Indian Parliament Speaker Om Birla and a 17-member delegation paid a visit to the under-construction BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi.
Federal National Council member Ayesha Mohammed Al Mulla accompanied the group, who were received and greeted in a traditional way by religious leader Pujya Brahmavihari Swami.
Birla is on a first-ever official visit by the Speaker of the Lower House of the Parliament to the UAE. He said the temple is an ideal example of global harmony.
“BAPS Hindu Mandir is more than a temple. It is truly an oasis of spirituality, beauty and universality. For hundreds of years the magnanimity and the integrity of the rulers of UAE and the leaders of India shall be celebrated by generations to come. I congratulate Pramukh Swami, BAPS saints, volunteers and workers involved in this selfless saga of harmony. It is a matter of great pride for India and Indians all over the world.”
Apart from an overview of the construction work, Brahmavihari Swami also gave a vision of what to expect once the temple is completed.
Sushil Kumar Modi, a member of the Upper House of the Indian Parliament, said: “Among all the temples across the globe this temple is iconic and historic and marks its position in a different league.”
The delegation participated in a prayer session and placed a brick within the construction site.
Brahmavihari Swami added that the purpose of the traditional temple is unification of minds and hearts.
“BAPS Hindu Mandir has brought not just India and the UAE closer together but brought countries, cultures, communities, and religions closer together. We thank the leaders of both the UAE and India for their support and encouragement in creating this spiritual oasis for global harmony.”
Separately, the temple has curated an on-site exhibition for all visitors every Sunday. The exhibition depicts how the temple will create, promote, and sustain harmony in line with the UAE’s vision of tolerance.
All visitors will have the opportunity to take part in creating history by sponsoring a brick. Each donor’s receipt can be used to visit the site and physically place a brick. Details can be found at https://www.mandir.ae/bricks/
The UAE’s first traditional stone Hindu temple is expected to be completed in 2023.