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1st Hindu stone temple in Abu Dhabi to open for public on March 1



Abu Dhabi

‘s first

Hindu stone temple



by Prime Minister Narendra Modi earlier this month, will open its doors to the



March 1

, as confirmed by the temple authorities.
The public can visit the temple, built at an approximate cost of Rs 700 crore, from 9am-8pm six days a week barring Mondays.
Constructed by the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) Swaminarayan Sanstha, the temple spans over a vast 27-acre site in Abu Mureikhah near Al Rahba, just off the Dubai-Abu Dhabi Sheikh Zayed Highway.

During a dedication ceremony attended by over 5,000 invitees, PM Modi inaugurated the grand temple on February 14. From February 15 to 29, overseas devotees who had registered in advance, along with VIP guests, were granted access to visit the temple.

The temple, constructed using 18 lakh bricks and 1.8 lakh cubic meters of sandstone sourced from Rajasthan, follows the Nagara style of architecture, similar to the recently inaugurated Ram Temple in Ayodhya.
The BAPS Hindu Mandir is currently the largest in the entire Gulf region, with Dubai already housing three other Hindu temples.
The stone temple’s architecture incorporates seven spires, symbolizing the seven Emirates of the UAE, along with carvings of camels and the national bird, the falcon, to represent the host country. Swami Brahmaviharidas, head of international relations for BAPS, had told PTI that, “the seven spires have idols of deities, including Lord Ram, Lord Shiv, Lord Jagannath, Lord Krishna, Lord Swaminarayan (considered a reincarnation of Lord Krishna), Tirupati Balaji and Lord Ayappa. The seven shikhars represent the seven Emirates of the UAE.”

To ensure equal representation to the host country, the temple design includes UAE’s national bird, the falcon, along with animals like elephants, camels, and lions, which hold significant places in Indian mythology. The temple showcases 15 tales from India, including the Ramayana and Mahabharata and stories from various other civilizations such as Mayan, Aztec, Egyptian, Arabic, European, Chinese, and African.
The temple’s outer walls are constructed using sandstone imported from India, while the architectural elements include two ghumats (domes)-the “Dome of Peace” and the “Dome of Harmony”, twelve samrans (dome-like structures), and 402 pillars. On either side of the temple, holy water flows from Ganga and Yamuna, brought all the way from India in large containers.
There is a visitor’s centre, prayer halls, library, classroom, playground, garden and shops also available for the people.
(With inputs from agencies)

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