A satisfactory completion of the crematorium project was encouraging and it was suggested we should consider provision of a Chijgam Mandir.
On 19 July 1992 at our AGM in Coventry, it was reported that a mandir is planned to be built on a site Near Ramtalav and receipt books were being sent overseas looking for funds required.
Haribhai on his visit to India was also given receipt books. It was reported that not all Gamvasi were happy with the proposed site. It was decided that we should obtain more information from Gam Sammittee.
Dayubhai our secretary had written to the Gam Sammittee who had replied which was read out to the meeting. It emerged that there would be two mandirs, which was not considered to be in the interest of the unity of the Gam and it was generally agreed that the project should be co-ordinated by the Gam Sammittee. Dayubhai was instructed to write to both the parties requesting them to select a site easily accessible to the whole GAM.
This was finally agreed to be near Unkakaka’s Talavadi (where the Mandir now stands).
The building contract was signed with Shree Kishorbhai Lalji Chetaliya at an estimated cost of Rs. 6.1 Lakh. This was to be funded jointly by Chijgamvasi resident in the UK, Canada and Gamvasi in India.
In 1993 at our AGM in Coventry a full report of Mandir project was presented to the meeting. It was suggested that we should hold a special meeting and decide on collection of donation for the Mandir project, which was organised In Leicester on 12 December 1993. The meeting agreed that a donation of at least £200 be given by each member. A total donation of £ 5,313 was collected for this project.
Dayubhai who was previledged to perform the ceremony of laying the foundation stone, in 1994 which coincided with his visit to India was very much impressed with the part the temple building was playing in the life of chijgamvasi.
The Mandir was due to be completed in this year and the target date was Ramnavmi in April 1995.
The Mandir was completed and Pranprtistha went ahead as planned on 19th April 1995. On this occasion we were well represented as Babubhai and Sushilaben, Dahyabhai and Indiraben, Dayubhai and Hansaben, attended and took part in the ceremony of Pranpratistha. Reporting on this auspicious occasion Dayubhai quoted “it was a day, which will be remembered by all who were present on the day for the rest of their lives”.
The whole gam was transformed into a wave of happy faces. The procession through the village was a joy to watch. There were young boys and girls dancing to the tune of band and women and girls playing garba often joined by boys and men where open space came along the way. What a garba! Some times numbering as many as 500, all forming a BIG circle, which was a beautiful sight to watch. With chanting of mantras for three days and Havans made the whole atmosphere very pure and soothing to the mind. It was also a day when all associated with Gam paid a visit, all the teachers past and present came bringing back good old memories. To sum up Dayubhai said, “I have never seen so many happy faces working in harmony as a one BIG family. It was middle of April a least expected time for rain in our part of Gujarat but as the Shivling was lifted for positioning in its designated place in the Mandir, the heavens opened up and as soon as the brief ceremony was over, it stopped raining … a miracle !
It was estimated approximately 3000 people visited the gam of the opening ceremony of the Mandir.
Our new poojari Shree Arvindbhai was appointed and every one is very satisfied with the dignified way in which he conducts services and looks after spiritual needs of Gamvasi.
Appeal was made for donations for provision of streetlights leading to the Mandir in 1997, which was well received and was completed by Babubhai on his visit to India.
Click here to read the report for the Mandir’s 8th Anniversary
Click here to see Mandir’s 16th anniversary invite letter