The silver jubilee of Bharat Mata Mandir, Haridwar, was celebrated from September 13 to 20 in Haridwar. Uttarakhand Chief Minister Shri BC Khanduri, VHP president Shri Ashok Singhal and Acharya Balkrishna of Patanjali Yogapeeth visited the Bharat Mata Mandir on September 13 to wish the founder of the Mandir Swami Satyamitrananda Giri on his birth anniversary.
Speaking on the occasion Shri BC Khanduri said it was the duty of all citizens to improve and maintain the purity of the river Ganga. He said while the state government was taking steps to clean the holy river, citizens? action would be imperative for the same. He hoped that with the cooperation of people, the river would be as pure and clean when it entered UP as it was in Gangotri. He talked about the Ganga Action Plan and admitted that the benefits of the plan had been inadequate vis-a-vis the expenditure.
Praising Swami Satyamitra-nanda Giri, Shri Khanduri said Swamiji'sinvaluable guidance and lessons on unity would be remembered by generations to come. He wished Swamiji on his birthday and said Uttarakhand was proud to have the guidance and blessings of the learned saints like Swami Satyamitrananda Giri.
Swami Satyamitrananda presented the Chief Minister a string of rudraksh beads and a cheque of Rs 1.51 lakh towards the flood relief and rehabilitation of the flood-affected people in Bihar. Additionally, he presented the Vishwa Hindu Parishad a cheque of Rs 51,000 towards Vanvasi work and a cheque of Rs 11,000 to the Vanvasi Ekal schools. General secretary of Patanjali Yogapeeth, Acharya Balkrishna said the Ganga'scleanliness must be ensured and the Ganga should be declared a national heritage.
Three hundred women sanitation workers were honoured at the function.
VHP president Shri Ashok Singhal prayed for long life of Swami Satyamitrananda. Noted saint Swami Govind Dev Giri of Pune and Kushal Ben Modi were also present on the occasion.
On September 21, a huge rally comprising largely of women, marched through the streets of Dehradun. Seeking the government'shelp, the rallysts sent a memorandum to Chief Minister of Uttarakhand and Prime Minister. The memorandums were handed over to SDM Shri Ashok Arora. Swami Ramdev is convenor of Ganga Raksha Manch, an umbrella organisation of various Hindu religious and social organisations which pledged to save the Ganga from domestic and industrial pollution. Swami Ramdev'sfirst demand is the stalling of nearly 1000-km-long Ganga Expressway Project from Noida to Balia on the left bank of the river. The project was launched by Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Mayawati after coming to power in 2007.
Appealing to the people to maintain the purity of the river Ganga, Swami Chidanand Saraswati Muni said people of Brazil and America took the responsibility of cleaning their rivers Amajonia and the Mississippi, why should the people of India not take the moral responsibility of cleaning the Ganga? It is a great irony that on one hand, Indians worship the Ganga and on the other hand they themselves are polluting it.
Swami Haridas said the Ganga is considered to be the most sacred river of the Hindus which is supposed to get them rid of their sins. This Ganga is being polluted by them. It is the duty of every Indian to maintain its purity and keep it free from pollution. Sadhvi Ritambhara said it is the greatest sin to pollute the mother Ganga and those who pollute it must be punished.