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Rashtrapati Bhavan : 04.07.2016

The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee inaugurated Swami Vivekanand Sabhagar at Kathak Kendra of Sangeet Natak Akademi in New Delhi today(July 4, 2016).

Speaking on the occasion, the President said that Swami Vivekananda embodied the ancient spiritual idea of India - an India that was open, assimilative and ever evolving. Kathak similarly, is a primary Indian dance form that openly embraced influences, assimilated them and evolved and perpetuated itself since its origin in the 4th Century BC and during the times of the Mahabharat.

The President said that Swami Vivekananda, whose name adorns this beautiful auditorium that has been inaugurated today, was not only a good singer but was also an accomplished pakhawaj player. We talk so much about Swamiji’s profound spiritual prowess, his singular erudition, elocution and charm, that his unquestionable musicality is often forgotten. Not only was he a performer himself, the very first book he wrote was on the subject of music. He was trained in Hindustani Classical music, and it is said that towards the latter part of his life, at dawn he would tune his tanpura and sing a dhrupad composition by Tansen in the Raga Ahir Bhairav to awaken the other ashram-dwellers of the Belur Math.

The President said that in carrying forward and strengthening the great artistic legacy of India, the Sangeet Natak Akademi and the Kathak Kendra have done an exemplary job. He wished them continued success in their endeavours and exhorted them to strive for greater reach. He dedicated the Swami Vivekanand Sabhagar to all the gurus,students and disciples of Kathak and hoped that Swami Vivekananda will forever bless us with his vision of excellence.

Among the dignitaries present on the occasion were Shri Mahesh Sharma, Union Minister for Culture, Shri N.K. Sinha, Secretary (Culture) and Shri Shekhar Sen, Chairman of Sangeet Natak Akademi.

This release issued at 1935 hrs.