Swami Vivekananda is an example of leadership qualities and charity, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa said here today.

“Swami Vivekananda popularised the pride of Hinduism around the world. He taught self-respect and equality. Possessing extreme knowledge and will power, he was an example of leadership and charity,” she said.

Above all, he was a great patriot who exhorted the youth to join him in his quest for national development, she said at the 150th anniversary celebrations of Swami Vivekananda here.

Recalling from the Swami’s life, she said his guru, Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa, had shown him that service to people was divine.

Lauding the spiritual service rendered by Sri Ramakrishna Mission, founded by Swami Vivekananda after his guru’s demise, she said that it was involved in serving the nation, people and God.

Jayalalithaa said even profit-oriented corporates earmark a part of their earnings towards social service these days.

“At the same time, there are some in this country who claim to be doing public service or being in public life but are selfish,” she said without naming anybody.

Swami Vivekananda was a big inspiration for her even before she made her plunge into politics, she said, adding that she had made a mention about him in an interview soon after joining politics.

“Swami Vivekananda did public service as an ascetic. On his footsteps, I have taken political renunciation to serve the people. I have no selfishness and I need nothing. I have no one. People of Tamil Nadu mean everything to me,” she said.

She layed foundation stone for a Cultural Trust by Sri Ramakrishna Mission here and announced Rs 2 crore for it on behalf of the Tamil Nadu government.

(This article was published on February 27, 2013)
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