Swamy Vivekananda
Indian spiritual guru Swamy Vivekananda.Sri Ramakrishna Math, Chennai

In an effort to promote the legacy of spiritual leader Swamy Vivekananda, India will provide a grant of $1.5 million to the University of Chicago (UOC) to establish a Vivekananda Chair called "The Indian Ministry of Culture Vivekananda Chair."

As a part of the initiative, an agreement was signed between the Dean of University of Chicago (UOC) Martha Roth and Joint Secretary in the Indian Ministry of Culture Sanjiv Mittal in the presence of the Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee in Chicago on Sunday.

"In consideration of a grant of US $1.5 million for creation of an endowment, the University of Chicago will establish "The Indian Ministry of Culture Vivekananda Chair" to honour the life and legacy of Swami Vivekananda by promoting fields of study most relevant to his teachings" the agreement reads.

All the expenses connected with the creation and operation of the Vivekananda Chair, such as salary, cost of travel, accommodation, annual presentation, etc., will be met by the interest income generated from the endowment grant of U.S. $1.5 million.

It also mentioned that the University of Chicago will identify and send to the Government of India (GOI) dossiers of two or three candidates whose work epitomizes the legacy of Swami Vivekananda.

According to the agreement, the University of Chicago will take into an account the feedback from the GOI before making its final choice from the pool of selected candidates. The Swami Vivekananda Chair will be held by each scholar for a period of two years.

The scholar, who will be selected in a field of study promoted by Swami Vivekananda,  will be make a public presentation which will be scheduled and organized by the Consul General of India's office at Chicago on a topic that exemplifies and promotes the legacy of Swami Vivekananda.

The agreement also includes "wide publicity" by the UOC for the establishment of the Vivekananda chair, and exchange of research scholars between the University and GOI.