After a 17-year long wait, ISKCON is now on track towards building its first temple in the historic town of Kurukshetra. On 29th August, on the eve of Balarama Jayanti, 2,000 devotees from various Indian cities assembled at the site of the future temple to celebrate the festival of Shilanayasa.
ISKCON’s founder-acharya Srila Prabhupada had a keen desire that a temple of Lord Krishna and his devotee Arjuna come up in the holy land of Kurukshetra where the message of Bhagavad Gita was spoken 5,000 years ago.
The future temple would be shaped as a chariot and would cover an area of 6 acres. Among other functions, the temple would house facilities for Bhagavad Gita studies, food distribution center, and goshala for cow protection.
Presiding over the festival was the ISKCON’s Governing Body Member, Gopal Krishna Goswami, along with other senior members of ISKCON India, such as Basu Ghosh Das and Mahaman Das, local municipal legislature Subhash Sudha and others.
The Governor of Haryana and Punjab, Mr. Kaptan Singh Solanki, the chief guest for the festival installed the deity of Lord Ananta at the very spot which would in future be housing the sanctum sanctorum, later addressed the assembled devotees, donors and the general public:
“Today ISKCON is providing the whole world the very same message for human welfare; that which Lord Krishna provided Arjuna in the form of the Gita. We are going to this University. This Institution has established Universities, translated the Gita in 88 languages across the whole world and distributed it among 50 crore people! India is known for this great message. No government; or the United Nations despite being present at this stature across the world could achieve the task of bringing in peace in the whole world, harmony, Vaishnavism, the welfare of mankind. Today, the whole world is ablaze in terrorism, whether it’s inside the house or outside; quarrels are so widespread that even the government has not been able to rectify this. The task of ringing in peace is being performed by this institution- ISKCON. This message is for the welfare of the whole world. This message has been given by God Himself.”
Promising his full support along with his staff’s for the construction of the Krishna-Arjun temple Mr. Solanki said:
[ haryana ] [ kurukshetra ] [ punjab ]
“The Kurukshetra Development Board doesn’t want to stop this - ISKCON will receive our complete cooperation to establish this task. You will receive the complete cooperation from the people’s representative here. The people of Kurukshetra will provide support. The Haryana Government will support this, and if there is any difficulty or shortcomings, the doors of the Chairman of the Kurukshetra Development Board (the Governor himself) are open for you. Do approach us, you will receive all kinds of support.”