Vivekananda House relocation opposed

April 22nd, 2008 - 10:13 pm ICT by admin  

Chennai, April 22 (IANS) The Tamil Nadu government’s reported move to relocate Vivekananda House, presently maintained by the Sri Ramakrishna Mission, from its present seafront location has triggered an angry reaction from Hindu organisations. “This measure is puzzling because Chief Minister (M.) Karunanidhi had hailed the Ramakrishna Mission as ‘the Everest amongst NGOs’ Dec 20, 1999 - a month before granting a 10-year lease to it to maintain Swami Vivekananda House as a museum. The move only betrays that the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) regime is blatantly anti-Hindu and anti-national in character,” Rama Gopalan, who heads the Hindu Front, told IANS Tuesday.

Gopalan indicated that various Hindu organisations would hold state-wide agitations and get the matter raised in parliament if the DMK regime refused to drop the move within the next 10 days.

“While there is no official communication to the Math, reports said that the government wants it only for its Tamil Centre. So, if the government only wants it to relocate the exhibition of photographs and artefacts of Swami Vivekananda to a better place, there is nothing wrong with the move,” a top government official said on condition of anonymity.

“We have only received an oral advice from a businessman close to the government, whom we do not wish to identify at this moment. However, our mission’s seniors are consulting legal experts to explore the next step,” a Math spokesperson said.

Swami Vivekananda stayed at the beachfront house for six days in 1897 after his return from the US. The Math moved to Mylapore in southern Chennai in 1906 following the sale of the property in an auction.

The Tamil Nadu government permitted the Ramakrishna Math to occupy the property for 10 years in January 2000.

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