Thursday, March 7, 2013

ISKCON temple to have elements of South Indian architecture

The proposed ISKCON temple site in Poigai Mottur,
near Vellore.Photo: D.Gopalakrishnan
The Hindu: The Lord Krishna temple to be built by the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) in Vellore would be based on South Indian temple architecture, said Priya Govinda Das, spiritual mentor of ISKCON, Vellore.
Talking to The Hindu on Wednesday at Hare Krishna Land, a seven-acre stretch acquired by ISKCON in Poigai Mottur village in Vellore taluk, 10 km from Vellore city and about five km off the Chennai-Bangalore National Highway, Mr. Das said that ISKCON has planned to build a traditional stone temple for Lord Krishna that would last for more than 1,000 years. “We want to do some serious research on the type of materials to be used to build the temple before starting the work. It would take another 10 years for the temple to be ready”, he said.
At present, the Hare Krishna Land has a couple of buildings which houses a temporary temple, kitchen, Prasadam hall and a Brahmacharis’ (celibates) rest house. A new four-storeyed guest house would be built at the spot to accommodate the devotees who visit the temple. The proposed guest house would have about 60 rooms, said Mr. Das.
A group of 10 ISKCON devotees from the U.S. visited the ISKCON centre here on Wednesday, as part of their pilgrimage to India. The devotees had already visited Tirupathi, Ahobilam, Srirangam and Udipi. From here, they left for Salem, after which they would be visiting other pilgrim centres in the country.
The Bhagawad Gita philosophy, he said, was not sectarian knowledge belonging to any particular caste, creed or entity, but meant for all living entities.
ISKCON founder A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada who went to the U.S. in 1965 and founded ISKCON in 1966 preached the message in the U.S. In 12 years, he travelled all over the world 14 times. He gave an institutional structure to preach the message of Bhagawad Gita in an organised way. He built 108 temples and wrote more than 80 volumes of books. “We have more than 500 ISKCON temples in more than 160 countries”, he said.

About the project

Vellore popularly known as Fort Town of Tamilnadu is situated in the Northern part of Tamilnadu and surrounded by small towns like Arcot, Arni, etc. It has a big historical background. It is Chennai – Bangalore highway kms from Chennai. Katpadi Railway Junction is the main Railway Station which is on the Chennai – Bangalore Railway line. It is one of the fast developing towns of Tamilnadu. The famous Christian Missionary Hospital (C.M.C). V.I.T, Vellore Institute of Technology and Golden Temple are situated in Vellore.
ISKCON was started preaching in Vellore before 7 years in a rented place. In the past 7 years it has made many fulltime and family devotees. Its Krishna Janmastami function conducted at Ford Ground every year attracts thousands of people. To provide a base for the devotees for practising Krishna consciousness and attract the General people ISKCON Vellore has decided to build its own temple for this purpose it has purchased 7 acres of land in a village known as Poigai Mottur, which is 10 kms from Vellore old Bus Stand and New Bus Stand.  
ISKCON, Vellore project has three phases. In the first phase a Temple (Double Storey) will be built. It will have a temple hall which cans accommodate 700 devotees, 3 guest rooms, 3 rooms for official purpose and a Brahmachari Ashram which can accommodate 60 devotees. Another building known as Prasadam Bhavan has been already constructed which have a big kitchen and Prasadam Hall. 
In the Second Phase a big guest house with 40 rooms will be constructed with all facilities. It is meant for giving accommodations etc., In this ground floor of this building a Govinda restaurant will be constructed to provide.  
There will be small deities of six Goswamis also. Big boundary walls along with four gopurams will surround the temple and Vimana will be on Radha-Krishna deity. The whole stone structure will have intricate carvings and paintings.

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