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Vivekananda memorial in city remains locked

Sreekantswamy B, Mysore, Nov 20, 2012, DHNS: 22:26 IST

Mutt where the monk stayed on his visit was renovated at `25 lakh

As the nation is celebrating 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda, a memorial of the great monk in the city remains locked.

Niranjana Mutt on Krishnavilas Road abutting Maharani’s NTMS School, was the place where the revered monk stayed during his visit to the city of palaces 120 years ago in 1892. It was exactly in the month of November, Swami Vivekananda had arrived on an invitation from the then Maharaja of Mysore Hattane Chamarajendra Wadiyar. He had stayed at the mutt for a period of 15 days between November 9 and 24, according to the references made in ‘Vedanta Kesari’ published by Sri Ramakrishna Ashrama.

The mutt with two halls and a corridor was renovated by the Mysore City Corporation (MCC) spending an estimated Rs 25 lakh. After much dilly-dallying it was opened by the then chief minister D V Sadananda Gowda in April last. Since then, the memorial remains inaccessible defeating the very purpose of spreading the message of the monk. The memorial became a reality when the then Mysore MP C H Vijayashankar (now MLC) took interest in giving a new lease of life for the heritage site.

When a top officer from the tourism department preferred to take a look of the memorial, the closed doors greeted her. Sources told Deccan Herald, they had to inform the city corporation about the officer’s visit and get the keys to open the memorial. The department of tourism also has no such plans to promote the memorial as a tourist spot. However, there is a proposal to hand over the memorial to Sri Ramakrishna Ashrama for maintenance, but has remained only on papers.

Strange is a flex on the Swami Vivekananda’s visit to Mysore and related informations is put up at the entrance of Dasara exhibition grounds. However, the memorial which still stands testimony to the monk’s visit stands idle.

With the city known as a popular tourist hub, the memorial will be yet another must visit site on tourists itinerary. More than that Mysore is the only city after Belgaum, to take pride in the visit of Swami Vivekananda before he left for the World Religious meet in Chicago that catapulted him to fame.

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