Through the divine grace and blessings of Bhagwan Swaminarayan and Guruhari Pramukh Swami Maharaj the Shilanyas Mahotsav for the new purpose-built BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Thika, Kenya, was held on Sunday 18 July 2010.
Senior devotees from Thika and other Kenyan centres participated in the Vedic Mahapuja which was held at the Mandir site in the presence of Bhaktavatsal Swami and sadhus from Nairobi. Everyone then took part in the traditional Shilanyas Vidhi, where guests and attendees placed a stone into the foundation of the Mandir. All felt honoured to have been part of such a historic milestone.
The Mahotsav assembly then took place at Oshwal Centre, Thika, which was attended by over 900 invited guests and devotees. A senior devotee of Thika briefly talked about the history of Satsang in Thika. Thereafter, Shri Mahendrabhai Patel (Barrister) very concisely explained the importance of this festival and the need for mandirs. This was followed by succinct but inspiring speeches from Rajeshwar Swami and Bhatkavatsal Swami enlightening all present. Shri Harshadbhai Rana also explained how Pramukh Swami Maharaj in Delhi, India, performed pujan of the first ‘shila’ (stone) to be placed in the foundation.
All present were inspired with the belief that such mandirs will protect and uphold the timeless traditions of Hinduism and infuse future generations with moral values and noble virtues.