Thiruvananthapuram: Former National General secretary of the BJP, Shri Ram Madhav who is presently the founder-director of India Foundation, said that Swami Ranganathananda was a self evasive saint who stood for Dharma and its eternal values. He said that Swamiji had even declined the highest civilian order of the country Padma Vibhushan in 2000 stating that the award was for him rather than for Sree Ramakrishna Mission. Shri Ram Madhav was delivering the keynote address in a webinar "Remembering Swami Rangathananda in his birthday" organised by Centre for Policy and Development Studies.
The senior BJP leader said that after the Marxist government of West Bengal had tried to take over the Sri Ramakrishna institutions, the Mutt had conducted a case appealing for minority status. However a bench of the Supreme court of India bench headed by Justice MN Venkatachaliah dismissed the appeal stating that neither Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa nor Swami Vivekananda had founded a religion devoid of Hindu religion, he said. He said that Swami Raanganathanada assumed office as President of the Sree Ramakrishna Mission during these turbulent times and steered the mission strongly holding on to Dharma.
The senior BJP leader said that Kerala is Gods own country owing to its natural beauty as well as owing to the Rishi Parampara of the state starting from Adi Sankaracharya, Sree Narayana Guru, Mata Amritanandamayi, Swami Chinmayananda, Swami Ranganathananda and many others. He said that Swami Ranganathanda and Swami Chinmayananda were instrumental in connecting the Upper echelons of the Hindu society with Sanathana Dharma and Bhagavat Gita and taking away this society from western influence.
He also said that Swami Ranganathanada was inspired by Sree Ramakrishna Paramahamsa and his teachings at the age of fourteen after reading a book by Swami Nikhilananda and added that it would have been providence that such a book lander in the hands of a fourteen-year-old at a remote village in Kerala a hundred years ago. He said that Swami Ranganathanada had later on mentioned that this book had created an explosion within him and he later joined the Sree Ramakrishna order at the age of seventeen. He said that Swamiji went on to head the Sree Ramakrishna Mission from 1998 till 2005 when he attained Maha SamadhI on April 25, 2005. He also pointed out that Swami Ranganathanada had travelled across the length and breadth of the country like Adi Sankaracharya and established Ramakrishna mission institutions including educational institutes and hospitals in remotest places of the country including North Eastern states catering to the most underprivileged.
Shri Ram Madhav said that the Indian society has awaits been inspired by the teachings of great monks and Swami Ranganathanda was a great saint whose teachings on Vedanta and Bhagavad Gita had changed the lives of many people across the country and abroad.