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Tuesday, September 05, 2006

 

Largest Hindu Temple In Europe Consecrated

LONDON, Aug 28 (Bernama) -- Amid chanting of sacred Vedic hymns, the largest Hindu temple in Europe was consecrated Sunday in Tividale near the British city of Birmingham, Press Trust of India (PTI) reports.Fifteen priests were specially flown in from India to perform the "Kumbhabhishekam" of Shri Venkateswara Balaji Temple in Sanskrit to sanctify the temple, the news report quoted NRI entrepreneur and hotelier Joginder Sangar, Trustee and Chief Treasurer of the temple as saying.The architecture of the temple is based on the famous Tirupati-Tirumala Temple, one of the holiest sites in South India which is visited by millions of people every year.The temple, built at the cost of millions, is situated on a 13-acre site in Dudley Road East in Tividale.Another one million pounds will be needed to complete the landscaping around the temple, which is dedicated to Lord Balaji, an incarnation of the God Vishnu.Scores of sculptors from India have worked on intricate carvings of Hindu deities which adorn the walls, pillars, ceilings and roof of the temple.V.P. Narayan Rao, founding chairman of the temple, said the funds were provided by donations from devotees and a grant from the Millennium Commission."This is the fulfillment of a long cherished dream, the end of a long road and the beginning of a new era," he said.An estimated 10,000 people from the United Kingdom and Europe visited the temple during the five-day religious festival which concluded Sunday with the installation of a 12-foot statue of Lord Krishna.Bimal Kishna Das, secretary of the National Council of Hindu Temples (Britain), said: "The opening of this great temple will be a wonderful addition to the multi-religious society of Britain, especially in the West Midlands."The idea of the temple was conceived in the 1970s but it was not until 1987 that worshippers acquired the site.

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