Families from across the GCC joined an online celebration of the 99th Birthday Celebration of His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj. As fifth spiritual successor of Bhagwan Swaminarayan (1781-1830 CE), Pramukh Swami Maharaj led the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha from 1971 until his return to Akshardham in 2016.
Throughout his lifetime, Swamishri had visited the UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait and Oman multiple times. It was during one such trip in 1997 that he first envisioned a mandir in Abu Dhabi and so sowed the seeds of the upcoming BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Mureikha, Abu Dhabi.
The celebrations on Friday explored Swamishri’s uniquely divine personality, tireless travels to meet and comfort millions of devotees and his long lasting legacy. Devotees from the different nations shared their experiences of his visits and remembered his impact on the different dignitaries, guests and devotees whom Swamishri met. The inspiring incidents from those times were interspersed with video footage which transported the viewers into history and allowed them to witness the events first-hand. Dr. Praful Vaidya, Mr. Ashok Kotecha and Pujya Brahmavihari Swami led the audience on a tour through history which captured the spiritual essence of Pramukh Swami Maharaj but also shared the universal values that Swamishri propounded throughout this vicharan.
After the above presentation and the singing of kirtans and arti, the audience joined in prayer for the construction of the BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi which will become a permanent embodiment of the Swamishri’s values of tolerance, harmony, peace, mutual respect and faith.