With blue skies above and an electric atmosphere surrounding him, Sadguru Pujya Kothari Swami (Pujya Bhaktipriya Swami) performed the Vedic ceremony for the padmashila on August 18, 2012. The installation ceremony began with devotees performing mahapuja at the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir and Cultural Center in Chino Hills, California.
Upon completion of the mahapuja, Pujya Kothari Swami and Pujya Yagnavallabh Swami, along with other swamis and devotees, arrived in the construction zone of the Mandir to perform the final vidhi on the intricately carved marble keystone. P. Kothari Swami placed Harikrishna Maharaj on the keystone and completed the ceremony with great joy.
Under the watchful eyes of senior engineers, the keystone was carefully lifted in the air by crane and guided to the top of the Mandir. Weighing approximately 4.5 tons, the keystone is the final piece of the central dome of the Mandir.
At approximately 4:30 P.M., the keystone was lowered into the Mandir and aligned into place for final placement. This historical moment was captured by a video-camera placed directly underneath the central dome, which allowed for devotees seated in the assembly hall to witness the placement from unique perspective.
The completion of the central dome of the Chino Hills Mandir signifies the beginning of the end. In just four months, the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Chino Hills will be completed and this joyous occasion will be celebrated with a four-day Mandir Mahotsav from December 20, 2012 to December 23, 2012.