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In 1907, Brahmaswarup Shastriji Maharaj established the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar-Purushottam Sanstha by consecrating a grand mandir in the small village of Bochasan.
However, as Shastriji Maharaj continued to travel tirelessly to promote the Akshar-Purushottam upasana revealed by Bhagwan Swaminarayan, he made Ahmedabad his primary base from where he coordinated the Sanstha’s activities. From the 1910s, Shastriji Maharaj visited Ahmedabad frequently staying at the homes of local devotees. These included: Bhavanbhai Solanki, Khengarjibhai Chauhan, Mansukhbhai Mistry, Arjunbhai Chavda, Vasantray Pandya and Champaklal Banker. But, the home in Ambli Vali Pol of Babubhai Somchandbhai Kothari, of the Leuva Patidar community, was Shastriji Maharaj’s mainstay.
During this period, the home in Ambli Vali Pol of Rukhmanibai, the childless widow of Jethabhai Nathubhai Patel, was also vacant. Before she passed away in 1920, she had prepared a will on 7 May 1920, expressing her wish that her home be used as a mandir. Her affairs were being handled by Babubhai and Amrutlal Bahechardas. Hence, after her demise, Shastriji Maharaj frequently stayed in this house, inspiring and enlightening devotees with his discourses. This arrangement continued for many years, and on 21 May 1940, Amrutlal Bahechardas, as the executor of Rukhmanibai’s will, formally transferred the deeds of the house to the Sanstha. Subsequently, Shastriji Maharaj consecrated a hari mandir there.
This house had already served as Shastriji Maharaj’s base for several decades and had witnessed many divine and historic occasions. In the ensuing years, it continued as the venue for numerous inspiring moments. Today, this sacred pilgrim place, now known as Yagnapurush Smruti Mandir, continues to be an inspiring haven that reflects the core values and historic roots of BAPS. It is a window into the past that inspires and guides us to progress in the future.
Ambli Vali Pol is a haven where:
  • the pious footprints of four Gunatit gurus – Shastriji Maharaj, Yogiji Maharaj, Pramukh Swami Maharaj and Mahant Swami Maharaj – have sanctified the terrain.
  • numerous festivals have been celebrated and discourses have been held.
  • the true Akshar-Purushottam upasana was openly revealed to Shri Gulzarilal Nanda, twice acting prime minister of India, and other stalwarts.
  • Shastriji Maharaj ordained 18-year-old Shantilal into the parshad order.
  • Shastriji Maharaj appointed 28-year-old Narayanswarupdasji as president (pramukh) of BAPS, on 21 May 1950 (Jeth sud 4, V.S. 2006) at 5.00 p.m., and thus gave the Sanstha ‘Pramukh Swami’.
  • Pramukh Swami pledged to guru Shastriji Maharaj that he will loyally serve the Sanstha till his last breath.
  • after his appointment as president, Pramukh Swami washed the dishes and utensils used by the devotees, setting an example of servant leadership.
  • numerous landmark decisions were taken by Shastriji Maharaj.
  • Shastriji Maharaj launched the Sanstha’s acclaimed monthly magazine Swaminarayan Prakash, to strengthen the spiritual knowledge and understanding of devotees.
  • devotees of Ahmedabad donated funds to Shastriji Maharaj to build the mandir in Gondal.
  • Shastriji Maharaj inspired Prof. Jethalal Swaminarayan and others to write shastras, poems and other texts that elucidate the Akshar-Purushottam upasana.
  • Shastriji Maharaj and Yogiji Maharaj established the first Akshar-Purushottam Yuvak Mandal.
  • yuvaks and devotees devoutly sang bhajans before Shastriji Maharaj.
  • Shastriji Maharaj graced many with the divine experience of samadhi and strengthened their faith in Bhagwan Swaminarayan.
  • Shastriji Maharaj rested after a heart attack and revealed the glory of Yogiji Maharaj and Pramukh Swami Maharaj.
  • Shastriji Maharaj stayed from 6 May to 4 September 1950 to coordinate plans for the mandir in Shahibaug.
  • Pramukh Swami Maharaj had blessed, “The wishes of whoever drapes a chadar here will be fulfilled. The darshan of the sixty-eight holy places and all sacred rivers is included here.”
  • Pramukh Swami Maharaj affectionately cooked and served rotlis to the young Vinubhai (Mahant Swami Maharaj).

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