A memorial for Swami Vivekananda to mark his stay in Mysuru in 1892 is set to be a reality with the performance of the inauguration ceremony here on Wednesday. Amid the chanting of Vedic hymns and mantras by the monks of Sri Ramakrishna Ashram, the groundbreaking ceremony was performed for the ₹36.23 crore project which will focus on personality development of young people. Swami Vivekananda had stayed at the Niranjan Mutt in Mysuru for a few days and was a guest of the Maharaja of Mysuru Chamarajendra Wadiya X before leaving for the United States to participate in the World Parliament of Religions in 1893. Therefore, a memorial was proposed on the site and the land transferred to Ramakrishna Mission which was given the responsibility to complete the project. The memorial will also have a cultural center and an amphitheater and in addition to the spiritual and philosophical center, it will also be a training center helping youth by offering job-oriented vocational training. The project includes regular conduct of personality development courses, training of young people in rural development, provision of information and education on Indian culture and philosophy, training in music and fine arts, a training unit to prepare students for competitions, etc. A museum with photographs and messages from Swami Vivekananda and Ramakrishna Paramahamsa will also be part of the project. Suttur Seer Sri Shivaratri Deshikendra Swamiji who spoke said it was a historic day as the project commemorates Swami Vivekananda’s stay in Mysuru before he embarked on a tour of the United States to spread the glory of Indian culture and philosophy. Although there is a memorial for Swami Vivekananda in Chicago where he first addressed the World Parliament of Religions, it is fitting that there is a memorial in Mysuru where the seer stayed before he left for the United States, he added. Swami Muktidananda, president of Ramakrishna Ashram, Mysuru, said it was a 10-year-old resolution coming to fruition and the place where Swami Vivekananda lived was in a dilapidated state for decades before efforts were made to restore its sanctity. SL Bhyrappa, Kannada literator and Saraswathi Samman Laureate, said Mysuru has done a lot of commendable works and Swami Vivekananda Memorial is one of them. “But there have always been people who opposed any work and so this was the memorial,” he said, referring to protests against the project as a school in Kannada was to be moved to an adjacent building to pave the way for the memorial. The matter landed in court and dragged on for 10 years before the High Court order cleared the way for the memorial to be built. A host of religious leaders and representatives of various pooches, elected officials including the District Minister responsible ST Somashekar, MPs Yathindra Siddaramaiah, SARamdas, L.Nagendra, Mysuru MP Pratap Simha, Vice Chancellor of the University of Mysore Hemantha Kumar etc. were present. Security was reinforced and the access roads to the site were blocked by the police in view of the protest of some of the activists.