Minister Narendra Modi on January 28 addressed the ceremony commemorating the 1111th ‘Avataran Mahotsav’ of Bhagwan Shri Devnarayan Ji in Bhilwara, Rajasthan. PM Modi performed mandir darshan and parikrama and also planted a neem sapling. He also performed Purnahuti in the ongoing Vishnu Mahayagya at Yagya Shala.
The people of Rajasthan worship Bhagwan Shri Devnarayan Ji, and his followers are spread across the length and breadth of the country. He is revered especially for his work towards public service.
Addressing the gathering, PM Modi emphasised that he had not come here as a Prime Minister but as a pilgrim who wished to seek the blessing of Bhagwan Shri Devnarayan Ji. He also expressed gratitude for being able to perform ‘purnahuti’ in the ongoing Vishnu Mahayagna at the Yagya Shala. “I feel blessed by getting ‘darshan’ of both Devnarayan ji and ‘Janta Janardan’”, the Prime Minister said. “Like every other pilgrim who is here, I seek blessings from Bhagwan Shri Devnarayan Ji for the constant development of the nation and welfare of the poor”, PM Modi said.
Highlighting the grand occasion of the 1111th Avataran Diwas of Bhagwan Shri Devnarayan, PM Modi also noted the cultural programmes that have been taking place here for the past week and the active participation of the Gurajar community. He also praised the efforts of every individual in the community and congratulated them on occasion.
Referring to the continued ancient flow of Indian consciousness, PM Modi said that India is not just a land mass but is an expression of our civilisation, culture, harmony and possibilities. He talked about the resilience of the Indian civilisation, as many other civilisations could not adapt to the changing times and perished. Despite many efforts taking place to break India geographically, culturally, socially and ideologically, no power could finish India, PM Modi said.
PM Modi said that Bhagwan Shri Devnarayan always gave precedence to service and people’s welfare. He recounted Shri Devnarayan’s devotion to the people’s welfare and his choice of service to humanity. “Path shown by Bhagwan Devnarayan is of ‘Sabka Vikas’ through ‘Sabka Saath’ and the country, today, is following the same path”. The Prime Minister said. For the past 8-9 years, the country has been trying to empower every section that has remained deprived and neglected. We are moving with the mantra of ‘precedence to the deprived’, PM Modi added.
PM Modi recalled the time when there was huge uncertainty about the availability and quality of ration for the poor. Every beneficiary is getting a full ration and getting it free. He added that the Ayushman Bharat scheme had addressed the worry about medical treatment.
“We are also addressing the poor section’s concern about housing, toilet, gas connection and electricity”, he further said.
PM Modi opined that no one knows the worth of water as much as Rajasthan. He lamented that even after many decades of independence, only three crore families had received tapped water connections in their homes, and more than 16 crore families had to struggle for water on a daily basis.
Referring to Bhagwan Devnarayan’s campaign to make ‘Gau Seva’ a medium of social service and social empowerment, PM Modi pointed out the growing spirit of Gau Seva in the country. He also mentioned the nationwide vaccination campaign for foot and mouth disease, the establishment of Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog and Rashtriya Gokul Mission. “‘Pashu Dhan’ (Cattles) are key parts of our rural economy apart from being integral to our faith and tradition, that is why, for the first time, Kisan Credit Card has been extended to the animal husbandry segment and herders”, PM Modi asserted.
Recalling the Paanch Prans he said during his address to the nation on Independence Day in 2022, PM Modi reiterated the objective of taking pride in our own heritage, breaking the slavery mentality, keeping our responsibilities towards the nation in mind, remembering the martyrdom of the freedom fighters and walking the path shown by our ancestors. He underlined that Rajasthan is a land of heritage where one can find the excitement of creation and celebration, where one can find charity in labour, and where bravery is a household ritual. The land is synonymous with colours and ragas.
PM Modi also noted the sterling contribution of personalities like Tejaji to Pabuji, Gogaji to Ramdevji, and Bappa Rawal to Maharana Pratap and said great personalities, leaders, and local deities from this land have always guided the country.
He also noted the contribution of the Gurjar community, which has always been synonymous with valour and patriotism. “Be it national defence or protection of culture, the Gurjar community has played the role of protector in every period”, he said and gave examples of Krantiveer Bhoop Singh Gurjar, also known as Vijay Singh Pathik who led the inspiring Bijolia Kisan Movement.
PM Modi also emphasised the importance of the new generation of the Gujjar community in taking forward the message of Bhagwan Devnarayan Ji and his teachings.
“Today, India speaks on every major platform of the world with unfettered confidence while reducing its dependence on other countries. We have to live up to the expectations of the world by proving our resolutions”, PM Modi said.
PM Modi also noted the coincidence that in the 1111th year of Bhagwan Devnarayanji, who appeared on a lotus, India assumed the presidency of G-20, whose logo also shows the lotus carrying the earth.
Union Minister of State for Culture, Arjun Ram Meghwal, head priest of Malaseri Dugri, Hemraj Ji Gurjar, were also present on the occasion.