Modi inaugurates redeveloped temple of Shree Kalika Mata at Pavagadh Hill in Gujarat
Vadodara, June 18, 2022
Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated on Saturday the redeveloped temple of Shree Kalika Mata at Pavagadh Hill near Vadodara in Gujarat, one of the oldest temples in the area and which attracts pilgrims in large numbers.
The redevelopment of the temple has been done in two phases. The inauguration of the first phase of redevelopment was done by the Prime Minister earlier this year in April. The foundation stone of the redevelopment of the second phase, which was inaugurated today, was laid by the Prime Minister in 2017. This includes expansion of the temple base and "parisar" at three levels, and the installation of amenities like street lights, CCTV system, and so on.
Modi expressed his gratitude for his good fortune of being at the temple. He underlined the importance of the moment today when after five centuries and 75 years after independence, the "dhwaja" or sacred flag was hoisted on the temple.
“Today, after centuries, the flag is once again hoisted on the top of the Pavagadh temple. This ‘Shikhar Dhwaj’ flag is not only a symbol of our faith and spirituality but this flag is also a symbol of the fact that centuries change, eras change, but the faith remains eternal.”
He said that the redevelopment right before the upcoming "Gupt Navratri" was an indication that "Shakti" never dims or disappears.
Referring to Ram Temple in Ayodhya, Kashi Vishvanath Dham and Kedar Dham, the Prime Minister said, “Today the spiritual and cultural glory of India is being restored. Today New India is proudly living its ancient identity along with its modern aspirations.”
"Alongwith centres of faith new possibilities of our progress are emerging and this grand temple at Pavagadh is part of that journey," he said.
He said that this temple also symbolized Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas and Sabka Prayas.
Modi recalled how Swami Vivekananda devoted himself to public service after getting Maa Kali’s briefings. He said that today he asked the goddess to give him strength to serve the people.
He prayed “Mother, bless me so that I continue to serve the people of the country as a servant of the people with more energy, sacrifice and dedication. Whatever strength I have, whatever virtues I have in my life, I should continue to dedicate it for the welfare of the mothers and sisters of the country.”
In the context of Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav (75th Year of Independence celebrations), the Prime Minister said that Gujarat has made sterling contributions in the freedom struggle as well as in the development journey of the nation. Garvi Gujarat is synonymous with pride and glory of India, he said.
He said that in the glorious tradition of the Somnath temple; Panchmahal and Pavagadh have kept working for the pride in the nation's heritage. He said that today, Maa Kali has blessed her devotees with the greatest gift by completing the redevelopment and hoisting the Dhwaja. In the restoration, the ancient essence of the temple was not touched, he said.
Modi also noted the ease of access to the temple. “Earlier the journey to Pavagadh was so difficult that people used to say that at least once in life the mother should have darshan. Today, the increasing facilities here have made difficult darshan accessible,” he said.
He asked the devotees to maintain discipline. “There is spirituality in Pavagadh, there is also history, nature, art and culture. Here on one side is the Shaktipeeth of Maa Mahakali, and on the other side there is also a heritage Jain temple. That is, Pavagadh has in a way been a centre of universal harmony with the historical diversity of India," he said.
Referring to the various temples of Mata, the Prime Minister noted that Gujarat has a security ring of Mata’s blessings.
The Prime Minister noted that, with development of places of faith, new opportunities emerge for the region as tourism, employment and awareness about the art and craft of the region increases. Recalling that Panchmahal being the land of legendary music maestro Baiju Bawara, the Prime Minister said that wherever heritage and culture gets strength, art and talent too flourish.
The Prime Minister remembered that it was from Champaner, near Pavagadh, that the "Jyotigram" scheme was launched in 2006 by the Gujarat Government, when he was Chief Minister of the state, to ensure 24-hour power supply to rural areas and to farmers.