News Karnataka
Tuesday, September 27 2022

Mysuru: Jayalakshmi Mansion handing over opposed

Jayalakshmi Mansion
Photo Credit : By Author

Mysuru: Following a move of University of Mysore authorities to hand over Jayalakshmivilasa Mansion in Manasagangotri to Centre of Excellence for Studies in Classical Kannada for a period of 30 years, a section of heritage lovers in the City have expressed grave concern decrying it as a plot by a Department to grab the heritage property.

The heritage lovers, academicians and activists led by historian Prof. P. V. Nanjaraj Urs directly alleged that public representatives of Mysuru have colluded with others to usurp Jayalakshmivilas Mansion.

Urs flanked by former VC of University of Mysore Prof J. Shashidhar Prasad and Former Syndicate Member Dr. K. Mahadev said that “the
imposing Jayalakshmivilas Mansion is like a crown of the Varsity but the member of Parliament and Kannada and Culture Minister Sunil Kumar along with VC have hatched a plot to grab the land, having a scant concern for the conservation of heritage structure.”

Urs said “the erstwhile King Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar’s sister Jayalakshmi Vilas’ son-in-law Sardar Basavaraj Urs agreed to hand over the mansion and vast expanse of 360 acres of land in the year 1959, when the then VC of Mysore University Kuvempu sought to establish Manasagangotri campus. Though the royals agreed for Rs. 10 lakh, they returned Rs. two lakh as a donation for the cause of education and took the remaining Rs. 8 lakh.”

In 2001 Varisty had a MOU with Infosys Foundation chairperson Sudha Murty to conserve the mansion at the cost of Rs. 1.7 Crore. It is clearly mentioned in the MoU that the Varsity will maintain the mansion. Now, the authorities are out to violate the MoU, and we are ready to move court, warned Dr. K. Mahadev former Syndicate Member of University of Mysore.

As a tribute, the then VC (Prof S. N. Hegde) had even planned to change the name of the Jayalakshmivilas Mansion to Sudhamurthy Museum of Arts and Folk. But Urs condemned the move and stopped the bid to rechristen the renovated heritage structure. Even Sudha Murty was against changing the name, asserted Urs.

Former VC J. Shashidhar Prasad who also raised a banner of revolt, voiced against giving the prestigious property to Classical Kannada Study Centre. If they want to create the basic infrastructure, they can utilise the 4.2 acres land already allotted to the centre, he added.

Activist Arvind Sharma and KRS Party Leader Somasundar warned of calling for aggressive agitation, if the University went ahead in violation of the rules and regulation.”

Environmentalist Bhanu Mohan, KRS Leader M. S. Praveen, District Secretary Nagaraj, General Secretary Vijay Kumar, Ravikumar and Mahadevappa were present.

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