The organization’s work has made a lasting impact on many dignitaries, entrepreneurs, and celebrities, some of which are shared below.
“But what I really wanted to do this evening more than anything else was to find a way of congratulating you all for your really remarkable achievement, and it is a great achievement; I realize that having met so many of the volunteers who have put so much of their lives into this project, in creating this very remarkable and special temple, inspired as it is by Pramukh Swami Maharaj with all its breathtaking craftsmanship and its attention to detail."
Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales
“Your Organization is doing great service to mankind by spreading the message of goodness and joy. It is indeed commendable that the Swaminarayan Movement has not limited its work to the Movement alone, but has gone out in society, conducted a door to door crusade against the evils of society to promote peace and harmony.”
His Holiness The Dalai Lama
I have never seen such wonderful work elsewhere. The Sanstha’s relief and social work during such a disaster (Latur earthquake)has provided society with a new life and strength to bear the pain and suffering. This effort has been of great help to us.
Shri Manohar Joshi
Former Chief Minister of Maharashtra
“My visit was a journey in learning and memory that I will always treasure and I send you, and all who helped to make this such a special time, my heartfelt best wishes."
“He is doing great work and may he be supremely successful in achieving his goal of curing and creating peace in this world."
Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh
"It's so inspiring what you have all achieved. I am left speechless. Your words have touched us as much as the building – but without the building, we would never have heard the words. Thank you for your sacrifice."
Richard Branson, Chairman, Virgin Group
Prime Minister of Great Britain, Rt. Hon. John Major, 9 March 1997
The beauty is not just in the building, it is perhaps in the way the building came about, and in the people who voluntarily, for years, dedicated themselves without pay, here to construct this beautiful mandir. I shall go today with a memory that will be unforgettable, of one of the most beautiful mandirs I have ever seen, built in the latter part of the 20th Century, entirely by voluntarily endeavour in the heart of London. If that had been suggested to me some years ago, I would scarcely have credited that it could have been possible, but it has been done, and to those who carried out the work I offer my warmest congratulations."
Prime Minister of Great Britain, Rt. Hon. John Major
H.E. Samson Kisseka, Vice-President of Uganda, 1992
This Movement has done so well and so much for India. You are retaining unity, moral behavior and respecting all religious beliefs. The Swaminarayan devotion, spiritual values and unity of various people – this is a wonderful and commendable job you have done. I have been very impressed to see Akshardham and the service your people are rendering."
HE Samson Kisseka, Vice-President of Uganda
“Your work of instilling moral values in the youth of today is to be thanked. I am deeply impressed."
Richard Gephardt, President of the Democratic Party, USA
Here you'll find in BAPS that sense of moving from working individualism to collectivism, you'll find moving from the battleground to common ground and moving onto a higher, moral ground - this is a great organization!"
Rev. Jesse Jackson
The greatest religion is one which promotes chanting of God's name and doing of noble deeds. I feel that this lesson has been exemplified here. Your work dispels hatred and lights the lamp of love and harmony.
Shri Gyani Zail Singh
Former President of India
If the salvation of India and of the human race is to be achieved it can only be through the great ideals which I find being propagated here. I wish there were more organisations like these.
Economist and Indian Advocate
You are good pious people. If the whole world took you as an example it would be a better place, free of crime, of war and self-destruction. I believe you have valid answers to life's toughest questions. Your organization is doing great work.
Member of Parliament, Canada
After seeing Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in London, Prince Charles opined, "It really is an enormous pleasure and privilege to see you all this evening. I am particularly pleased to have seen something of this beautiful Mandir, something which is I think very special indeed. But what I really wanted to do this evening more than anything else was to find a way of congratulating you all for your really remarkable achievement, and it is a great achievement; I realise that having met so many of the volunteers who have put so much of their lives into this project, in creating this very remarkable and special temple, inspired as it is by Pramukh Swami Maharaj with all its breathtaking craftsmanship and its attention to detail."
HRH Prince of Wales, Prince Charles, London –
28 February 1996.
After her visit at the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in London, Princess Diana commented: "Even before entering the Mandir, it is impossible to feel the enormous love and devotion that has gone into the building of this magnificent house of prayer for the Hindu faith. I was touched by the peacefulness and tranquillity that surrounds one when passing through the doors of the temple, and it is astounding that such beauty was constructed in only three years.
My visit was a journey in learning and memory that I will always treasure and I send you, and all who helped to make this such a special time, my heartfelt best wishes."
The Princess of Wales, Princess Diana, London,
6 June 1997
After his visit to Akshardham in Gandhinagar, Bill Clinton commented:
Thank you -
for welcoming me.
for making me feel at home.
for reaching out to all God's children.
for helping the people hurt by the earthquake.
for working for peace and reconciliation.
Former President of the United States of America,Bill Clinton, Gandhinagar,
5 April 2001
After seeing the Akshardham complex in Gandhinagar, India, he asked that his message be conveyed to HDH Pramukh Swami Maharaj, "Thank him and tell him that I am extremely pleased for this remarkable opportunity of visiting Akshardham. He is doing great work and may he be supremely successful in achieving his goal of curing and creating peace in this world."
HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip,
15 October 1997
During his vist to the Cultural Festival of India in Edison, NJ, George Bush reflected: "The Cultural Festival of India provides a wonderful opportunity for participants to learn more about this fascinating land in South Asia and the unique music, art, craftsmanship, and folklore that Indian Americans have brought to the United States. Featuring a number of conferences that address the challenges before our young people today, this month long festival also reflects its organizers hopes of building a better tomorrow for our children and, indeed, for our Nation. I applaud the many volunteers who have made this event possible, and I congratulate all Indian Americans on what is sure to be a proud and joyous series of events."
Former President of the United States of America, George Bush, Edison, New Jersey,
Richard Branson was flabbergasted during his visit to Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London. He said: "It's so inspiring what you have all achieved. I am left speechless. Your words have touched us as much as the building – but without the building, we would never have heard the words. Thank you for your sacrifice."
Richard Branson, Chairman, Virgin Group, London, UK,
"Compared to Swamiji’s work, my work is even less worthy than shoes. Akshardham in Gandhinagar and the Mandir in London are his 2 miracles of this century. O Swami, you alone are our hope. When we look at you we get energy, find answers and feel at peace."
Prof. Jaroslav Fric, Renowned Multimedia Director, Czech Republic,
During his visit to Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London, Hon. John Major was overwhelmed: "I remember talking to an architect a few years ago who was looking at some of the great buildings in Europe and he said that the tragedy is that the great buildings were built in the past, they are not being built in the present for the future. I am going to suggest he comes here and sees how wrong he was. The beauty is not just in the building, it is perhaps in the way the building came about, and in the people who voluntarily, for years, dedicated themselves without pay, here to construct this beautiful mandir. I shall go today with a memory that will be unforgettable, of one of the most beautiful mandirs I have ever seen, built in the latter part of the 20th Century, entirely by voluntarily endeavour in the heart of London. If that had been suggested to me some years ago, I would scarcely have credited that it could have been possible, but it has been done, and to those who carried out the work I offer my warmest congratulations."
Prime Minister of Great Britain, Rt. Hon. John Major,
9 March 1997
"As a journalist, I'm used to searching people through their eyes. When I encountered Swamiji's eyes, I found them honest, trusting, intelligent, and above all comforting… At 75, most people reflect upon the money and status they have acquired. But today, Swamiji has no money, but the wealth of devotion he has, and the respect he has earned - no one can amass that wealth."
During his visit to the CFI, Edison, NJ, 1991, Ron Patel was impressed by the exhibition pavilion. He said: "What I see Pramukh Swami doing in these exhibits is in a sense reminding India that there was a time of great pride. Now, as the century closes, Pramukh Swami has given India a new reason for pride – rooted in the past but looking much more to the future... The magic of the exhibit is that it points back at you – You say, 'I’ll make my life better. I will be something more important than I was before.' And this is the magic part of the exhibit, something that is very precious. "
The Late Ronald Patel, Managing Editor, “Philadelphia Enquirer”, and Pulitzer Prize winner,
During his visit to the Centenary Celebrations of Yogiji Maharaj in 1992, H.E. Samson Kisseka commented: "I am truly happy and very delighted to have come all the way from Uganda to attend this celebration. This is so important that though I had State duties I thought I must come. And I have found that I have done the right thing in coming here. This Movement has done so well and so much for India. You are retaining unity, moral behavior and respecting all religious beliefs. The Swaminarayan devotion, spiritual values and unity of various people – this is a wonderful and commendable job you have done. I have been very impressed to see Akshardham and the service your people are rendering."
H.E. Samson Kisseka, Vice-President of Uganda,
After seeing Akshardham monument, H.E. D. R. Hasselman commented: "A masterful blend of philosophy and modern technology offer the visitor the opportunity of deeper reflection. I wish this exhibition to contribute to the betterment of the people of India and the world."
H.E. D. R. Hasselman, Consul General of Holland,
1 July 1994
During his visit to Akshardham, H.E. Anatoli M. Drukol commented: "Excellent! Magnificent temple in a splendid park - one of the most beautiful places of modern and ancient India."
H.E. Anatoli M. Drukol, Ambassador of Russia,
23 March 1993
During his visit to Akshardham monument, H.E. Walid Mansoor wrote in the visitors' book: "I have never during my life in a very short time had such a wonderful and huge experience as the one I have had here. Please come and visit Israel."
H.E. Walid Mansoor, Consul General of Israel,
11 November 1997
Impressed on his visit to Akshardham Honorable Lech Walesa prayed, "O Lord! Please guide my generation!"
H.E. Lech Walesa, President of Poland,
During his visit to Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London, in 1999, Jimmy Carter wrote in the visitors' book,
" A truely beautiful and inspirational place!"
Jimmy Carter, Former President of USA,
10 October 1999
During his visit to the Cultural Festival of India, July 1991, Edison, NJ, Richard Gephardt said: "After seeing this festival I wonder if such a festival will be possible on America's doorstep for the next 25 years! I am extremely proud to be here today. Your work of instilling moral values in the youth of today is to be thanked. I am deeply impressed."
Richard Gephardt, President of Democratic Party, USA,
Jack Ladd was tremendously impressed by his visit to the Cultural Festival of India, Edison, NJ. and said: "There are 2,600 volunteers here. Many have given up their careers, their family, and their home life for several months and anyone who can inspire that kind of leadership is not only a wise person, a creative person, but a person who is divinely inspired to lead people."
Jack Ladd, Prominent Lawyer in Midland, Texas,
"Whenever I see Pramukh Swami I am reminded of Yogiji Maharaj. The people of Kenya are fortunate and blessed today to have a beautiful mandir here through the inspiration of Pramukh Swami Maharaj. A mandir can be built when you have a mind and heart. And we can see the synergy of mind and heart in this mandir. The exhibition will play a major role in preserving our culture and traditions here."
Shri Manubhai Madhvani, Industrialist, Mandir Mahotsav, Nairobi,
During his address to an assembley at the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Edison, NJ, Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. said: "When you leave this place you maybe an engineer, a doctor, lawyer, a nurse, a teacher, but here in the temple you'll find common ground that you're somebody, you're God's child and that's enough. The only basis for looking down on someone is that you're going to stop and lift them up. Here you'll find in BAPS that sense of moving from working individualism to collectivism, you'll find moving from the battleground to commonground and moving onto a higher, moral ground - this is a great organization!"
Rev. Jesse Jackson, Sr., Edison, NJ,
24 May 1998
The Hon. Tony Blair was amazed during his visit to the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London, in the presence of HDH Pramukh Swami Maharaj. He said: "I have never seen such a magnificent work of modern architecture as this. It is a magnificent Mandir built thanks to the love and devotion of countless people. It is a place of beauty, a source of inspiration to worship and to reflect. It is a veritable pavilion of peace and of promise. I have been so honoured too, to spend some moments before coming to speak to you with your Holiness. And I say from the bottom of my heart that even in those few moments I could see your inner spirit, your devotion, your humility and your Godliness... I believe that Hinduism is perhaps India's greatest contribution to harmony and peaceful coexistence in this world, and no other country, none, has such a proud tradition of welcoming people from all faiths as India..."
Tony Blair, Leader of Labour Party, UK,
21 June 1996
On 6 September 1998 an assembly was held at Westchester County Center to honor Dr. Subramanian and his team of doctors and specialists. In his address he said: "Lord Swaminarayan descended on us at Lenox Hill Hospital to bless us to be able to help Swamiji in his bypass surgery... Swamiji was an extraordinary person for me to meet. Everyday after the bypass surgery, I would go to visit him. It was like seeing God everyday!"
During the Fuldol Festival at Sarangpur on 2 March 1999, Dr. Subramanian said: "God's greatest gift to me, Lord Swaminarayan's greatest gift to me, was in July last year when I operated on Pramukhji. It was a divine moment when I met Pramukhji for the first time. Two things impressed me when I met Pramukhji and which my father taught me. The first is karma - do your duty. The second is that we are born to give..."
Dr. Subramanian, Renowned By-pass Surgeon, USA
Impressed by the Mandir Mahotsav in Narobi, H.E. Dr. Andra's To'th reflected: "For a long time I have had a desire to visit India. After seeing this mandir the feeling has grown intense. The atmosphere here is very spiritual."
H.E. Dr. Andra's To'th, Ambassador for Hungary in Nairobi, Kenya,
On his visit to the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London, Hon. William Hague noted in the opinion book: "One of the most remarkable places I have ever visited in this country - a truly inspiring example of what can be achieved and the hope and faith that can be given to new generations.
Rt. Hon. William Hague MP, Leader of the Conservative Party, UK,
2 November 1999
During his official visit to the Bicentenary Celebration of Gunatitanand Swami in 1985, H.H. The Dalai Lama said in his address: "Your Organization is doing great service to mankind by spreading the message of goodness and joy. It is indeed commendable that the Swaminarayan Movement has not limited its work to the Movement alone, but has gone out in society, conducted a door to door crusade against the evils of society to promote peace and harmony.
I am deeply impressed by the fact that the youths are so actively involved in the activities of this Movement."
His Holiness The Dalai Lama, Amdavad,
During the Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj in 1992, Pujya Harinarayananand Swami said: "Pramukh Swami has sacrificed his entire life in serving people and in spreading spirituality. I call him the jewel among saints. I use these words not to praise him but I say it as a responsible person of the Sadhu Samaj and as a guru of 80,000 disciples. Today, Pramukh Swami Maharaj, like a shining constellation, is promoting spiritual values in the world. No other guru has spread spiritual values in India and abroad as Pramukh Swami Maharaj."
Secretary, Bharat Sadhu Samaj, 1992
"I am very pleased to see a great soul. Swamiji's greatest contribution lies in his ceaseless efforts to instill our culture and spiritual ideals among the masses residing in our towns and villages."
Pujya Swami Madhvacharya, Head of 'Mansa' temple, Guru Mandal Ashram, Haridwar,
12 Sept. 1987
"Today, is a great auspicious day because Pramukh Swami Maharaj is here with us. This 'Guru Ashram' has become the abode of Vaikuntha. When Hanumanji went to Lanka, a city drowned in material indulgence, jealousy and evil, he set fire to it. Today, Narayan Swami (Pramukh Swami Maharaj) has set fire to the world of lust, indulgence and evil. One whose preachings ring with the note of practice can offer effective service for the welfare of the country, society and religion. Narayan Swami is one who practices what he preaches."
Pujya Shastri Maheshwar Devji of Hanuman Temple, Haridwar, Guru Mandal Ashram, Haridwar,
12 Sept. 1987
"When I entered this hermitage I felt that Pramukh Swami Maharaj did not come on a pilgrim but came to sanctify. In fact, wherever he goes he creates new pilgrim places. Pramukh Swami is a God communion saint. If the people of India and the world adopt the ideals of Pramukh Swami then the entire world will be liberated. I believe that Swamiji is not only the Guru of the Swaminarayan Faith but of the world because he is the form of Narayan (the Master over all things)."
Swami Raghuvirsinh Shastri, of 'Nirmal Sanstha', Guru Mandal Ashram, Haridwar,
12 Sept. 1987
After seeing the Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj, Pujya Chidanand Swamiji expressed: "By the grace of beloved Pramukh Swami, I have been very fortunate to have seen Akshardham. I touched the holy feet of Bhagwan Swaminarayan's idol and circumambulated Akshardham. I saw the museum of holy relics and I was purified. For two and a half hours I saw everything and it seemed as if I had been to heaven. The ideals of the Upanishads, Ramayan and Mahabharat displayed in the halls can elevate man to heaven and make him pure. The experience is unforgettable. Akshardham is a testimony to the work perfection and capabilities of saints. And such perfection can only be possible through renunciation and devotion. "
Pujya Chidanand Swamiji, President, The Divine Life Society, Rishikesh,
22 November 1992
During his visit to Akshardham in 1992 Mahant Avaidyanthji said: "I am certain that whoever visits this newly created Akshardham will take fresh inspiration from it. Pramukh Swami Maharaj has inspired this complex for the good of society, to give direction to people. It is not merely built to spread the message of the religious movement. This is what I feel in the short time that I have been here. I have also seen here that children are given inspiration to become good moral citizens that will enrich our society of tomorrow. It can be said that Akshardham fulfills the requirements for the multiple advancement of our society. At the center of this noble activity is Pramukh Swami Maharaj. I commend his spirit of enthusiasm, his effort and his vision in creating this monumental project. This will definitely help to transform our society for the better."
Mahant Avaidyanathji, Gorakshapithadhish, Gorakhpur,
"A single visit to Akshardham is worth more than all the teachings and all the knowledge that one would get from countless life-molding books. Upto now we beheld the famous Jain temples of Abu for their matchless beauty, but Akshardham is in no way inferior. This is the first time that such a project has been attempted in our day and age. Only Pramukh Swami Maharaj is capable of accomplishing such a feat. Akshardham is now the 8th wonder of the world - the other 7 wonders pale into insignificance in front of this Monument . The other wonders are rich in architectural beauty but they do not offer life-inspiring messages as Akshardham does. The art and beauty in Akshardham is unique and so are the lively messages that it has to offer."
The Late Acharya Shushilmuniji, President,
Int. Mahavir Jain Mission, November 1992
"It is said in the Ramcharitmanas that as one enters the precincts of Rishi Kakbhushandi's ashram, one experiences divine peace. A similar feeling is experienced as one enters the grounds of Akshardham. A feeling of blissful joy is experienced here. Having seen the beautiful structure of Akshardham, I feel that the rich art of India and its glorious architectural tradition is still alive and preserved in its entirety. In terms of sheer beauty, Akshardham is in a league of its own. No other temple can match its beauty. The exhibition here is an inspiration to all. It will inspire goodness in society and promise the all-round progress of our nation. Just as one feels peace and joy in the closeness of God's company and abode, likewise, one enjoys a similar blissful state here in Akshardham. Many people get divine inspiration here, an experience of God's love and care. I think Akshardham is a unique and matchless pilgrim place of our country which offers sublime peace to everyone."
Pujya Mahant Nrityagopaldasji,
Badi Chhavani, Ayodhya, November 1992
After his visit to Akshardham, Pujya Chinna Zeer Swami said: "I feel it is one of the great wonders of the world. We feel that this is the real place that we have to see. Simply because here we see the scientific wonders based on spiritual wonders and this is what today's world is in need of. Akshardham is giving good medicine in a beautifully capsulized form to society. Here, religion is put in a colorful scientific capsule and presented to society."
Pujya Chinna Zeer Swamiji,
Head of Ramanujacharya Gaadi, Andhra Pradesh, November 1992
"In our modern times Akshardham is an amazing religious place. For centuries people will derive inspiration from this holy place. I have faith that this architectural gift from Pramukh Swami Maharaj will become more historic than the Taj Mahal."
President, Samanvay Trust, Haridwar, November 1992
"After visiting Akshardham, I feel that I have visited the eighth wonder of the world. It is not merely a monument, a pilgrimage or a temple, it is a classic mirror of our holy Indian Culture. 'NA KSHARATI ITI AKSHAR' - one which is indestructible is called 'Akshar'. Hence, immortal Akshardham endows us with self-realization and God-realization. Man has always been a lover of art and beauty. Akshardham attracts thousands of visitors from India and abroad by its beauty and art. Each and every department of it is so beautiful that one cannot decide which can be called the best. His Holiness Pramukh Swamiji and his disciples have given their valuable contribution for this great Dham. But I can say with confidence that one who once visits Akshardham, takes its golden memories with him forever."
Eminent Jain Renunciate, 6 June 1997
"It was an enriching experience, depicting noble truths and values in the context of religion, culture, art and architecture. May all those who visit Akshardham continue their search for the infinite, the pure and the Truth eternal in their hearts, in their lives and in the whole universe. Thanks to the services of the guide whose pleasant manner, knowledge, patient and clear explanations are greatly appreciated."
Sister Vincent A.C.,
Eminent Christian Nun, 6 May 1997
During her visit to the Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj, Pujya Goswami Indira Betiji expressed: "I am pleased to feel the woman power here. United, women too can change the face of the world. I am especially struck by the earnestness to please the guru."
Pujya Goswami Indira Betiji,
Religious Leader, 1992
After seeing the spiritual township celebrating the Bicentenary of Gunatitanand Swami at Amdavad in 1985, Pujya Swami Atmanand lauded the inspirer: "Oh! What a humble man. What a divine man. I have yet to see such people in abundance. One of the very rare souls that our country has. Pramukh Swami is very dedicated, very spiritually high."
The Late Pujya Swami Atmanand,
Head of Ramkrishna Mission, Raipur, October 1985
"In India there are many sadhus, many spiritual heads. They all are worshipful. But the name of Pramukh Swami sits at the top. He has, in the capital of England - a king in the age of empires, created a Himalaya of Hinduism - a Mandir which has overwhelmed everyone."
Pujya Acharya Dharmendraji,
Panchkhand Pithadhishwar, Profound propagator of Hinduism, Amrut Mahotsav, Mumbai, 1995
"A true sadhu is one in whom there is a confluence of virtues like gnan, bhakti and selfless service. We have an ideal example before us - Pramukh Swami Maharaj. In this beautiful creation of the mandir we see the stupendous efforts of Swamiji and his devotees. It reflects the guru bhakti of the devotees. This mandir is not only for Indians but also for the progress and elevation of the local people. There is no doubt it will open the horizons of life and inspire progress in the country."
H.H. Swamishri Tejomayanandji,
President, Chinmaya Mission, Nairobi, August 1999
During his visit at the Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj, Dr. Kurien expressed: "I am a Christian follower but I am happy that I have been invited here and honored. This shows that there is no distinction between religions in this organization. Religion is that which brings man closer to man... The sacrifice and organizing capacity here is exceptional. I am full of hope that the people of Gujarat will learn something from this festival."
Dr. Verghese Kurien,
Chairperson, National Dairy Development Board, Gandhinagar, November 1992
Ramkrishna Bajaj was impressed by his visit to the Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj. In an assembly he said: "The organization is splendid and beyond words. It has been done with great insight and intelligence and is very captivating. Without devotion such mammoth organization is not possible. Even the government cannot do this. You are reviving our traditions. Here, I find discipline and dedication."
Ramkrishna Bajaj, Leading Industrialist,
Gandhinagar, November 1992
During the inauguration of Swaminarayan Nagar in Samudraal, a town reconstructed by the Sanstha after the earthquake in Latur, the Chief Minister of Maharashtra lauded the Sanstha's services. He said: "I have never seen such wonderful work elsewhere. The Sanstha’s relief and social work during such a disaster (Latur earthquake 1993) has provided society with a new life and strength to bear the pain and suffering. This effort has been of great help to us."
The Chief Minister of Maharashtra,
Shri Manohar Joshi, 31 March 1995
H.E. Venkataraman was all praises for the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London, during his visit in 1995: "I have seen all the mandirs of India and of the world. In fact, I have built a few myself. But I have never seen a mandir like this. It can’t be the work of man. It has to be the work of God."
President of India, 1995
Shree Bhaironsinh Shekhawat praised the Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London, saying: "Out of the power of his wish, Swamiji has built a magnificient mandir in London and has obliged us with this great benevolent act of erecting this monument of Indian Culture. Today, hundreds of educated sadhus, inspired by the benevolent ideals of Swamiji are moving in society to spread the message of Indian Culture. Whenever I see such dedicated volunteers, I am humbled."
Chief Minister, Indian state of Rajasthan, 1996
"The work of the sadhus and volunteers is truly praiseworthy. Our Pramukh Swamiji has inspired them. This in itself is strength for us, because the strength of India originates from the actions of our sages and voice of our saints."
Prime Minister, India, 1996
The Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj in Gandhinagar, 1992, impressed Shri Jagatnarayan Kapoor. During his visit he commented: "Here, I find the modern application of science and technology. The 17,000 volunteers are actively serving from morning till night. Our world needs such volunteers. I hope the lamp you have kindled will keep giving light to the whole world."
President, Indian Science Academy, 1992
During her visit to the Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj in Gandhinagar, 1992, Mrinalini Sarabhai shared her feelings: "What an exhilarating, divine and devotional atmosphere of love and joy where humanity has gathered in a wonderous song of love. And through it the deeply moving smile of Yogiji Maharaj blessing us all."
Esteemed Danseuse, 1992
"Under the guidance of His Divine Holiness Shri Pramukh Swami, this Sanstha is pursuing excellence in its efforts to impart spiritual values to people, particularly young people."
Mr. R. Chidambaram,
Director, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, 1993
During his visit to the Bicentenary Celebration of Gunatitanand Swami in 1985, Nani Palkhivala said: "What impresses me most is your total tolerance, how you regard all religions as one, how you regard service to mankind, the brotherhood of man, in other words, you stand for very high ideals. And I think if the salvation of India and of the human race is to be achieved it can only be through the great ideals which I find being propagated here."
Mr. Nani Palkhivala,
Eminent Economist & Advocate of India, November 1985
Dignitaries at Akshardham Monument, Gandhinagar, Gujarat
During his visit to the Bicentenary Celebration of Gunatitanand Swami in 1985, the then President Giani Zail Singh opined: "It is the gestures, activities, life, sacrifices, spirit of renunciation and benevolent deeds of great saints and sages that made a great nation out of our country. The Swaminarayan Movement is one such Faith that has been so serving the nation. Many saints and sages have descended on this earth and enshrined the highest ideals of life. Who has preserved those values? It is saints like Pramukh Swami who have imbibed them. By virtue of their lives and deeds, they possess a spiritual appeal; because of which people listen to them and get inspired to live by those values. The Government needs such noble saints; however, they do not need the Government. And had I not visited Akshardham, I would have missed a lot in my life."
The former President of India,
Shri Giani Zail Singh, 1985
During His visit to Akshardham Monument, Gandhinagar, the PM opined: "A pleasant surprise! The effort of filling the whole ocean into a pot is truly commendable. The concept is attractive! The noblest experience of leaving a long-lasting impact through the combination of light and sound. A project worthy of emulation, which transmits the eternal message of religion right down to the common man. Congratulations!"
Hon. Atal Behari Vajpayee,
Prime Minister of India, 16 May 1993
"Akshardham is timeless, where people can learn about the eternal quest, values, the soul, and about man and his duties. It is not just a temple, it is a place for a cultural quest, and through this it is a quest of the self. It is a place where people will not be sitting in one place only but they can do research, see the Multimedia show, the museums and finally I think after they have gone round they would go to the temple where the spirit is. This is probably one of the rare temples built in contemporary times where one can expect thousands of people to come and yet it will not look crowded. I think this is important. It is an integration of a contemporary sect or philosophy and its manifestation in the form of a temple."
Shri B.V. Doshi, Eminent Architect,
21 November 1992
"To be very honest I don't have any words to describe my feelings of respect for Akshardham. I have seen the whole Akshardham complex. It has been built very beautifully. I think it is a creation of a great spiritual power. The spiritual power that is here will be responsible for the progress of our future India. I am very impressed with Akshardham. Indian culture has been presented here at its best. Whoever comes here will take with him a power and life's noble values that will be of great benefit to him in future."
Dr. Dinesh Vyas,
Eminent Advocate & Economist, 16 November 1992
"A visit to this great house of Devotion and Spirituality is like a pilgrimage to one of India's biggest shrines. Akshardham is a place of virtue, devotion and knowledge. Going through the place makes me feel inspired - the glory of India's past and the efforts of present sages and the hope of a better world to follow, swells the heart with joy and confidence. India's sanskruti and culture, the presence of godliness all around makes one feel proud of being an Indian. In building Akshardham, Swamiji has made India's spiritual life alive. Here man stands between the visible and the non-visible and through the teaching of the great Swamiji it becomes possible for ordinary men to experience the Almighty Lord of the world, the maker of this universe. May Swamiji's message of love, harmony and devotion spread and make this world a better place."
H.E. Shri Abid Hussain,
Former Indian Ambassador to USA, November 1992
After seeing Akshardham the renowned Santoor artiste commented: "A rare Monument which is created out of total devotion, dedication and selfless service."
Pundit Shivkumar Sharma,
Eminent Santoor Artiste, 8 November 1992
After seeing Akshardham Shri R. K. Laxman noted: "Excellent, elevating experience!"
Shri R. K. Laxman,
Internationally acclaimed cartoonist, 17 August 1997
"I have seen many exhibitions and museums in many parts of the world. But I can say with all honesty that I have not seen a presentation of Indian values and ideals so beautiful and effective as here in Akshardham. It is so beautiful that it is simply beyond the ken of imagination. The ancient Indian belief of the sages is portrayed here through the presentation of the fundamental principles of all the religions of the world. Our concept of 'The world as one family' is really effective.
I believe that whoever comes here will take a deep and lasting impression of spirituality with him. I am sure that not only Indians will yearn to visit Akshardham but foreigners will also be attracted to it."
Shri L.K. Advani,
President, Bhartiya Janta Party, November 1992
"Akshardham is unique and overwhelming in its appeal. I have never seen a complex so beautiful, so thought-provoking and so well-managed."
Shri Geet Sethi, World Billiards Champion, November 1992
During his visit to the Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj he was impressed by the organization of the festival. He said: "I am very impressed with the responsibility and organizational capability of all the boys. Their dedication and enthusiasm is exemplary."
Shri Geet Sethi,
World Billiards Champion, November 1992
After seeing the spiritual township at the Centenary Celebration of Yogiji Maharaj, Shri B.J. Diwan commented: "Mind boggling, planning and organization have been harnessed to the cause of religion and moral as well as spiritual advancement. Under the able leadership of revered Pramukh Swami Mahsaraj, people of all ages and all walks of life, have rendered these Celebration a major event in the life of everyone."
Shri B.J. Diwan,
Rtd. Chief Justice, High Court of Gujarat, November 1992
"The simplicity and saintliness of Pramukh Swami touches deep. He never allows his greatness to ride upon his shoulders and lives naturally like one of us. His actions touch the heart."
Dr. K.P. Narsimharao,
President, Medical Council of India