Yes, there is indeed a place in our own country which holds not just one or two, but three popular names.
A fascinating place in itself, often referred to as the religious capital of India and currently known as Varanasi is our topic of interest. With a record of over 3000 years of continuous inhabitance, it is indeed logical for the place to have a diverse nomenclature.
Of the many names given to it the three most popular ones are Kashi, Banaras and Varanasi.
Kashi was the oldest name given to the city.it was derived from the word “kasha” meaning light.
This reason suits best as the city holds the famous kasha Vishwanath Temple-A jyotirlinga. Jyotirlinga is a place where Lord Shiva is worshipped using Lingas of Light, hence giving its name.
Varanasi is the current name used in general. This name holds a geographic logic. The land of Varanasi is situated between two tributaries of the holy Ganga river, Varuna and Assi as they mark the northern and southern boundaries of it.
The term Banaras was used as an altered name for Varanasi, but is a very popular name and still in major use.
A common saying about the place by its inhabitants is “Kashi was the old name given..Varanasi is the modern city name, but Banaras is an emotion”.
To quote Mark Twain
“Benaras is older than history, older than tradition, older even than legend and looks twice as old as all of them put together.”