On 25 March 2017, Param Pujya Mahant Swami Maharaj performed the Shilanyas Ceremony of the haveli at the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir in Johannesburg. Since then, the construction work has progressed steadily.
On Saturday, 29 May 2021, Param Pujya Mahant Swami Maharaj initiated the next phase of the project by blessing the foundation shilas (stones) for the shikharbaddha mandir. In Nenpur, Gujarat, at 11 a.m. IST (7.30 a.m. in South Africa), the initial Vedic mahapuja rituals of the stones were performed by Atmaswarup Swami. Thereafter, Swamishri performed the concluding Vedic mahapuja rituals and performed pujan of the stones, yantras and construction instruments.
Pujan packs had been sent to 450 homes throughout Southern Africa for satsangis and members of the community to join in this momentous occasion. Each pack contained the required puja materials as well as two small shila bricks, replicas of the shilas blessed by Swamishri. The first, a plastic replica, will remain at each home as a memento of the occasion, while the second, a wooden replica, which each family will place into the actual mandir foundation on the mandir site.
This entire shila pujan ceremony was streamed live globally and was attended by over 5,000 devotees and well-wishers. Swamishri was honored by the senior devotees of South Africa with a special garland made of the shila replicas. Swamishri blessed all the devotees and also wrote a special letter after the ceremony to bless the devotees for the historic project.