SOMNATH:The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of multiple projects in Somnath, Gujarat today via video conferencing.
The projects inaugurated include the Somnath Promenade, Somnath Exhibition Centre and reconstructed temple precinct of Old (Juna) Somnath.
The Prime Minister also laid the foundation stone of Shree Parvati Temple during the event. Lal Krishan Advani, Union Home Minister, Union Tourism Minister along with CM and Deputy CM of Gujarat were present on the occasion.
Congratulating the devotees all over the world, the Prime Minister paid tribute to Sardar Patel who showed indomitable will power for the revival of India’s ancient glory. Sardar Patel linked Somnath Mandir with independent spirit of independent India.
Modi said that it is ‘our good fortune that we are taking forward the efforts of Sardar Saheb in the 75th year of Independence and imparting new splendour to Somnath Temple.
The Prime Minister also remembered LokmataAhilyabai Holkar who renovated several temples from Vishwanath to Somnath. Country is moving forward taking inspiration from the blend of modernity and tradition in her life, said the Prime Minister.
The Prime Minister said that in initiatives like Statue of Unity and transformation of Kachch, Gujarat has seen from the close quarters, the results of linking modernity with tourism. ‘It has been demand of every time period that we look for new possibilities in religious tourism and strengthen the links between pilgrimage and local economy” the Prime Minister pointed out.
The Prime Minister said that Lord Shiva gives rise to development and creativity amidst annihilation and destruction. Shiv is unending, can’t be expressed and eternal. ‘Our faith in Shiva makes us aware of our existence beyond the limits of time, gives us the strength to face the challenges of time’, said the Prime Minister.
Reflecting on the history of the revered temple, the Prime Minister recalled the repeated destruction of the temple and how the temple rose after every attack. ‘It is a symbol of the belief that truth can’t be defeated by falsehood and faith can’t be crushed by terror.’
“The destructive powers, the thinking that tries to establish an empire on the basis of terror, may dominate temporarily, but, its existence is never permanent, it cannot suppress humanity for a long time. This was true when some attackers were demolishing Somnath, it is equally true even today, when the world is apprehensive of such ideologies.”, the Prime Minister insisted.
The Somnath Promenade has been developed under PRASHAD (Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive) Scheme at a total cost of over ₹ 47 crore. The Somnath Exhibition Centre, developed in the premises of ‘Tourist Facilitation Centre’, displays the exhibits from dismantled parts of old Somnath temple and its sculptures having Nagar style temple architecture of old Somnath.
The reconstructed temple precinct of Old (Juna) Somnath has been completed by Shree Somnath Trust with a total outlay of ₹ 3.5 crore. This temple is also referred to as AhilyabaiTemple since it was built by Queen Ahilyabai of Indore, when she found that the old temple was in ruins. The entire old temple complex has been holistically redeveloped for the safety of pilgrims and with augmented capacity.
Shree Parvati Temple is proposed to be constructed with a total outlay of ₹ 30 Cr. This will include temple construction in Sompura Salats Style, development of GarbhaGriha and Nritya Mandap.