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Doreswamy Iyengar

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Doreswamy Iyengar

Doreswamy Iyengar, generally known as Mysore V. Doreswamy Iyengar (1920–1997), was a famous Carnatic musician and an exponent of the Veena. Born into a family of musicians, His father, Venkatesha Iyengar, was himself a Vainika and a musician in the court of the Maharaja of Mysore.He started learning the Veena from his father at an early age and soon became the disciple of Veena Venkatagiriyappa one of the foremost Vainikas of the day in Mysore.

He performed in the esteemed presence of the then Maharaja of Mysore at the tender age of 12. The Maharaja liked his performance and awarded him a 50 rupee silver coin. The Maharaja also asked Veena Venkatagiriyappa to nurture the boy as he thought Doreswamy Iyengar would bring laurels to the state of Mysore.He gave his first public performance in 1943, in the Bangalore Gayana Samaja. He participated in music conferences including the one in Shiraz, Iran in 1969. Over the course of his career, accolades poured in. He was awarded the Padma Vibhushan, the Chowdiah National memorial award, the Sangeetha Kalaratna of the Bangalore gayana Samaj, the Sangeetha Kala Shikhamani of the Indian Fine Arts society and the Sangeetha Kalanidhi of the Madras Music academy.

He studied BA in the Maharaja's College in Mysore. He was the music director of the All India Radio in Bangalore. The University of Mysore conferred on him an Honorary Doctorate in 1975.

Sir M. Visvesvaraya

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Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya, popularly and affectionately known as Sir M.V., was born on September 15, 1860 in a village known as Muddenahalli in Chikballapur Taluk, Kolar District. His father died in Kurnool when Visvesvaraya was just 15 years old. Visvevaraya completed his lower secondary schooling in Chikballapur. After schooling he joined Central College in Bangalore for his graduation

If “world famous” has almost become part of the name of Brindavan Gardens, which was Mysore’s biggest tourist attraction outside of the Palace till the Cauvery dispute broke out, it is the handiwork of Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya, chief engineer of the Krishnaraja Sagar dam. In setting up Asia’s first hydro-electric power plant not far away at Shivanasamudram, Sir MV showed 100 years ago what enlightened leadership and engineering vision can do for the masses. One hundreds years later, each summer, Mysore’s only Bharat Ratna reminds Mysoreans of the lack of both.

Sir M.Visvesvaraya retired in 1908 and Sri Krishnarajendra Wodeyar, Maharaja of Mysore, was eager to secure the services of Visvesvaraya to serve Mysore. He joined as Chief Engineer in Mysore because he wanted challenging opportunities. Sir M.Visvesvaraya had earned a reputation for his honesty, integrity, ability and intelligence. He had introduced compulsory education in the State which later was embodied as a fundamental right in the Constitution of independent India.


K. Pattabhi Jois

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Pattabhi Jois

S.T. Krishnamacharya and B.K.S. Iyengar may have preceded him in fame; and kundalini yoga may be more famous. But in transmitting ‘Ashtanga Yoga’ to the world and restoring Mysore’s place as the yoga capital in the country, few will ever match what octogenarian Pattabhi Jois has done. Starting out from a tiny nook in Lakshmipuram, Jois teaches the way to achieve the union between the jeevatma and the paramatma to the who’s who of show business, including Madonna, Sting and Gwyneth Paltrow. And on any given day, Gokulam, where he now resides, resembles an Olympics Games village, with hundreds of foreigners practising the craft at the hands of Jois and his grandson, Sharath, when not zipping around the streets.K. Pattabhi Jois has seen 91 summers. Or winters, if you like. But… But the eyes still flash bright hues. The smile is friendly and full. It doesn’t matter that it is denture assisted. The skin is taut and blemishless.So much like his resolve to do what he has been doing in stages almost every waking moment for 77 of his 91 years. Learning, lecturing and teaching yoga. His has been a journey. Long, timeless, poignant, exciting, frustrating, fulfilling and in a sense, eternal.

Perhaps the greatest living guru of ashtanga yoga in the world, Jois lives in Gokulam, Mysore. If he is not teaching in London or Paris or Melbourne or New York or San Francisco, that is. His is the life of a man whose soul has been satiated by the sheer attainment of a life’s ambition; the fulfilling of a karmic yearning; the continuing of a tradition that is steeped in his very being.To him life is yoga. And yoga is life. There is nothing beyond it. Not anything that he has tried seeking. He ran away from his home in the village of Kowshika near Hassan as a 14-year-old boy. Getting into the train to Mysore from the station at Ambuga, a neighbouring village, four miles away, because he didn’t want any one to notice him or even recognize him.

Jois continued to teach at the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore, now located in the neighbourhood of Gokulam, with his only daughter Saraswathi Rangaswamy (b. 1941) and his grandson Sharath (b. 1971), until May 18, 2009 when he died aged 93 of natural causes.

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