent resistance movements.
According to the municipal law, 75 per cent of commercial property owners on a street will have to sign a petition for the City Council to consider the change of the name of an area.
This change in name brings a feeling of recognition for the Indian-Americans in Houston. The democratic law and the respect given to peoples’ cultures and beliefs in US should be appreciated. Not only Mahatma Gandhi district, there are a few other areas of Houston that have additional signs on top of the street signs, such as in Midtown and Chinatown.