Paramparaa – The Tradition Continues…

Enriching the Ahobila Math tradition through Acharya Kainkaryam – Sri Neelamegham Swami

  In the Srivaishnava Sampradaya, the Acharya plays a very prominent role. The Ahobila Math has a hoary past with the Lord Sri Lakshmi Nrsimha Himself offering sanyasa ashrama to the first Jeeyar of the Math, Srimath Adivan Satakopa Yatheendra Mahadesikan.   From that period the Ahobila Math tradition has been ever expanding. Many scholars and sishyas have enriched the Math tradition through various activities and kainkaryams. Sri Thooppul R. Neelamegham Swami is one among those kainkaryaparas who have rendered yeoman services for the Math and its Acharyas.  Sri Neelamegham Swami has left no stone unturned in spreading the activities of the Math in Andhra Pradesh & Telangana.  

Sri Neelamegham Swami’s Satabhisheka Mahotsavam (80th birthday) was celebrated on July 31st, 2022 in a traditional manner.  The attendees included many Matham Sishyas, family, friends and well-wishers. Sri Neelamegham Swami was honoured with Maalai mariyadai and Prasadam from various Divya Desams such as Ahobilam, Sri Rangam, Tirumala – Tirupati, Therazhundur and Abhimana Sthalams such as Bhadrachalam. A souvenir based on Sri Neelamegham Swami’s life and Kainkaryam to Sri Ahobila Math was released on behalf of with a handwritten Srimukham from Srimad Azhagiyasingar, Srivan Sathakopa Sri Ranganatha Yateendra Maha Desikan, a message from the Srikaryam of the Sannidhi, Dr. Padmanabhachariar and Sri Gopalachary (Secretary – Ahobila Math Hyderabad).  All attendees expressed their wishes and prayed for his health to bestow more Kainkaryam to Swami.

With the Niyamanam and anugraham of present His Holiness 46th pattam Azhagiyasingar, the Swami has been functioning as Chairman for the Ahobila Math branches in Tirumala, Tirupati,  Kadapa , Ahobilam ,Kurnool, Gadwal, and Bhadrachalam.He is also a Trustee of the Nava Ahobilam Nirmanam Trust and Sri Annamacharya Nitya Annadana Trust in Tirumala.  

He has been organising discourses by scholars and prominent vidwans to propagate the Math’s Sampradaya and the Srivaishnava philosophy and honours them in a fitting manner.

The Swami was born at Devakottai in Sivaganga district of Tamil Nadu in 1942. His father is Sri U.Ve Ramanuja Iyengar and his mother, Srimathi Komalam.   Sri U.Ve Ramanuja Iyengar was a great scholar in Nalayira Divya Prabandam, Vedas and stotras He was managing the Estate and the Annadana Satram at Kapisthalam in Tamil Nadu. He received, among stotras and Bhagavad vishayams, the Nrsimha Mantra Upadesam from the 40th Azhagiyasingar of the Ahobila Math Sri Lakshmi Nrsimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Ranganatha Yateendra Mahadesikan.

Sri Neelamegham Swami completed his SSLC in Papanasam near Kapisthalam. Later, he moved to Delhi where he took up some clerical employment while continuing his studies, the Swami completed his Intermediate in Gwalior. Later he completed B.Com in 1965 in Delhi University. After the UPSC exam in 1963, he was selected as a Junior Stenographer in the Central Government. With an eye on future prospects and on the insistence of a college friend, the Swami left the Government and joined an advertising company having its branch in Delhi in 1965.  In a major turning point of his career, the Swami was appointed the Branch Manager of the F.D Stewart Private Limited in 1975.  Later in 1980 the Swami moved to the Hyderabad branch of the company. He settled down in Hyderabad after taking charge of the company in the place of well-known cricketer M.L. Jaisimha.  

With his growing clout among the media friends and Public Relations companies, Sri  Neelamegham Swami became a partner and became Vice-President (South) in the Delhi-based Akshara Advertising company in 1985.   He later opened Akshara Advertising branches in Chennai and Bengaluru to become its Managing Director in 2005. The excessive work pressure and busy schedule took a toll on the Swami’s health. So, he quit his job in 2015.

Association with Ahobila Math

On the instructions of the 45th Azhagiyasingar, Sri Lakshmi Nrsimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yateendra Mahadesikan, the Swami joined as an office-bearer of the Hyderabad Math. As a member of the organising committee, he strove for the success of the Dwidasabdhi (20 years) celebrations of the Hyderabad Math. In the celebrations held in 1999, the Swami was instrumental in bringing out a souvenir publication. The Swami was also one of the Organising Committee members that successfully conducted the Silver Jubilee celebrations in 2004.

In 2006, he was appointed the member of H.H. 45th Jeer’s Satabhishekam organising committee. He visited many Divyadesams along with the 45th Azhagiyasingar.  Sri Neelamegham Swami also became a member of the central core committee overseeing the functioning of the Math. Sri K. Devanathan, who was the Secretary of the Ahobila Math Managing committee, enrolled Neelamegham Swami as a member of the Hyderabad Math.  Later, the Swami became the Joint Secretary and Vice-Chairman of the Math. Presently under the Niyamanam of HH 46th Azhagiyasingar, Sri Neelamegham Swami has been functioning as the Chairman of the Ahobila Math Managing committee, Hyderabad apart from other Branches in AP & Telangana.

Azhagiyasingar’s Anugraham

Sri Neelamegham Swami ensured a grand welcome for the 46th Azhagiyasingar when he visited Hyderabad after taking charge of the Math. Srimad Azhagiyasingar ordered Neelamegham Swami to take care of the other Maths in Telugu States in addition to the Hyderabad Ahobila Math.

The Swami headed the team to organise the 40th anniversary celebrations of the Hyderabad Ahobila Math in a grand manner in 2019.  His Holiness Srivan Satakopa Sri Ranganatha Yateendra Mahadesikan graced the event and released a special commemorative publication to mark the event. Sri Neelamegham edited this publication. Sri Neelamegham Swami also compiled a book detailing the address, contact persons, phone numbers, facilities etc.  of Ahobila Math branches all over India, which was lauded by Srimad Azhagiyasingar and the devotees.

    Sri Neelamegham Swami has been working hard in expanding the reach of the Ahobila Math and its activities.  With the blessings of the Acharyas and Lord Lakshmi Nrsimha, let us pray for the longevity and well-being of the Swami in continuing his contributions to the Srivaishnava Sampradaya.  

-T. Srinivasan 

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