MYSURU: President Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday called the last maharaja of princely Mysore state, the late Jayachamaraja Wadiyar, as the “most eminent monarch, democrat and an exceptional ruler of his times.” The best tribute one can pay to the late maharaja on his birth centenary is by emulating his values in our daily life, he said.
He was speaking during the launch of the book - Sri Vidya Sankeeertana Sudhalahari - containing 94 Carnatic compositions of the late maharaja, that has been brought out by His Highness Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar Foundation, as a part of the birth centenary celebration of Jayachamaraja Wadiyar.
Kovind traced the journey of Jayachamaraja Wadiyar as a monarch and later as Raja Pramukh of the Mysuru state. In a short span of time, he had immensely contributed to the field of art, culture, music, philosophy, ecology and wildlife to name a few, he said.
Such was the democratic values imbibed in him that soon after ascending the throne, he implemented the Constitution of princely Mysore state. In his joint address to the Mysuru legislature session on June 9, 1941, he had noted that, “The torch of constitutional progress has been handed down to me as a family heritage.”
When the country became independent, he was the first among the rulers to sign the instrument of accession, which was accepted by the government of India on August 16, Kovind said. Following popular demand, he was also appointed Raja Pramukh, when the new state of Mysore was formed, he added.
In the 12th century, social reformer Basaveshwara had also thrust the importance of democracy, the President said. The late maharaja was a philosopher, musician, political thinker and philanthropist whose contributions in the area of music and also philosophy is immense.
He had equal expertise in western and Carnatic music. It was also the reason why he became the first member and president of Sangeet Natak Academy. He also encouraged the translation of scriptures from Sanskrit to Kannada, he said.
As a philanthropist, he was instrumental in laying the foundation of Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd in Bengaluru to support the government, donated Cheluvamba Mansion to set up Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI), followed by the setting up of All India Institute of Speech and Hearing (AIISH) in Mysuru, and National Tuberculosis Institute in Bengaluru.
Before summing up, the President recalled the quote of former President S Radhakrishnan, who had lauded Jayachamaraja Wadiyar as ‘Aradhak Sadhak.’
Earlier, the President also unveiled the plaque of Jayachamaraja Wadiyar Centre for Higher Education and Learning. The centre will come up on 22 acres of land near the Chamundi Hills foothills. Governor Vajubai R Vala and chairperson of Wadiyar Foundation Pramoda Devi Wadiyar were present.