• Sahana Kulkarni

Do you know what Sir M.V told Pandit Nehru? Tales from Muddenahalli.

Sir M Vishweshwaraiah is a household name here in South India as he is closely associated to river Kaveri which is a lifeline to majority of people in Karnataka and Tamilnadu. He was Chief Engineer for Construction of famous Krishna Raja Sagara Dam. The most celebrated engineers of India. His grand stature is not just restricted to South India but is spread across the Country. I happened to visit his house where he was born and the house which was constructed much later which is next to the house where he was born.

Sir M.V's house where he was born, Muddenahalli

Muddenahalli is a small village near to Chikkaballapur which is the birth place of Sir M.V. From the highway it is at the distance of 7-8 kms near to Nandi hills. Starting his journey from a small village on to becoming Chief Engineer and Dewan of Mysore state is commendable. Sir M.V was born on 15th September, 1861 and his birthday is celebrated as "ENGINEER'S DAY" in India.

Sir M.V's house which is turned in to a museum.

The house which was constructed at a much later point of time in Sir M.V's life is converted as a museum which is run by Sir M. Vishveshwaraiah Trust. The two storied house has collections of Sir M.V in it. While the ground floor is open for public, entry is restricted to the first floor. The house where Sir M.V was born is locked.

Some of the Notable things preserved in the museum:

  • Bharat Ratna award which is the highest civilian award of India.

  • His passport in which his nationality is "British Subject by Birth".

  • Many laurels for his achievements.

  • His typewriter dated to 1921

  • Photographs of him with notable leaders of India and with the King of Mysore.

  • His marks card and the appointment letters.

  • His appointment letter as the Chief Engineer of Mysore State.

  • Letter by King George V of United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, commemorating his Knighthood.

  • His State bank of Mysore passbook printout, which had 18,000 INR at the time of 1918.

  • Paper clips he used.

  • Few papers with his handwriting which is so neat.

  • Many books which was his collection.

  • His teacher in School Mr. Charles Waters had gifted him a thick dictionary which he used most of his life.

  • Paper articles related to his achievements.

  • Carve out of Jhamshedji Tata made out of Tata Pig Iron.

  • The certificate for passing Marathi exam in 4th attempt.

In his bedroom there is a bed in which he used to sleep. Many leather bags, radio of olden days(Big one Of course), chair in which his idol in sitting posture is kept, walking sticks.

He was a person who was for pro Industrialisation, who opposed Ghandiji because he was more towards Village Industrialisation. When the then Prime Minister Pandit Nehru wrote him a letter asking him to receive Bharat Ratna, he replied back saying "If you are expecting me to praise your government then you will be disappointed, because i am fact finding man". Such a daring personality isn't it.

The place where he is resting in peace. His Samadhi.

Most interesting thing for me was his everyday routine. Even when his age was 95, he used to work and study. He lived a grand life of 101 years. His samadhi is near to his house surrounded by a garden. I am sure he is an Inspiration to many. Do visit this place if you get a chance.

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