Thursday 16 July 2015

With Sri Bhaktavatsalam ji

|| योग: कर्मसु कौशलम् ||

Mananeeya Eknathji always used Where-When-What to talk and especially during the construction of Vivekananda Rock Memorial phase we find umpteen examples of the same. He had gathered info about Sri Bhaktavatsalam ji, the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. And therefore, how he kept the dialogue on is very interesting. In 'Eknathji', we find

Sri Bhaktavatsalam had declared that he would not allow the memorial to come up. The reason being the view expressed by Sri Humayun Kabir, Union Minister for Cultural Affairs that the natural beauty of the rock would be spoiled. Actually, the reason for denying the permission was political but he took shelter behind the comments of Sri Humayun Kabir.

Eknathji approached Sri Bhaktavatsalam. However, Sri Bhaktavatsalam was very firm on his stand. He reiterated that rock was "Vivekananda Rock" beyond any doubt but a memorial there was out of question, as it would be difficult to protect it. How to make him agree? Eknathji decided first just to sail with him and to keep the dialogue on. He kept the dialogue on.

Sri Bhaktavatsalam, in order to make it a point that he was not against the Memorial for Swami Vivekananda, suggested to the Vivekananda Rock Memorial Committee that the Memorial could be built on the shore. He gave not just the permission but also offered all support. However, Eknathji insisted that the Memorial should be on the Rock only, as it was there that Swami Vivekananda meditated and hit upon a plan for the regeneration of India. Sri Bhaktavatsalam was very unhappy at this refusal of the Vivekananda Rock Memorial Committee to build the Memorial on the shore. Eknathji had thus to face the test of derailment on the path of his goal. But, he stuck to building the Memorial on the Rock only.

Later when the 323 Members of Parliament approved the Memorial plan and Sri Panditji talked to Sri Bhaktavatsalam, he had to bow to the wishes of the Parliament i.e. the people themselves. Perhaps it was the only non-war and non-death issue, which the whole Parliament supported. Sri Bhaktavatsalam told the reporters on 5 Feb 1964 that the State Government would agree to the installation of statue of Swami Vivekananda on the Vivekananda Rock but it should be small and enclosed in a shrine. The newspapers carried this news on 06.02.1964.

Mananeeya Eknathji always kept the dialogue on with Sri Bhaktvatsalam.

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