The Sivananda Hall situated at the Emperumal Temple in Empangeni, was officially opened on Tuesday,the 24th May by His Holiness, The General Secretary of Divine Life Society, Worldwide, Sri Swami Padmanabhananda from Rishikesh ,India, together with Mr Ishwar Ramlutchman. The construction of the Sivananda Hall, which was sponsored by honorary patron of the Divine Life Society, Rishikesh and philanthropist, Ishwar Ramlutchman, serves s a tribute to the commitment of the Indian community to preserve their religion and culture. More than  300 devotees from various hindu organisations in Empangeni and Richards Bay gathered at the Sivananda Hall to share in the joy of its opening.

The programme commenced with prayer by our beloved, Sri Swami Padmanabhananda and was followed by the unveiling of the plaque and the opening of the Sivananda Hall. Guests then entered the venue and were seated. The programme which comprised of melodious bhajans, a splendid classical dance, and an inspiring message by Sri Swami Padmanabhananda.Mr S V Naicker,  a member of parliament who also addressed the congregation, commented that the completion of the Hall had come as  surprise since the sod turning had taken place only two months prior. Supper was served.

The Emperumal Temple was built over 100 years ago by the workers of Zululand Sugar Mill,  Empangeni adjacent the old sugar mill . The workers came from India as indentured labourers to work in the sugar cane fields. They worked tirelessly and never compromised their Indian culture.

The Sivannda Hall was opened in honour of Sri Swami Sivananda, founder of the Divine Life Society Worldwide and his disciple, Sri Swami Sahajananda.