Kolkata, Dec 3(UNI) Swami Atmasthananda was today unanimously elected the 15th president of the Ramakrishna Mission , by its board of trustees, suceeding Swami Gahananda, who passed away last month.
The 88-year-old monk, who was born in 1919 at Sabajpur, near Dhaka, had his spiritual initiation from Swami Vijnanananda, a disciple of Sri Ramakrishna, in 1938 and joined the Ramakrishna Mission at the Belur Math in 1941.
After serving the organisation at the Belur Math, Deoghar Vidyapith and Mayavati Advaita Ashrama, Swami Atmasthananda served Swami Virajananda, the then president of the Mission.
Swami Atmasthananda was sent to Rangoon (now Yangon) Sevashrama as its secretary in 1958 and served there till 1965 after military rulers took over the Sevashrama.
He was elected a trustee of the Ramakrishna Math and member of the Governing Body of the Ramakrishna Mission in 1973. In 1975, he was appointed an assistant secretary. He was also appointed secretary of the relief operations of the organisation.
Under his stewardship, the Mission conducted massive relief and rehabilitation operations in various parts of India, Nepal and Bangladesh.
He became the general secretary of the Mission in 1992 and served in that position till 1997 when he became its vice-president.
As vice-president, he in various parts of the country and visited many branches of the Mission spreading the message of Sri Ramakrishna, Sri Sarada Devi and Swami Vivekananda.