MYSURU: RK Narayan’s many admirers and litterateurs will soon be able to take a stroll across the writer’s house in Yadavgiri, where Malgudi’s creator spent his days weaving his wondrous tales. The house is being transformed into a museum, and is expected to be completed by the end of the month.
The two-storeyed bungalow in the city’s cultural hub is being renovated and will house some of the writer’s belongings, which have been donated by his granddaughter, Bhuvaneshwari. While the property will be preserved as a museum to illustrate Narayan’s tryst with the city, memorabilia such as medals, furniture and books from his personal library will be arranged in the same manner as they were when he lived in the house to transform it into a living museum, in accordance with suggestions from experts.
Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) commissioner CG Betsurmath said that the museum would be a memorial to Narayan in his ‘karmabhoomi’. “Narayan’s family members, who are in Chennai, have given us furniture, medals and books. We have requested them to help us arrange these belongings in the same way they were during his days here. Bhuvaneshwari agreed to help us convert the house into a museum,” he added.
Built in 1952, Narayan lived in the house for decades before moving to Chennai in the 1990s, where he lived till his death in 2001. Sayyaji Rao Road near Mysuru Palace was among the writer’s favourite haunts in the city, while Narayan also enjoyed leisurely strolls across Yadavgiri and Vonti Koppal. Scholars have argued that these walks helped him situate his characters in the fictional Malgudi.
After the structure was partially demolished in September 2011, Betsurmath declared the property a heritage structure by invoking the provisions of Karnataka Town and Country Planning Act, 1961. “Landscaping work on the museum will be completed soon and it will be ready by the end of the month,” he said.
Former vice-chancellor of Rajiv Gandhi University in Arunachal Pradesh, KC Belliappa, who personally knew Narayan, has suggested formation of a panel comprising litterateurs, Narayan scholars and his relatives to promote the historical site as a living museum.
“In Sabarmati Ashram, Mahatma Gandhi is worshipped. The MCC should ensure that Narayan’s museum is well preserved,” he told TOI.
Credits ET Realty