Abu Dhabi’s first Hindu stone temple opens for public

PTI, Mar 2, 2024, 9:04 AM IST

Abu Dhabi: The UAE’s first Hindu stone temple, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 14, was opened to the general public on Friday.

The temple was built by the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) on a 27-acre site in Abu Mureikhah, near Al Rahba off the Dubai-Abu Dhabi Sheikh Zayed Highway at a cost of around Rs 700 crore.

The land for the temple was donated by the UAE government.

A grand ceremony attended by almost 5,000 people marked the inauguration of the architectural marvel by Modi on February 14. Overseas devotees were allowed to visit between February 15 and 29.

“The wait is over! #AbuDhabiMandir is now open for all visitors and worshipers,” a post on X handle by the BAPS Hindu Mandir handle (@AbuDhabiMandir) said along with a little over one-minute video of the stunning place of worship.

It also mentioned that the temple would be open from 9 am to 8 pm on all days except Monday when it would be closed for visitors.

The temple website (https://www.mandir.ae/) gave detailed guidelines for visitors, including what type of clothing is preferred and what is banned, rules for photography etc.

These guidelines are necessary to be followed “to preserve the tranquil ambience and ensure the orderly management of our premises,” the temple authorities said.

Constructed using sandstone and marble, the temple has been made in the Nagara style of architecture as per the ancient style of construction and creation mentioned in the Shilpa and Sthapatya Shastras, the Hindu scriptures which describe the science of temple design and construction.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has at least 3.5 million Indians who are part of the Indian workforce in the Gulf.

The BAPS Hindu Mandir in Abu Dhabi is the largest in the Gulf region. The UAE has three other Hindu temples in Dubai.

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