US-Educated Yaduveer Wadiyar, 23, is Mysuru's New 'Maharaja'

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Mysuru's new Maharaja Yaduveer Wadiyar


Mysuru:  It's a long way from a university on the East Coast of the United States where Yaduveer Wadiyar was studying, to the Amba Vilas Palace in Mysuru. And a long way from the year 1399 when the Wadiyar dynasty began its rule of the kingdom of Mysore to the year 2015 when the coronation of a new king is a private affair in the Republic of India.

23-year-old Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar was today crowned the new Maharaja, becoming the titular head of the Wodiyar family. The man who, in past years, would have been called the king.


(Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar seated on a silver throne during his coronation ceremony)

The young man had said he was interested in promoting tourism in the area - and that he needed time to get used to the rituals. The last coronation in 1974 was of his uncle, Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar, who died in 2013.

But Republic or not, Mysoreans still keep an eye on what is going on in the Palace.

A traditional lungi-clad man stopped his bicycle to tell us, "Mysore Maharaja is good, clever, graceful and loyal. We are all grateful to family. I am happy for this programme."

Puttuswamy, a constable outside the palace said, "Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar (the late head of the family) saved his property with difficulty. Srikantadatta's wife has faith in Yaduveer to save that property."

Another constable, Ramakrishna, added, "We have faith that they will preserve the traditions of the family."

Centuries-old traditions is made smaller in a democracy. But even in the 21st century, they remain fascinating.


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