Vivekananda stone cot consecrated in Samskriti Bhavan
Vivekananda stone cot consecrated in
By S Chandrasekhar
Swami Vivekananda had meditated at the confluence of the three seas for three days in 1892 at the now famous Vivekananda rock in Kanyakumari. A massive memorial is now there, since 1970, due to the efforts of the late Eknath Ranade and the Vivekananda Kendra.
On his return, Swami Vivekananda had stayed at the house of Prof Manomaniam Sundaram Pillai of University College, Thiruvananthapuram for 9 days and rested on a massive 6×2.5 feet stone cot made of granite (Krishna Shila). The descendants of the Prof have preserved that cot for almost 120 years and wanted it to be installed at an apt place. They eventually decided to hand it over to Bharateeya Vichara Kendram headquarters Samskriti Bhavan in Thiruvananthapuram.
On January 11 evening, after puja and aarati by Swami Thathwaroopananda of Ramakrishna Ashram, the Shila Manch (cot) was placed in a Rath and accompanied by traditional Kerala Panchavadyam, Thalapoli and hundreds of youth in cars and bikes, it started its journey towards Samskriti Bhavan. Accepting puja and receptions at various junctions, the Rath reached Kawdiar Palace at 5.00 pm, where Maharaja of Travancore, Uthradom Thirunal Marthanda Varma, inaugurated the puja ceremony by lighting lamp. Later, the Maharaja, former LDF Transport Minister Sankaranarayana Pillai and a huge gathering, offered flowers to the Shila Manch.
The Rath arrived at the Martyrs Square at 5.45 pm where former Union Minister O Rajagopal offered puja and in a procession led by him and VHP leader Kummanam Rajasekharan, it proceeded to Samskriti Bhavan. There BVK Director Padmasri P Parameswaran performed aarati and the Shila Manch was placed on specially made granite pedestal.
Speaking on the occasion, Parameswarji said it was God’s will that the Shila Manch should come to Samskriti Bhavan which is adjacent to University College. Swamiji would have definitely walked in front of it to see professors who were residing nearby. District president of BVK, Dr KU Devadas presided.
On January 12, Swamiji’s birth day, a huge youth rally with thousands of students in Vivekananda inscribed T Shirts, was inaugurated in front of Kerala University headquarters by cricketer Sreeshanth, Kerala Sports Council President and Asiad Gold Medaller Padmini Thomas and Asiad Medaller Selvam. They carried placards with Vivekananda’s pictures and epoch-making slogans of Swamiji.
Addressing the youth at Panchayat Hall, Parameswarji said Rajiv Gandhi had in 1984, proclaimed Swamiji’s birthday as National Youth Day to propagate life, mission, ideals and ideology of Vivekananda. “It is an insult to Rajiv Gandhi that the Sonia-led UPA is doing nothing in that direction. Similarly Swamiji had great bhakthi for Vande Mataram that he, in 1901, asked revolutionaries to learn its meaning and act accordingly. But now Vande Mataram is being sidelined attributing communal overtures. This is an insult to Bharat Mata and Swamiji.”
“Swamiji had a national and world view. He wanted the Indians to go to the roots and realise the greatness and advancement of this samskar from Vedic period.
Dr Jayakrishnan, Vice Chancellor of Kerala University said Swami Vivekananda was the hero of Mahatma Gandhi during the freedom struggle. Cricketer Sreeshanth described himself as a fan of Swamiji and a proud Indian.