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Friday, September 17, 2021

Reviving India’s Ancient Glory – Building Modern Infrastructure At Somnath Temple

Prime Minister inaugurates and lays foundation stone of multiple projects in Somnath and says,” It has been a demand of every time period that we look for new possibilities in religious tourism and strengthen the links between pilgrimage and local economy”

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Pradeep Chamaria
Pradeep Chamaria
I am a photojournalist. Love to travel to unknown and unexplored vistas. Since 1992, I make places desirable for other travelers through experiential Travel Writing.

INDIA. New Delhi: The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi recently inaugurated and laid the foundation stone of multiple projects in Somnath, Gujarat via video conferencing. The projects 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.

This auspicious event was joined by Sh. L. K. Advani, Veteran Leader and Trustee Shree Somnath Trust, Sh. Amit Shah (Union Minister of Home Affairs and Cooperation), Sh. Shripad Yesso Naik (Minister of State of Tourism and Ports, Shipping & Waterways), Sh. Vijay Rupani (Chief Minister, Gujarat), Shri Nitinbhai Patel (Dy. Chief Minister Gujarat), Sh. Jawahar Chawda(Minister of Tourism, Gujarat) and Sh. Vasan Ahir (Minister of State of Tourism, Gujarat), and many others.

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Congratulating the devotees all over the world, the Prime Minister paid tribute to Sardar Patel who showed indomitable willpower for the revival of India’s ancient glory. Sardar Patel linked Somnath Mandir with the independent spirit of independent India. Shri 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 Lokmata Ahilyabai Holkar who renovated several temples from Vishwanath to Somnath. The country is moving forward taking inspiration from the blend of modernity and tradition in her life, said the Prime Minister.

PM Modi at the inauguration of multiple projects in Somnath, Gujarat, Photo Credits: PIB

The Prime Minister said that Lord Shiva gives rise to development and creativity amidst annihilation and destruction. Shiva is unending, can’t be expressed, and is 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.

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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.

He said that our thinking should be to learn from history to improve our present and create a new future. Referring to his mantra of ‘Bharat Jodo Andolan’, Shri Modi said that this is not just geographical connectivity but connect in thoughts also.

PM Modi inaugurating multiple projects in Somnath, Gujarat, Photo Credits: PIB
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Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas, and Sabka PrayasThe ‘National Mission on Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual, Heritage Augmentation Drive (PRASHAD)’ was launched by the Ministry of Tourism in the year 2014-15 with the objective of integrated development of identified pilgrimage and heritage destinations. The concept of universal access is the first and foremost dimension that is being taken care of while finalizing and executing the projects under the scheme. The scheme aimed at the creation of pilgrimage / religious and heritage tourism infrastructure development at the destinations. At present total of 37 projects in 24 states (including 15 completed projects) are approved.

The development of Somnath has been proposed as one of the iconic tourism destinations by the Ministry of Tourism under its Integrated Destination Development Scheme (IDDS) for the development of components such as Prabhas Patan Museum, Tourist Amenities, Haat, etc.

Read Also: 12 Jyotirlingas – The Heavenly Sanctuaries of Lord Shiva

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