Monday, August 26, 2019

Mahanayaka of Mahabharata

Mahanayaka of Mahabharata

Mahabharata is popularly known as the war epic of Kauravas and Pandavas. It was ignited by the insult of Duryodhana by Dropadi during his visit to Indraprastha, followed by chirharan of Dropadi by Dushasan in Hastinapura. And it brought out the Mahanayaka of India, Lord Krishna. There are many stories and sub stories in the epic, but the major story and one of the major reasons of the war was the insult of Drona by Drupada, his childhood friend.

Kurus, Panchalas and Maghadhas were the three major kingdoms of North India. Kurus rules along Yamuna river and Panchalas ruled along the Ganga river. Drupad, the son of Panchala King Prishata was sent for Ashram Education to Rushi Bhardwaj. Rishi’s son Drona was of the same age, therefore, Drupada and Drona became friend. And they pledged to share each other’s fortune and Drupada promised that after ascending the throne, he would share half of his kingdom with Drona.

Thereafter, Drupada became the King of Panchalas and Drona after marrying Kripi, the daughter of Kurus priest Kripacharya, was living in poverty. When Parshurama was distributing his wealth he went to him. But by the time he reached, Parashurama had distributed all his wealth. However, in sympathy, he taught Drona all the ware fare knowledge he had. Drona then went back home to raise his son Ashwatthama. But one day, when other children were playing after drinking milk, Kripi applied paste of water and flour to the lips of Ashwatthama so that he could also say that he had drunk milk. The poverty disturbed Drona, pushed him to arrive to the court of his friend Drupad to seek help. But Drupad insulted him saying that friendship exists between equals and not between a king and a poor brahmin. If had hurt Drona to the core. He took pledged to take revenge of the insult.

Drona then became the teacher of Kauravas and Pandavas, created the best warrior Arjun. In Gurudakshina, he told them to capture Drupad. Arjuna captured Drupad and Drona snatched one half of his kingdom to the north of river Ganga. The Kuru kingdom of Hastinapura grew faster with great warriors like Bhisma, Drona, Arjun, Duryodhana, Karna, etc. Humiliated from the defeat, to recapture his strength, Drupad was searching for a great warrior to marry his beautiful daughter Krishnaa who could outstrip Drona and his disciples. He raised the query before Rishi Sandipani during his visit to Panchala. He suggested few names but Drupad asked him to get Krishna Vasudev to marry his Krishnaa. Lord Krishna became famous by routing Jarasandha, destroyed Kalyavana and killed Karavirapura Vasudev. Rishi Sandipani then went to Dwarka and presented the offer of Drupa before Lord Krishna. Lord Krishna calculated the pros and cons. Accepting the proposal was making him enemy of Pandavas and rejecting it was making the union of Drupad (Panchala-UP) and Jarasandha (Maghadha-Bihar). He met Drupad and the meeting led to a famous Swayamvara of Dropadi (Krishna), the beginning of a great game of politics making Lord Krishna the Mahanayaka. 

After Lakshagriha event, everybody was believing that Pandavas had died but Krishna being a Lord was knowing the truth. He and Balram went to the Swayamvara, but when all the eyes were at Draupadi, the most beautiful lady of the time, (it was said that the lotus fragrance of her body was spreading to a yojan-13 kms), Lord Krishna was watching five Brahmins standing in a corner. He couldn’t recognise the four but was sure about the fifth, his disciple and friend Arjuna. Arjuna won the Swayamvara, and as per the tradition or by words of Kunti, Draupadi married to five Pandavas, but remained a close friend of Lord Krishna. The kingdom of Hastinapura was divided and Dhutrastra gave Indraprastha to Pandavas. During the visit of Duryodhana to Indraprastha, when he fell down on the illusion pond, Draupadi laughed at him and said, ‘the blind man’s son is also blind’. It could’ve been taken as a lighter joke between brother in law and sister in law, but it hurt Duryodhana to his core. He invited Pandavas to Hastinapura for Gotra yagya. And with the dice tricks of Shakuni, Yudhisthira lost his kingdom and Draupadi in dice gamble with Duryodhana. She was dragged to the court by her hair and was disrobed by Dushasana. Krishna was not present in the court. The old men Bhisma, Dhutrastra, Vidur, Dronacharya, Kripacharya, etc, became silent due to the terms of the agreement. Draupadi was saved by her Dharma. The Dharma of legal arguments. She raised the voice and questioned the validity of her being wager. As her husband after losing himself in the gamble became slave and the slave had no right to his wife, and therefore the wager was invalid. She warned Dhritarashtra for the dire consequences and her humiliation was put to an end. She was saved by herself, by her Dharma of defence. She left to the forest with her five husbands for thirteen years as per the terms of the agreement of the lost game. But she couldn’t forget and forgave the insult to her dignity. When Lord Krishna met her in the forest after the event of the insult, she had questioned him too. Why was she humiliated in public? What was the value of she becoming the daughter of brave King Drupad, wife of five great warriors Pandavas and a friend of Lord Krishna? Lord Krishna promised her that the revenge of her humiliation would be taken. The war of Mahabharata was fought and except twelve survivors, all the warriors of 18 Akshauhinis armies of both the sides were killed. On thr 15th day of the war, Drona killed Drupad and he was killed by Drupad’s son Dhristradyumna. One Akshauhini equals to 21870 Chariots, 21870 elephants, 65610 cavalry and 109350 soldiers. Lord Krishna, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu couldn’t prevent the events of the wars and the destructions. 

India from those days more reactive to insults and carries a culture of dislikes then the likes. The insult of Drona by Drupad was the seed of the war of Mahabharata that made Lord Krishna the Mahanayaka of India. His preaching of Gita to Arjun at the battlefield of Kurukshetra is the lighthouse for all those who are searching for peace, solutions and liberation. 

Jai Shree Krishna.

25 August 2019

Friday, August 2, 2019

जिजीविषेत् शतं समाः

जिजीविषेत् शतं समाः

कुर्वन्नेवेह कर्माणि जिजीविषेत् शतं समाः।
एवं त्वयि नान्यथेतोऽस्ति न कर्म लिप्यते नरे ॥ (Ishawasya Verse.2)

इस संसार में कर्म करते हुए ही मनुष्य को सौ वर्ष जीने की इच्छा करनी चाहिये।इस प्रकार कर्म करते हुए ही जीने की इच्छा करने से मनुष्य में कर्म का लेप नहीं होता।

जिजीविषेत्, Upanishad tell us to desire for life not for the death. Life is a gift of God to be used for the service to the society. The attachment to worldly objects brings sorrow, bonding and disturbances. Attachments to them brings death and Detachment brings life. 

Whatever you have, enjoy but with detachment. तेन त्यक्तेन भुंजीथा:।त्याग द्वारा इसका उपभोग करना। 

Look at a Dog and a Crow. Dog is a faithful animal to its master but when it gets a bread, it will hold under the foot, look around and eats if another dog is not around. If another dog comes, it will bark, fight and ensures that it runs away. But look a crow, though not liked by humans for its unpleasant calls kraa kraa, but when a crow finds a bread, it will start cawing and call other crows to share the bread. And they eat the bread altogether peacefully without any fight. 

What do you prefer? An instinct of a dog or of a crow? 

शतं जीवेम शरद: But with the mantra “तेन त्यक्तेन भुंजीथा:”, जिसने छोड़ा उसने पाया।  मा गृधः कस्यस्विद्धनम्‌ ॥ Do not covet, for whose is wealth?

2 August 2019

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Animal in Human

Animals in Human

It was year 1960, Vijaychandra Gandhi, a student of BTex, after giving his last year’s examinations went to Vrajeshwari Temple, hot water springs at Ganeshpuri near Thane, Mumbai. He heard about an Avadhuta Nityanand Baba, whom people used to pray and get their desires fulfilled. He went there and stood up in the queue of Darshan. The Avadhuta was sleeping. When his turn came, he saw a 6 feet dark black man with big belly was sleeping carefree. He touched his feet and prayed. The Avadhuta was still sleeping, therefore, to attract his attention, he touched his stomach. The Avadhuta opened his eyes, looked at him and told Vijay, the son of —-father, —- mother, what do you want? Vijaychandra was surprised how could the Avadhuta knew his name and names of his parents. As usual, he prayed to get first position in the BTex examination he had given. The Avadhuta gave him chickoo fruit and blessed. Vijaychandra was unable to surpass the topper and was not expecting first rank because he knew his performance in the exam. But when the results were out, he secured first position. He then took a job in a factory in Srinagar and went to Rishikesh and Badrinath on religious tour in 1963. The Avadhuta died in 1962, he was unaware. After the morning Aarti at Badrinath Temple at 5AM, when he was moving out of the temple, somebody pat him on the back and told, Vijay the son of —-father, —- mother, had you been sent by Baba Nityanand? He was surprised, how did this man also knew about his details and his meeting with Baba Nityanand. He then took more interest in spirituality and went to Badrinath for 13-14 times during the period 1963-1974. He used to stay for 4-5 days and learn many things from the Anami Sadhu. Whenever, he tried to inquire about his name etc, the Sadhu told him, whoever has name will die. As the Sadhu was mobile, and there was no communication means, Vijaychandra inquired with him that how could he convey his arrival to Badrinath and meet him after he starts from Mumbai. As advised by the Sadhu, he would buy train ticket, put it on his open palm, and communicate to the Sadhu by Sankalp that he is reaching Badrinath at —date and —-time. Surely, the Sadhu was present at the spot during all his 13-14 visits.  If he desired for water, the Sadhu would hold the empty glass and it would fill with water. He would touch the stick and it would lit. Vijaychandra was more interested in money therefore, with his blessings, when gold price was ₹150/10 gm, he could raise ₹1.25 lakh and owned a mill. Later he moved to USA and settled there. The Sadhu taught him Kundalini, knowledge of Self, and the most important knowledge of futurology and watching animals in humans. After the departure of the Sadhu from this world, Vijaychandra came to know that he was Mr. Venkatraman, a Bar at Law and a retired Judge of the Supreme Court of India. He meets him when he remembers him even today and dialogues with him. The way of communication is different in colours and signs that he interprets correctly.

Each of us are resembling with one of the animals or birds around us. We carry the characters and nature of that animal/bird in human life and carry similar diseases and cause of deaths. Some complex personalities are mixed of more than one birds/animals. We the humans are the incarnations of the animals and birds around. Vijaychandra had studied the features of many birds and animals and by looking at the face, ears, eyes, legs, he will match the individual with one of the animals or birds, analyse and then predict his strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. As per their beliefs, the animals and birds are turning humans and after death they will again turn into animals. The cycle ends when one is self realised during human life.

His guru has given him Mantras that he uses for the welfare of the society and helping the people who come in his contact. He carries the same zeal and enthusiasm in his 80s.

I am sure, after reading this article, when you look at your face, eyes, ears, neck, etc, in the mirror and watch the hands, legs, the toes, the fingers, and most importantly study your nature, you will find one of the animals/birds in you. You may be Cow, Ox, Goat, Deer, Elephant, Horse, Dog, Cat, Tiger, Lion, Wolf, Fox, Rat, Crow, Eagle, Peacock, Parrot, Sparrow, etc. It may be a list of some 300-400 animals and birds. The simple test, the animal or the bird you like the most, mostly you are that only. It’s interesting. Study it well and check your physical and mental health problems, do the SWOT analysis and use the knowledge in solving problems and achieving goals. You will like or hate the company of other humans depending upon which animals or birds they are! Isn’t it interesting?

Enjoy watching animal-bird in you😜

30 July 2019

Thursday, June 27, 2019

SBR Clean Street Food Hub Ahmedabad

SBR Clean Street Food Hub Amdavad

A land owner of 9000 sqm land costing ₹200 CR in the costliest area of Sindhu Bhavan Road of Amdavad preferred profit to food street, invested ₹6 CR on infrastructure on shops and establishment and the street has been awarded the Clean Street Food Hub by the FSSAI, GOI. “If I sell the land, I get good money but what to do with that cash or bank balance. With the food street, the land is protected and it gives happiness when we see people enjoy their evenings with family friends and children and some people get employment”. The owner Ramanbhai Patel justified his investment. His son nick named Bhailoo had a good start up adventure in building the Clean Street Food Hub.

There are 41 food brands under one roof. Very recently this place has picked up as “we serve  everyone and everything”. People from all the ages can satisfy their palate here. There are some brands from the old city and some are the new ventures of the rather urban populace. Opened daily in the evening, at a time 750 people could be served in one session. Weekend there is a foot fall of about 3500 people.

One may start the evening with ‘9834’ serving all fruit related items and their Jamun shot being the cherry on the cake also adds a feather in the cap. ‘Ice Studio’ serves wonderful mocktails with jamun shots as their star product. Some may opt for ‘Sher Di’ which provides fresh sugarcane juice with some flavours you never heard off.  'Tropical Sno' an American brand for shaved ice preparations, which is a relief for summer heat and your thirsty throat, made with RO water and full flavours tastes as good as it looks. ‘Aarya's Grill’ is famous for their pull out bread and Pesto meal. ‘Sizzling Brownie’ as the name suggest serves different types of brownies and some shakes as well. ‘Friesacc’ serves different kind of potato fries, their curly fries is something you must try atleast once.

What do you have now? Chinese, Punjabi, South Indian, Mexican, Italian, Gujarati, Continental?

The stall brings the east to your platter with steamy momos, noodles and Indo-chinese.
With ‘Fondue Nation’ bringing a whole new trend of eating out of a Fondue pot the Malvani fondue is a must have. ‘Just Live’ which prepares a fusion Italian, Mexican and oriental which is all exceptional. ‘Food for Good’ serves Lebanese and authentic Mexican food there stars being burrito bowls and falafel rolls. ‘Belgians Waffwich’ gives Belgian waffle with different chocolates. ‘Indo-chinese Cuisine’ serving the paranthas of India is Apna paratha house as well. ‘Mishmash’ have IndoArabian food and their Manakeesh and Falafel wraps and outstanding hummus. ‘Nachos n More’ stays true to its name and have a wide variety of Nachos and a lot more. ‘Tandoori Sizzle' very popular for there Sizzlers and combos are perfect for a meal for one appetite. 'Stick with it' serving the best possible things that could be served on a stick like waffles and pirate twisters with combination of sauces.

For pizza lovers, ‘Chipotle from BBC’ is burrito bowls joint and most famous being the ‘woodfired pizza’ from BBC only adds a woody flavour to the pizza and is savoured by everyone. ‘Jashuben Shah old pizza’ is familiar to all Amdavadis and serves sandwiches and Gujarati style Pizzas. ‘Mobility’ which has been presenting there healthy fast-food like wheat pizzas, wheat burgers and wheat pastas is a hit amongst the health conscious fast food eaters. Architect husband has designed the grill and his wife is making the pizza. ‘Fat boys’ have the fresh dough pizzas with daily prepared sauces and defining an American Indian food style.

South Express takes you to the ‘South Indian lane’ with their family paper dosa which is five feet long. Gujarati pronounce dosa as Dhonsa, ‘Maharaja Dhonsa’ is one of the oldest name in Ahmedabad dosa lovers and they made their name from Manekchowk, their hit is ‘Ghotala’ Dosa.

‘Mahalaxmi Bhajipav’ again an age old name and know for their consistent taste in Pavbhaji still rules the heart of all food lovers. ‘Meraki’, experimenting with Pavbhaji and providing Kaala Bhaaji with an amazing taste and the ‘Tibbs Frankie’ at the same spot adds on to the menu.

‘Chana Zorr’ is one stall which serves only chana preparations with their outstanding chana tawa masala and Lachcha Parantha which is also a must try in this ‘Food Town’. ‘Social Lounge's barbeque peri peri paneer which is served with all world class Teas is healthy and flavourful, ‘Bowls of Buddha’ bringing food for soul and body have healthy ‘Quinoa salad’ bowls for  a healthy tummy.

‘Chat on chat GB’ brings the North Indian delicacy of chaat and panipuri with their Jaleba (bigger version of jalebi) is another reason why the crowd flocks to this stall.

For Khichadi lovers, ‘House of Khichdi’ from Big Bite cafe(BBC) is serving varieties of khichdi and the must have from that place is is Palak corn khichdi.

After eating all the healthy food, it’s time for best shakes in the town from the ‘Shake Maker’ who have a speciality thick shakes. ‘Asharfilal’ being famous for the best kulfi's in town. ‘Cryolab’ as the name suggest is cryogenic (using nitrogen) providing freshly churned  icecream with your favourite topping is again pleasing to all the senses. ‘Havmor’ being another coveted brand for icecreams and their monthly special flavours satisfy the sweet tooth of Ahmedabad. ‘Candy House’ is for spoiling the kids in sugar candies from all over the world there best is chocolate candies. The ‘Turkcream’ brings the Turkish flavours and style of serving which is also an entertaining thing to watch to Ahmedabad for the first time. ‘Chocolate Room’ which is in fact an Australian food brand which has recently picked it's pace in India and opened  lot _of_ franchises has offered chocolate bomb which is a delight not only for the tounge buy also to your eyes. Going next to pure beans and creams which is the must visit place at ‘SBR Social’ is very renowned for their coffees and home made desserts.

In you are in Amdavad or visiting Amdavad don’t miss the “Clean Street Food Hub SBR”. Kankaria Food Street in the East and SBR in the West are the best places to visit and feel the taste of Amdavad. Don’t miss enjoying evening with family and friends.

15 June 2019

Food of China

Food of China

China is a vast Country with a geographical area of 9.597million sqkm where 1.39 billion people live in 23 provinces, 4 municipalities and two special administrative regions. The food and culture varies amongst Southern-Northern-Western-Eastern China. North and West people like to eat wheat food, such as dumplings noodles and East South people always eat rice. In Zhejiang province, Hangzhou people like to eat rice, light and little sweet food, but east west people in Zhejiang like Spicy food. It’s so variable. Different provinces have different food habits.

Gujarati are fond of Chines food of soups, manchurian, noodles, chilli paneer, fried rice at home. But when traveling to China they carry a belief that Chinese Food in China is not tasty and mostly non vegetarian. As usual, they carry home food of khakhra-ganthia and sukhadi in their bags. In reality, unless they explore the dishes of China, they can’t know the truth. In fact, Chines do eat non-veg food but their non-veg dishes at home have 80% vegetables. Common man in China earns RNB 10000/month, therefore, can’t afford non-veg meal everyday. If one is open to the taste of China, the Chinese vegetarian restaurants can serve varieties of dishes to the veggies at reasonable price.

Different provinces and regions have different food habits in China.

People in Southern China (e.g. Guangdong province and Hong Kong/Macau region) like eating fresh vegetables every day. Due to aquatic products accounting for a higher proportion, they prefer fresh-water fish and fresh seafood. Many people have the habit of drinking morning tea and eating midnight snack. They eat 3-5 meals a day. Their dietary expenditure is big, however, their cooking skill and aesthetic ability in cooking is strong.

Most people in Northern China (e.g. Beijing city, Shandong province and Mongolia) eat three meals a day, predominantly eat pasta, from time to time eat wheat, cereals and rice. Common food there are: steamed bread, noodles, corn congee, pancake, vegetarian dumplings and steamed buns.

Main food for people in South-West of China (e.g. Sichuan province, Yunnan province and Tibet) are rice and glutinous rice. Wheat, corn, sweet potato, broad bean, highland barley, buckwheat, soybean, red millet and sorghum are their preferences as well. Food in South-West of China are generally spicy.

In Mid of China region (Hunan, Hubei and Henan provinces), rice is thestaple food. Part of the mountain like to eat sweet potato, cassava, banana, potato, corn, wheat, sorghum and so on. They are good at making vermicelli, glutinous rice cake and bamboo rice.

Typical cities in Eastern China region (Shanghai city, Zhejiang province, Jiangsu province and Taiwan), people mainly eat rice, seldom for flour and grains. Three meals a day are with equal portion of meat and vegetables, as well as sufficient fruit. Their taste is mostly light, generally the combination of dishes, soup and staple food. The rice bowl from Eastern China is small and the dish plate is large. The tableware is delicate.

People of North-West China (Gansu province, Shanxi province and Sinkiang) usually eat corn and wheat, and also other coarse cereals, such as millet and naked oats etc.

People of North-east China (Jilin province, Liaoning province and Heilongjiang province) eat  staple food made of cereals, rice and wheat. Sorghum rice and sticky bean buns are the most distinctive cuisine. Their favorite vegetables are: chinese cabbage, potato, soybean, vermicelli, cucumber and mushroom. People in north-east of China love to eat white meat, fish, shrimp and exotic animals, with oily and salty taste as preference.

Eight is their lucky number, therefore, if you try the eight course veggie meal of China, you may feel complete with your trip to China. It starts with Kalimeris and walnuts with black fruffle and braised spring bamboo shoot chickpea mash with toon sauce; followed by Fijian style steamed 18 ingredients soup; yellow zucchini mash with mushrooms crackers basil tomato sauce; pan fried black porcini mushroom with white asparagus beans and tofu; seasonal cattail vegetable with bamboo fungus sweet beans and nostoc with corn potato puree; chefs house made maitake patty with kalimeris sesame oil sauce quinoa and orange baby carrot; Stone pot toon leaf black truffle mushroom mixed rice satay mini mushroom. It finishes with vanilla coconut icecream with wheat cake and chocolate cashew. Can you stop your mouth from watering?

8 July 2019

Monday, June 3, 2019



Param Shiva is pure consciousness and massive bliss, omniscience, omnipotent and omnipresent. He is self shining illumination, full and independent himself. He is beyond thought construct, beyond grasp of mind, incapable of being described in words.

He manifests, transform himself into the universe out of his own free will and project the universe on the canvas formed by the divine illumination by displaying his nature as the Shakti. Like a picture reflects in mirror, the universe is manifested in the pure self. He is the Supreme Lord manifests himself without intervention of a second separate entity, by the operation of his ever vibrating divine Shakti-Chiti, his very nature.

He is Shambhu, an ocean of nectar, from which the massive current of the play of the Shakti-Chiti assuming the form of the waves of differences and shapes, thereby revealing the Supreme consciousness in gradual shapes. The knowledge becomes the object of knowledge. His trident is his Shakti, the power of will, knowledge and action hold in perfect equilibrium.

His Shakti takes five different expressions: Chiti Shakti (consciousness), Ananda Shakti (bliss), Iccha Shakti (volition), Jnana Shakti (knowledge) and Kriya Shakti (action).

Chiti Shakti, the divine Shakti that enables the Supreme Lord to reveal himself. By its power, he shines forth alone, experiencing himself as the pure ‘I’.

Ananda Shakti by which the Supreme Lord is full in himself, always satisfied and resting in himself.

Iccha Shakti through which the Supreme Lord has unlimited will to create.

Jnana Shakti by which the objects of the universe, manifestations of his self, are made conscious.

Kriya Shakti by which the Supreme Lord is able to manifest all of his intentions, manifest himself as each and every form during his creative activity.

The cycle of divine play of Shiva through his divine Shakti, moves by self limitation (nigraha), creation (sristi), sustenance (sthiti), absorption-cosmic destruction (samhara) and bestowal of grace (anugraha) putting an end to manifestation. Shiva + Shakti = manifestation.

There are 36 constituents, steps of descent into creation. Each higher is the cause of lower. Each higher is relatively more subtle than its next lower. The first 5 constituents are divine Shakti in pure form called Mahamaya and remaining 31 are called Maya (impure-manifestation). The first five are: Shiva, Shakti, Sadashiva, Ishvara, Shuddh Vidhya. The 8 are: Maya, kala kancuka, vidhya kancuka, raga, kala kancuka, niyati kancuka, Purusha, Prakriti. And the 23 are: buddhi (intellect), ahamkara (ego), manas (mind), five organs of knowledge, five motor organs, five subtle elements (शब्द, स्पर्श, रूप, रस, गंध), five gross elements (आकाश, वायु, अग्नि, जल, पृथ्वी).

Thus the universe, with its infinite variety of subjects and objects, is in reality it is the manifestation of Supreme Lord as the universe in his self expansion of his Shakti. Shakti-Durga opens herself out in creation. When she closes herself up or withdraws the universe disappears.

In short, the Supreme Lord manifests himself as universe by means of his free and independent will using his own Shakti as the material and himself as the screen on which he manifests. Everything manifest is a self manifestation of Supreme Lord and no different from him.

And what is liberation? To attain Supreme ‘I’ ness. To search and restore. He is You, the pure ‘I’, can conceal in bondage or liberate. Before body turns into dead body, till Shakti (life light) is present, one can make a choice. To bond or to liberate through the trident : will, knowledge and action.

3 June 2019

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Hangzhou, a beautiful Elegancy of the World

Hangzhou, a beautiful Elegancy of the World

Venetian merchant and travel adventurer Marco Polo came to China with his father and uncle in 1278. It took 7 years for them to voyage to China.  They stayed in China for 17 years and left in around 1292. It took them 8 years to returned to Italy. Marco stayed in Hangzhou for a year. In his book, ‘Il Milione’ - ‘The Travels of Marco Polo’, he described Hangzhou as the most beautiful elegancy of the world. Somebody asked him, is it so beautiful as you have described? What I wrote is not even the 1/10 of the actual beauty of Hangzhou, he replied. He recorded it the city greater than any in the world as it was a great centre of trade and commerce. Ibn Battuta, Moroccan explorer visited Hangzhau in 1345 described it as the biggest city he had ever seen. He was particularly impressed by the large number of well-crafted and well-painted Chinese wooden ships with colored sails and silk awnings in the canals. Hangzhou was three times a capital of China, one of the seven capitals of China. It is believed that Hangzhou was the largest city in the world from 1180 to 1315 and from 1348 to 1358.

Hangzhou, the capital of China’s Zhejiang province, is the southern terminus of the ancient Grand Canal waterway, which originates in Beijing. It sits at the head of Hangzhou Bay. Its beautiful West Lake (Xihu), is the most popular sight, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, celebrated by poets and artists since 9th Century. It encompasses islands, temples, pavilions, gardens, arched bridges and at southern side the ancient Lyngyin Pagoda. It’s perimeter is 15 km perimeter and the depth is around 1.5 to 2.7, and the Cultural Landscape covers an area of 3,323 hectares. There are two causeway across the lake. Buddhism gift of India to China, the Lotus flowers in the lake blossom in July in pink and white colours. People eat stems of lotus plant as vegetables and use leaves for cooking rice. Though not really broken but the ‘Broken Bridge’ in the middle of the lake is an attraction centre for the tourist. It is in east-west direction, therefore, when the snow melt due to Sunlight from the east, the western part of the bridge remains white with the snow cover, the Sun light creates an illusion of break of the bridge, therefore, called the broken bridge. The walkways were built with the dragged mud of the lake. On walk ways, there are beautiful Sigamo trees, expand their leaves in Summer to provide sheds and drop their leaves in winter to pass Sunshine over the walkers. They make the streets colourful in autumn when the leaves change colours. Adjacent to the lake includes historical pagodas, cultural sites, and hills, including Phoenix Mountain.

There is Buddhist Monastery Lyngyin, founded by an Indian Buddhist Monk Huili (Chinese name) in 328 AD during Eastern Jin Dynasty. It was reconstructed in 975 AD. The entry to the scenic area starts with a screen wall marked with inscription ‘the western heaven is within reach’. Entire area of Lingyin-Feilai is dotted with historic buildings and artwork, including pagodas, statues and centuries old trees. The largest Pagoda located near the entrance at the foot of Feilai Feng (Flying Peak) called Elder Li’s Pagoda houses the ashes of Huili. The peak is made of limestone and as per the legend, was brought from India, flew to Hangzhou overnight as a demonstration of the omnipotence of Buddhist law. In the cave of Bodhisatva Guanyin, one can see from a certain position ‘one thread of heaven’, a silver line of Sunlight comes from the crack of the ceiling upto the surface. Carved in the Song Dynasty (10-13 Century) with a length of 6.7 metres, the grotto contains relief sculptures depicting stories of eminent monks on their pilgrimages to India for Buddhist scriptures. The first features the story of ‘The White Horse Carrying the Buddhist Sutras” of the 1st Century about two Indian monks Matanga and Dharmaratha, the second features the story of Chinese Monk Zhu Shixing travelled to Western Asia in 3ed Century and the third features the pilgrimage of Master Xuanzang in 7th Century for Buddhist scriptures.

In the temple area, the first idol is of Veda the disciple of Buddha, made from one peace of camphor tree. The deity holds the Sword touching to the ground, suggests warm welcome to the temple but indicates no night stay! In the main temple, the 33.6 metre tall Mahavira Hall houses Statue of Shakyamuni (Buddha) carved from camphor wood is the largest wooden Buddhist statue in China. To the right and left of the Buddha four big size idols of four powerful deities of four directions are placed: to the right, east deity for knowledge and south deity for power; to the left west deity for water and north deity for the wind. There are twelve statues of Buddha’s twelve disciples, each representing twelve signs of zodiac and carries symbol of animal one each: horse, monkey, sheep, rooster dog, pig, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, ox, rat. Gyanyin, Bodhisatva Avalokitesvara and Medicine Buddha Bhsisajyaguru are important halls people visit and pray. The Hall of Five Hundred Arhats shaped like a Swastika, houses the bronze statues of 500 arahats, each carry different looks and seated on a unique ornate seat. At the centre, where the arms of the swastika join, stands a bronze canopy housing statues of four bodhisattvas.

And tired of a day walking, the tourists may relax with the on water live action spectacular show of 90 minutes “Enduring Memories of Hangzhou - Impression West Lake”, featuring a symphony orchestra and dazzling natural night scenes. It was firstly performed during the 2016 G20 Hangzhou Summit. The stage is 3 centimeters beneath the lake's surface. Tea-picking girls dressed in traditional folk clothes, dance of picking tea leaves trippingly in the tender night of the West Lake. Swan Lake appearing on the grand stage is an inventive creation. The ethereal ballet dancers and the miraculous projective images will offer a wonderful viewing experience. Unforgettable Jasmine Flower combines the famous Chinese folk song 'Jasmine Flower' with the Italian Puccini's opera 'Turandot', endowing the classical vocal musical with new western elements. When one Moon lit by electricity is in front of you and the real Moon is on the top of the head and a beautiful romantic dance play makes you feel like sitting in a heaven.

After the show, if you search for vegetarian meal, pick up HDL Restaurant for ‘Hotpot’ vegetarian delicious meal. Veggie may enjoy dishes of tofu, mashroom, fungi, soya stripes, corn, potatoes, etc, boiled in plain water or tomato soup. Rice plate with support dishes of peanuts, chilly sauce, fruits and green tea or barley tea make the meal delicious and complete. For non veggie, wider range of dishes are available. And if you are served by a Chinese host, you may taste many dishes as Chinese are known for ordering many dishes presenting their great hospitality. The food waste in Hangzhau alone may be 20 tones a day. Imagine how much they order, how much they eat and how much they waste! The quality of life of an average Chinese is no less than a rich of India in terms of food and clothing. You may pick up souvenir and other from the articles night market street that opens upto 10 pm. After a tired day, Sangrilla may be a Hotel for the VIPs but Hotel like Grand Wyndham can make the night restful.

Initiated by the reformist policies of Deng Xiaoping of 1978, Hangzhou grew very fast in last 25 years taking advantage of being situated in the Yangtze River Delta, now is one of the most populous city with a population of 6.2 million, also known as the city of opportunities. With the rise of the economy, it has created more jobs, increased population of the city. Service/tourism industry became the largest contributor with more number of hotels, restaurants, shops, tourists. There are hotels where the world leaders come, stay and enjoy the scenic beauty and hospitality of Hangzhou. House of Chiang Kai Shek (Premier of Republic of China 1928-45) is now turned into restaurants of famous brands McDonald and KFC. Apart from tourism, the manufacturing units of the goods adds up the GDP. It is emerging technology hub and home to the e-commerce giant Alibaba (Chinese), also hosted the 11th G20 Sumit in 2016. The administration maintained the environment of the city dust free and clean. Roads are regularly washed with guns mounted under the tankers. It will host Asian Games in 2022. If get a chance, do visit the elegancy of the world to enjoy the scenic beauty, historical monuments, show and hospitality of China.

2 June 2019

Friday, May 31, 2019

Param Shiva

Param Shiva, the Supreme Lord is called Pasupati Nath. Who is the Pasu? Pasu in general term refers to animals. But in Shaivism, it is the individual soul, the fettered being, concealed, limited being,imagines that he is material by nature bound by his actions, affected by the defilements, mineness, spiritual darkness, conditioned in birth, death, delusion, sufferings, happiness, etc; his experience of the Self in the not self, the physical body, objects, etc. Till he is ignorant of his true-real self and is living in this false experience of bondage, he is Pasu. And the Supreme Lord Param Shiva is his Nath as Pasupati.

And who is Param Shiva?

“I”, the pure consciousness, massive bliss and absolute freedom, the true nature as the Supreme Lord.

The bondage of the soul is imaginary, created by his own thought constructs. The journey from Pasu stage to Pasupati is the Sadhana. With divine grace, he liberates himself from the bondage by loosening his grip over the false self through the glory of knowledge of the true self, by experiencing himself as pure consciousness, the Param Shiva (omnipresent) endowed with Supreme Shakti (Durga-Chiti).

And all this world objects are his own glory, existing within himself. “I” is the soul of all that is manifested as the universe. From “me” (pure self), the entire universe with its infinite variety of subjects and objects emanates, manifests as somewhat different from the experiencing subject.

With the knowledge of true self, rope becomes rope, the snake doesn’t exist in a rope and can’t frighten of death.

Pasu can become the Pasupati. Jiva can become Shiva, Param Shiva.

ॐ नमः शिवाय।

31 May 2019

Wednesday, May 8, 2019



Savarna and Avarna were identified as divisions of people in India. Some believe that there are four divisions of ‘four varnas’ of inequality by birth. Some believed that the term was brought by Aryans who migrated to India from Central Asia. Some believed that it was the colour of the skin (pigment) of the people as per their profession (working hours under the Sun), that was established as varna (colour) system in India. But there is one more belief, very different from above all and you may like it to know.

Sanskrit is an ancient language, described as the language of God. It’s grammar was composed by Panini in the 6th Century BC. Panini, Katyayan and Patanjali had created a grammatical platform of the language so well that today it is considered the most scientific language of the world. It is made of consonants and vowels. The base is the 14 Shiv Sutra, also called Maheshwar Sutra. 

नृतावसाने नटराजाराजो ननाद ढक्कां नवपन्चवारम्। 
उद्धर्तुकाम: सनकाद्सिद्धान् एकद्विमर्शे शिवसूत्रजालम्। 

Nataraj Shiva after completion of his Tandava (Cosmic) dance, sounded Damru 14 times and from which the 14 Shiv Sutras-Varnas created. These sounds create maintain regulate and destroy the Universe. These are:

अइउण्, ऋलृक्, एओड्, ऐऔच्, हयवरट्, लण्, ञमङणनम्, झभञ, घढधष्, जबगडदश्, खफछठथचटतव्, कपय्, शषसर्, हल। They are classified as per the places of the sound, as kanthya (अ, क, ख, ग, घ, ङ, ह, :), talu (इ, च, छ, ज, ज्ञ, ञ, य, श), murdha (ऋ, ट, ठ, ड, ढ, ण, र, ष), danta: (लृ, त, थ, द, ध, न, ल, स), oshthau (उ, प, फ, ब, भ, म), kanth-talu (ए, ऐ), kanth-austham (ओ, औ),  dant-austham (व), jihvamulam (~क, ~ख)and nasika (ञ, म, ङ, ण, न, ं).

There are three major vowels: अ, इ, उ, with three divisions हस्व, दीर्घ, प्लुत. Twinkle of an eye is one matra sounds vowel हस्व, two matra sound vowel दीर्घ and three sound प्लुत. The rooster crowing in the morning carry all these three sounds. The sound from above the palate area is called udatta, the sound from below the palate area is called anudatt and the mixture of the two is called swarit. These 3x3 makes 9 distinctions. Again there are further two divisions: nasal and non nasal sounds, makes it 18. There are 18 Varnas. 

And the Sutra is: तुल्यास्यप्रयत्नं सवर्णम्। While making the sound of two Varnas, when the place of the sound and efforts of the speaker are equal and similar, the Varnas are called Savarna. Ex. अ, आ. 

The Sabskritised society was very disciplined in using 18 Varnas in their correct form with right pronouncing because with the change of the sound the meaning changes. स्वजन (relative) can be श्वजन (dog) if not pronounced properly. Therefore, those followed the rules of the grammar properly and pronounced the Varnas well and spoke the language rightly, might had been identified as Savarna. Those carried variations in their pronunciations of varnas were divided into 18 categories and were identified as 18 Varnas (divisions) of the Society. And those who were not part of the Sanskritised language group might had been identified as Avarnas, that had divided the society into Savarnas and Avarnas. Folk language changes at every 36 kms (12 kos). Savarna or Avarna is a distinction of grammar, the sound of communication, depends upon how you hear the Damaru of Shiva. 

If keen to learn more, pick up Ashtadhyayi and follow Panini!😊

8 May 2019

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Closed System

Human body is a complex machine where the life blood moves into the arteries and the oxygen depleted blood return through veins from birth to death in a closed circulatory system. The pure blood pumped into the system by the heart reaches to all the parts of the body and return to it and after purification in the lungs, it is pumped through blood vessels of different size and thickness: the arteries, arterioles, capillaries, venules, and veins.

As we age, narrowing occurs in many capillaries and venules in peripheral, heart and brain, and with the death of cells the death of the organ starts and finally writes the death of the individual. Therefore, it is essential to keep this system clean to make the life longer.

LDL Cholesterols and Diabetes are the two major challenges before the present generation to overcome to maintain blood flow in all the cells upto the last mile of all the body parts from the head to the toes.

God is miraculous but is very wise. He made a heart pump in the creatures to supply pure blood to all the cells but kept the veins in our command to bring back the depleted blood for purification in lungs by movements. Therefore, all the creatures keep walking and moving. The calf muscles in human body are called peripheral heart. Unless they are moved regularly, good functioning of the veins can’t be maintained. Blocked veins may cause thrombosis and may lead into serious health problems.

Keep walking daily, it extends life.

Good morning 😊

16 February 2019

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Medicity Amdavad, a Ray of Hope

Medicity Amdavad, a Ray of Hope

Last Saturday at 7 AM on 2 February 2019, I received a call from Mr. MB Parmar (IAS Rtd). In worry some voice he explained the serious health condition of Mr. RB Dave (IAS Rtd) for a month and the stress of the family, who couldn’t sleep for a fortnight and reached to the dead end of losing the right limb of Mr. Dave after spending ₹10 lakh in a private hospital in Amdavad. Within half an hour Shri Dave’s wife and son came to our house and explained the problem. They are our family friend for 28 years from our Junagadh days. 

Either to cut the right limb or to lose life if infection spread over the body were the options given by the vascular surgeon and they were directed to take decision in 15 minutes. They somehow asked for the time to think and managed to run away to home to think peacefully and reached to our door. 

Either to shift him to the hospital or to call the doctors at home were the options before us. They were upset with the fear of spreading of infections if the wound was opened at home for inspection. And they were not confident of going to Civil Hospital in such serious condition, where common men are going. I realised the dilemma of the family and called a General Surgeon and a Plastic Surgeon from the Civil Hospital Amdavad with a support staff to do dressing after wound was opened for checking. His limb was badly damaged by cutting of the larger portion of the muscles by the vascular surgeon of the private hospital. The arteries of the lower limbs had no flow of fresh blood. Only one bypass artery was saving the limb for awhile. In want of pure blood, the limb was dying. His second right toe developed dry gangrene made the doctors to lose hope but we sustained the ray of hope if the vascular surgeon of UN Mehta Cardiology Institute succeeds in opening the blocked arteries of the thigh and open the blood flow in the lower limb. The family trusted in our words and by evening, the patient was moved to Civil Hospital Amdavad and was admitted. 

Diabetic 68 years old Mr. Dave had developed acute on chronic critical right lower limb ischaemia with acute tenderness, swelling and the discolouration of the affected limb almost a month back. He developed cellulitis on 15 January 2019 and went to a private hospital in Amdavad. Arterial Doppler was done and 17th Jan and CT angio was done on 22nd Jan. CT angiogram of the lower limb vessels revealed acute cut of right distal superficial femoral artery (chronic thrombotic occlusion)till the trifurcation and minimal collateral fillings of posterior tibial and part of peronieal artery only. It was suggestive of complete block of distal superficial femoral and entire popliteal seen. Filling of trifurcation seen. He was treated for cellulitis and fasciotomy was done of the anterolateral compartment on 25th Jan, and further debridement was done on 28th January and negative wound therapy given. His 2nd toe was showing signs of dry gangrene.

Patient was admitted to Civil Hospital/UNM on 2nd February 2019, with open wound and critical lower ischaemia with dry gangrene of the second right toe. Though medicines to control infection were given, but passing 3rd and 4th Feb in a room of Civil Hospital, the patient and his family were waiting for the start of some procedure on the dying limb. But his CRP level was high, therefore, the vascular surgeon was waiting for the infection and inflammation of the arteries to come down by the fall of CRP level. The family was worrying for losing the leg or the life. 

The doctors discussed Two plans: (1)- balloon angioplasty of the affected segment of the artery and to put a stent in the above knee arterialsegment only. (2)- if plan one fails then do upper SFA to posterior tibial artery after wound stabilisation.

Fortunately, his CRP level came down and patient was moved to UNM on 7/2/19 for the execution of the plan 1. Dr. Chirag Doshi, the Vascular Surgeon and his team were able to execute plan first successfully. They have done POBA and inserted a stent in distal SFA opening up 20 cm long block in the thigh artery. To the great luck of Mr. Dave, the arteries of the limb opened up and antegrade flow has been established. With the start of new blood flow, the hope of saving his limb revived. Having done that there are two to three percent chances of reclotting and worsening of the symptoms. The patient is relatively more stable with less pain and is symptomatically better but condition of the wound is precarious at best. 

He would now require plastic surgeon intervention for further management of the open wound either by flap/graft or by the wrap. Hopefully, the Plastic Surgeon Dr. Jayesh Sachade and the General Surgeon Dr. Gunvant Rathod of the Medicity will find out the right answer. Without the flow of fresh blood for long time, his limb nerves are damaged, therefore, it will take two-three months of treatment and physiotherapy for the healing of the nerves to bring them back near to the normal. 

After this traumatic experience of running from pillars to posts and finally reaching to the destination; where Dave family can heal, here are two clear takeaways as per them:

1) Prejudice: Many might have a prejudice for public amenities and particularly healthcare. However, we realized that we are on the path of recovery due to swift actions, proper medications and above all right diagnosis/treatment at Medicity Ahmedabad.

2) Economic: Spending more money does not bring our health on the right track but the proper treatment does. We observe the positive impact on our health due to care and treatment of Doctors of Civil Hospital, Ahmedabad and UN Mehta, Ahmedabad.

“All in One under One roof”, the Medicity Amdavad is going to be the single largest hospital campus of the world with a bed strength of 7100 with all specialities and super specialities, where the Code of Ethics for Doctors are followed the most. 

9 February 2019
Medicity Amdavad 

Crucial quarter of Indian History (16/5/1946 to 16/8/1946)

Crucial Quarter of Indian History (16/5/1946 to 16/8/1946)

Partition of India in 1947 became a dark chapter of human sufferings, displacement of 30 million people, death of more than a million innocent people in violence and loss of movable and immovable properties in billions. The division of Punjab and Bengal pushed the people from all the three groups to migrate out of their homelands. 50% of the Muslims of India preferred to stay in India but most of the Hindus and Shikhs of Pakistan chose to move to India. Punjab was the worst case of violence, in which except Malerkotla, no Muslim survived in East Punjab; and no Hindu or Shikh survived in West Punjab. The unity planned by Lucknow Pact (1916) was destroyed. 

Arab traders brought Islam in India in Malabar (Kerala) and built the first mosque in 629 AD, followed by settlements of trading communities on western coast. 17 years old Muhammad Bin Quasim with an army of Syrian cavalry and Iraqi Mawalis invaded and captured Sindh by capturing Port Debal (near Karachi) defeating the Hindu Raja Dahir at the battle of Aror (bank of Indus River) and established rule of Umayyad Caliphate in 712. He was executed by the successor Calipha in 715. Chachnama recorded his death by suffocation as he was caught, warped and stitched in oxen hides while sending to the Calipha. Thereafter it was the bloodiest part of 500 years of invasion by the Turk over Indian Subcontinent through the window of Khyber Pass. Muhammad Gazani invaded India for 17 times. Muhammad Ghori lost first battle but won second battle of Tarain against Prithviraj Chauhan by attacking them before dawn and laid the foundation of Muslim Rule in Delhi and ruled over the territory from Afghanistan to Bangladesh and was succeeded by his slaves. India was given to slave Qutbu I-Din Aibak. The Slave Dynasty rule was followed by Tughlaq, Khilji and the last by the Mughals. Allauddin Khilji, Akbar and Aurangzeb extended their power over the larger parts of Indian subcontinent. Area under Aurangzeb’s suzerainty was the biggest. During the invasions and rule of 1000 years, the inhabitants of Indian subcontinent were passed through many atrocities of the rulers and their forces, and in helplessness or understanding or under the force, thousands had changed their faith. With new faith, new customs the community consolidated into a force as the generations passed. In the name of Quran and oppose of idol worship many temples and sculptures created with the workmanship of hundreds of years by Hindu and Buddhist faiths were destroyed. To force conversion or suppression of non Muslim subjects, jizya tax was imposed. The atrocities of the rulers, destruction of temples and sculptures and jizya tax placed permanent mark of distrust and division in the minds and hearts of the Hindus against the Muslims. However, as most of the Muslims in India were Hindus or Buddhist before conversion, therefore, the blood of unity was flowing in thousands of veins. The fight of unity or division was going on all over the subcontinent for centuries. The events of atrocities didn’t allow them to merge like milk and sugar. 

1857 mutiny was fought by Hindu-Muslim together. But Census of India in 1871 first estimated the population of Hindu-Muslim majority areas and created a divide line. Then the seed of partition on religion line was planted by Viceroy Lord Curson on 16/10/1905 by dividing Bengal Presidency into Muslim Majority province of East Bengal and Assam and Hindu Majority province of West Bengal (with present day Bihar, Jharkhand and Orissa). Swadeshi movement with slogan ‘Vande/Bande Mataram’ was started opposing the division of Bengal by the Hindus. That lead Muslim elite to meet the successor Viceroy Lord Minto and asked for separate electorates for Muslims and founded All India Muslim League in Dacca in December 1906. Morley Minto reforms in 1909 accepted the demand of separate electorate for Muslims. To safeguard Hindu interests a Punjab Hindu Sabha was established in Lahore in December 1909 and formally the All India Hindu Mahasabha was established in Haridwar Kumbh Mela on 13/2/1915. Gandhi was also present in the conference. The members of the League and the Mahasabha were the members of the Congress too. Congress was leading the freedom movement of all Indians against the British rule and the two religious organisations were working for safeguarding the interests of their communities. 

East India Company came for trading in India started building Cantonments near the seashore and established suzerainty over them and slowly reading the political division of the country established their direct and indirect rule over the Indian subcontinent. They started shaping India by their model of administration. The Acts of 1773 and 1784 were designed to establish a regular system of administration and justice under the East India Company. The Act of 1833 opened the door for Indians to public office and employment. When the execution of the policy of doctrine of lapse of the EIC by Lord Dalhousie created rebellion of 1857, the Act of 1858 transferred the administration from the Company to the Crown and laid the foundations of public administration on which India exist today. The Act of 1861 sowed the seed of representative institutions, and the seed was quickened into life by the Act of 1909. Separate electorate for Muslims were given in electing representatives to the Imperial and Provincial Councils. 

For combined movement of freedom of India and Hindu-Muslim unity, and to demand together the reforms and home rule; INC (headed by Bal Gangadhar Tilak) signed Lucknow Pact of 1916 with League (headed by Muhammad Ali Jinnah), accepted separate electorates for Muslims, 1/3 seats for the Muslims in the council and also agreed that that no act affecting a community should be passed unless three-quarters of that community's members on the council supported it. Jinnah earn the title of ‘the best Ambassdor of Hindu-Muslim unity’ from Gopal Krishna Gokhale. It was later considered Himalayan blunder, sown the seeds of division of minds. 

The Act of 1919 provided a dual form of government (a diarchy) for the major provinces. The control of some areas (transferred list) of government (agriculture, health, education and supervision of local government) were given to a Government of Ministers answerable to the Provincial Council. The Provincial Councils were enlarged but voting rights were given to the limited people who were paying tax to the government. UPSC was established. Motilal Nehru gave a draft constitution rejecting separate electorates for Muslims (Motilal Nehru Report-1928) created unrest amongst the Muslims and Jinnah, a nationalist felt frustrated. It was U turn of Congress from the agreement of Lucknow Pact. Jinnah demanded 14 points (the major one was demand of 33% representation against the Muslim population of 23%), Simon Commission came in 1929, Three round table conferences were held in London. Jinnah participated in the conferences but settled in England for five years (1930-35) to practice before the Privy Council, might had governed the terms of Communal Award. Gandhi and Congress were expecting dominion status like Canada and Australia but British declared Communal Award with separate electorates for Muslims and Depressed. Gandhi went on fast until death and somehow with the broad minded approach of Dr Ambedkar and with grant of reservations to the depressed, one more division was avoided. The Act of 1935 (commencement from 1/4/1937) was introduced as a step forward towards dominion status, widened the voting rights, formed Provincial Assemblies through direct elections and Central Assemblies through indirect elections. Separate electorates continued for Muslims and depressed were given reservations. Autonomy was introduced but the important reserve powers including suspension of responsible government were wasted with the British Authorities. The Federation of India with Deed of Accession was proposed for the Princely States but was not materialised due to WW-II. Sindh was separated from Bombay, new provinces of Bihar and Orissa were created, and Burma was separated from India. Federal Court was established. They started downsizing of British Bureaucrats and slowdown the process of recruitment of new ICS officers. 

In the elections of 1937, Congress emerged as the largest party in seven of the 11 provinces with a clear majority in five (Madras, UP, Central Province, Bihar, Orissa). The League secured 4.8% of the total Muslim votes (winning 25% of the seats allotted for Muslims) and did not acquire majority in any of the four Muslim predominant provinces (Punjab, Sind, NWF, Bengal). Unionist Party formed the Govt in Punjab and in Bengal, Congress formed coalition Govt. It didn’t include the League in formation Provincial Governments. To regain their importance, Muslim League and Jinnah took U Turn and propagated it as insecurity of Muslim interests and the Muslim way of life in the hands of Hindu majority. All their actions thereafter were for unifying Muslims as “one unified force” leading towards creating independent nation of Pakistan for Muslims. 

On 3rd September 1939, without consulting people’s representatives, the Viceroy Linlithgow announced India at war with Germany. In protest, Congress Ministries resigned from the Provincial Ministries in 1939. Jinnah extended his support to the British in war time and celebrated 22 December 1939 as “Day of Deliverance” from Congress. League was the happiest party passed Lahore resolution in March 1940, calling for an independent Muslim Nation carved out of British India. Viceroy Linlithgow made August Offer on 8/8/1940 to include more Indians in Viceroy Executive Council. Governors ran the administration during the war time. British Indian army was dominated by Muslims and Sikhs. Gandhi declared Jawaharlal Nehru as his successor on 15/1/1942. On 22/7/1941, Viceroy Executive Council was expanded to 12 members and again on 2/7/1942, in the enlarged Council of 15 members, Dr Ambedkar was inducted as Member Labour. 

The demand for Pakstan (land of the Pure) was coined in 1933 referring to the names of the five northern regions of British India: Punjab, Afghania (NWFP), Kashmir, Sindh and Baluchistan. Bengal and East were not in demand. But after losing provincial elections of 1937, and premature registrations from Provincial Governments by Congress, League moved for ‘Lahore Resolution’ in March 1940 and demanded: “That geographically contiguous units are demarcated regions which should be constituted, with such territorial readjustments as may be necessary that the areas in which the Muslims are numerically in a majority as in the North Western and Eastern Zones of (British) India should be grouped to constitute ‘independent states’ in which the constituent units should be autonomous and sovereign.” It was a demand of autonomous and sovereign States of Muslim Majority areas within the umbrella of India. 

In their difficult time of war, INC launched Quit India movement on 8/8/1942 and had annoyed the British authorities.  British Authorities put all the INC major leaders in Jail.  C Ragopalachari proposed resolution in INC supporting the proposal of Pakistan, was opposed and had resigned from Congress. He didn’t participate in Quit india movement. Gandhi was placed in Agakhan Palace Pune, where he lost his two manoj companions: Mahadev Desai (15/8/42) and Kasturba (22/2/44). Nehru, Sardar Patel, Dr Rajendra Prasad, Maulana Azad were placed in Ahmednagar Fort. British utilised the vacuum in promoting Jinnah and Muslim League. Nehru and Sardar Patel were in jail away from the mainstream politics for three years (1942-45). Viceroy Linlithgow retired in 1943, was replaced by Lord Wavell. He had four challenges: Bengal famine of 1943, Quit India Movement of Gandhi, Jinnah’s demand for independent state for the Muslims and Subhas Chandra Bose befriended with Japan was knocking doors of India from India’s eastern border. 

On medical grounds, Gandhi was released before the expiry of imprisonment on 5/5/1944. Gandhi held the talk with Jinnah 9-10 September 1944 to break the deadlock and proposed CR Formula of partition deferring it till after partition.  Their correspondence on 11-14, 24-26 September 1944 didn’t resolve the issue. Jinnah remained firm on his demand of new Country of six provinces resolved by Muslim League in 1940 before the British departure. Gandhi wanted Independence first and Jinnah wanted settlement of communal problem first and thereafter independence. 

Little Boy and Fat Man nuclear bombs were dropped over Hiroshima and Nagasaki cities of Japan by USA on 6th and 8th of August 1945. Japan surrendered on 15 August 1945. The Allies won over the Axis. but the victorious PM of UK Sir Winston Churchill lost the Parliament Elections of July 1945. UK suffered heavy loss of human life (449,700) and financial resources ($120 billion) in WW-II. 

In June 1945, all members of Congress Working Committee were released from the Jain. In Shimla Conference of 25 June 1945, Viceroy Lord Wavell offered Wavell Pan for India’s Self Government (dominion status), all members excluding the Viceroy and Commander in Chief (defence) would be Indian. But he offered the seats on religion and caste lines. Jinnah wanted Muslim members of the council proposed by the league, as he believed League’s sole right to representative of Muslims of India. He considered Congress’s Muslim representatives as ‘show boys’. Jinnah rejected the plan by calling it a trap of the Government and the Hindus and a death warrant of the Muslims. Wavell Plan failed. Meanwhile, general elections were held in UK in July 1945, Churchill’s Conservative Party lost and Labour Party came in power.

British exploited India in terms of food, timber, raw materials and soldiers but on budget records, Indian was a debtor country to UK. Under the new PM of Labour Party, Clement Attlee British decided to Quit India in 1946. He sent a Cabinet Mission to India. The Cabinet Mission Plan (Lord Pethick Lawrence, Sir Stafford Cripps and AV Alexander) tried to transfer the power with an aim of maintaining India’s unity by formation of Union of India comprising both the British India and the Princely States but failed. 

On 16/5/1946, the Cabinet Mission proposed three tier system: the provinces, provincial groupings and the centre. The centre's power was to be confined to foreign affairs, defence, currency and communications. The provinces would keep all the other powers and were allowed to establish three groups. Two groups would be constituted by the mainly Muslim western and eastern provinces. Group B would comprise Sind, Punjab, Northwest Frontier and Baluchistan. Bengal and Assam would make up Group C. The third Group A would comprise the mostly Hindu areas in the south and the centre, such as UP, CP, Bombay, Bihar and Madras. The Union would remain in charge of only foreign affairs, defence and communications leaving the residuary powers to be vested in the provinces. A proposal was envisaged for setting up an Interim Government, which would remain in office till a new government was elected on the basis of the new Constitution framed by the Constituent Assembly.

Jinnah was demanding parity between the two: Muslim India (group B&C) and Hindu India (group A). Muslim League accepted the proposal on 6/6/1946. Provincial Elections of Assemblies were held in January 1946. Separate electorates gave 90% of seats for Muslim to Muslim League in 1946 elections. INC won 90% of non-Muslim seats. Elections were held for the Constituent Assembly in July 1946. The members were elected by the provincial assemblies by a single, transferable vote system of proportional representation. Constituent Assembly was founded on 6/7/1946.

INC initially accepted the Cabinet Mission Plan of 16/5/1946, but had raised queries on interpretation of some of its provisions. The major one was regarding Assam. It had Congress rule and it was believed that it will be optional for Assam to join group C or not. Jinnah saw it mandatory. Weak Centre was not acceptable to Nehru, therefore, he held a Press Conference in Mumbai on 10/7/1946 declaring that although the Congress had agreed to participate in the Constituent Assembly, it reserved the right to modify the Cabinet Mission Plan as it saw fit. That created doubts in the minds of Muslim League that had withdrawn their approval of the Cabinet Plan on 29/7/1946. Jinnah declared Direct Action Day on 16/8/1946 with an aim of divided India or destroyed India to make his demand for Pakistan. On that day Great Culcutta killings took place, followed by riots in Noakhali, Bihar, United Provinces (UP), Punjab and North Western Frontier province. Master Tara Singh’s kirpan calling for “Death of Pakistan” outside the Punjab Assembly on 3/3/1947 turned out to be the death warrant of thousands of innocents in Punjab in communal violences. 

Meantime, Viceroy Wavell moves for forming the interim Government. Nehru’s Cabinet was installed on 2/9/1946. Nehru became the Vice President of Executive Council, Home Ministry was kept with Sardar Patel, Jinnah didn’t join but placed Liaquat Ali Khan on 29/10/1946 to hold Finance Ministry. Two more ministers of Muslim League were inducted. But during those 9 months of government (29/10/1946 to 15/8/1947) Liaquat Ali Khan as Finance Minister made the functioning of the Single Govt of United India difficult. In December 1946, Nehru, Jinnah and Wavell went to London to revive the Cabinet Mission scheme but the attempt failed. Wavell commenced Constituent Assembly on 9/12/1946. Muslim League joined the government but boycotted the Constituent Assembly. Wavell drew up a plan for gradual exit of British but he was replaced by Lord Mountbatten on 20 February 1947 with an aim to  overseeing transition of British India to Independence, no later than 30 June 1948. He preferred quick transfer instead of gradual transfer to avoid civil was as per his belief. He was comfortable with Gandhi, Nehru and Sardar Patel but couldn’t persuade Jinnah for united India. In his words, “if it could be said that any single man held the future of India in the palm of his hand in 1947, that man was Mohammad Ali Jinnah." He then concluded to form independent nations of India and Pakistan, declared 3rd June Plan (Mountbatten Plan) and brought the date forward for transfer of power on 15/8/1947, 10.5 months before the deadline of 30/6/1948. India Independence Act 1947 was enacted on 18 July 1947. Jinnah failed in getting whole of Punjab and Bengal and Assam. The division of these provinces and uncertainty of the borders causes migration of people to move towards their majority area. Boundary Committee chaired by Sir Cyril Radcliffe mandated to draw boundaries to leave as many Hindus and Sikhs in India and as many Muslims in Pakistan as possible. Punjab and Bengal were divided. He submitted his map on 9/8/1947 and the new boundaries were formally announced on 14/8/1947. This left 14 million people on the "wrong" side of the border, and very many of them fled to "safety" on the other side when the new lines were announced. High scale rioting and violence broke out in Punjab. One man army Gandhi was holding Bengal for maintaining peace. Thousands were killed and millions were injured. The number of humans saved by Gandhi’s non violent freedom movement were sacrificed in the fire of communal violence. Migration made the innocent people refugees. After a month of independence, both the Govt signed the agreement of exchange of minorities from east and west Punjab. Central Emergency Committee was formed under the chair of Mountbatten to deal with the rescue, relief and rehabilitation of the refugees. 

On eastern border communal violence broke out in Noakhali and Kolkata but one man army Gandhi was holding them in peace. Gandhi returned to Delhi in September 1947 and wished to go to Punjab to bring peace but had to stop in Delhi because of communal violence broke out in the city. Gandhi went on fast on 13/1/1948 for communal peace. ₹ 55 crore payment to Pakistan was included in the list of demands. The Cabinet changed it earlier decision and passed the payment on 14/1/1948, though Sardar Patel’s will was against the decision. Gandhi continued his fast to bring peace in Delhi and ended the fast on 18/1/1948 after being given a pledge of harmony by leaders of different communities. A bomb was thrown on him on 20/1/1948 but was saved. Sardar Patel was in Mumbai that day, returned to Delhi on 23/1/1948, made arrangements of his protection. But Gandhi didn’t allow checking of visitors. On 30/1/48, Gandhi was assassinated. 

Sindhi Hindu migration from Sindh to India had low scale rioting but at Dargah Bazzar of Ajmer the arguments between Sindhi refugees and local Muslims on 6/12/1947 lead into riots, sparkled riots in Karachi, Hyderabad of Pakistan. It had forced the Sindhis of Karachi to migrate to Gujarat-Godhra where riots took place in March 1948, that led to emigration of Godhra Muslims to Pakistan. Nehru planned to go to Ajmer to review the ground reality but due to death of his nephew had sent his personal secretary Ayangar in December 1947. The Chief Commissioner of Ajmer Shankar Prasad objected to the review by MR Ayangar and complained to Sardar Patel. Sardar Patel too felt bad and that led into no-confidence correspondences between Nehru and Sardar. However, Gandhi’s assassination on 30/1/1948 bonded them together again. Riots and refugees had created the stress over the governments and their executives.

When Maulana Abdul Kalam expressed his concern over the likelihood of violent riots due to partition of India, Lord Mountbatten gave assurance that there would no bloodshed or riots and if there should be the slightest agitation, he should adopt the sternest measures to nip the trouble in the bud. He couldn’t meet his assurance. Government machinery failed. 

British came to India for trading but ruled and governed the country for 190 years and formed bigger India under central power, gave us organised administration and slowly brought the country under the democratic system of governance, whereby the revolutionary changes in economic and social life are brought about without bloodshed. But their departure took a toll on lives of thousands and displacement of millions. 

The failure of leaders in managing those three months of 16/5/1946 to 16/8/47 brought miseries and placed permanent wet scars over the hearts of millions to remind the darkness of those days for centuries. 

9 February 2019


Manu-Manilarnika became Laxmibai after her marriage with the King of Jhansi Gangadhar Rao. She fought for her right over the throne of Jhansi. Her husband signed the doctrine of lapse, the policy introduced by the East India Company and widely executed by Lord Dalhousie. It was a major cause to ignite the fire of rebellion. Laxmibai’s real son died in infancy and the adopted son was not accepted by the EIC. There was a dispute of interpretation of the agreement that was obviously decided by the London Court in favour of the EIC. She was granted privy purse of ₹60000/annum but had to leave the palace and fort of Jhansi. [GoI Act of 1935 had provision of deed of accession to make Union of India, that was implemented by Sardar Patel (with VP Menon and Lord Mountbatten) after the GOI Act of 1947, by giving good amount of privy purse and right over their palace-land-Jwelleries-properties, and a place of “Rajpramukh” like Governor of the Province to the bigger players for building united India. Later, they all merge with the union with the merger deed]

What is important to note that she was a Brahmin Girl, married at the age of 14 to a 46 years old King of Jhansi Gangadhar Rao, who was very weak and died in 1853 at the age of 56Y. Laxmibai became widow at 24 but the brave lady fought for her right. Her appeal in London Court, after losing it, quitting the fort and palace, organising and preparing the villagers including the women and building the strength of weapons to fight for home rule and when EIC Officers were busy in managing the Mutiny of 1857, taking over the possession of the palace and the fort was a great great courageous act.

When British forces entered Jhansi on 4/4/1858 and massacre the civilian population, she used presence of mind, jumped from a good height of the palace-fort using her horse Badal (eventually the horse died) and managed the great escape by traveling 151 kms on horse and reached to the camp of Tatya Tope at Kalpi. Jhalkari Bai (the Kori lady) gave her a great cover and fought the war as her duplicate keeping the British force busy in confusion of her as Rani. She sacrificed her life for her queen so that British couldn’t chase Laxmibai.

Laxmibai then took over Gwalior fort without much of an oppose but in that hostile palace of Sindhia, instead of waiting inside, she took a decision to move out of the fort to fight out with British, but was encountered by the forces of the Hugh Rose and was killed at the dead end of the street of Gwalior on 14/6/1858. She couldn’t manage the escape like Jhansi because there was no cover of Jhalkaribai !

She was only 29 when was killed. Her acts of bravery for those 4 years (1953-58) after the death of her husband and the last part of her life of 71 days fighting war of Jhansi, great escape, capturing Gwalior and sacrificing her life in a battle field for her right, gave her an immortal place in the history of India, made her an inspiration of bravery and love for the motherland. Rani Laxmibai is immortal.

Hugh Rose, the EIC Major General who fought wars of Jhansi and Gwalior against Rani, commented that Rani Lakshmibai is "personable, clever and beautiful" and she is "the most dangerous of all Indian leaders". Colonel Malleson wrote in the History of the Indian Mutiny; vol. 3; London, 1878 'Whatever her faults in British eyes may have been, her countrymen will ever remember that she was driven by ill-treatment into rebellion, and that she lived and died for her country, We cannot forget her contribution for India.'

खूब लड़ी मर्दानी वह तो झाँसी वाली रानी थी।

Our salutes to the Rani🙏

8 February 2019

Friday, January 25, 2019

Jai Somnath

Jai Somnath

Prabhash Patan is the place at the confluence of three holy rivers (Hiran, Kapila and Sarasvati) flowing into the Arabian Sea, where the Yadavas had killed themselves in infightings. Gandhari’s curse acted upon. Only few Yadavas including Lord Shri Krishna, his elder brother Balram, his grandson Vajra survived. After the ruin of Yadavas, Lord Krishna when was reclining under a Pepal tree at Bhalakatirth, was struck by an arrow shot by a hunter Jara who had mistaken him a deer. Krishna walked down to the confluence of the three rivers and breathed his last in a cave. His body was cremated at the confluence at Prabhas Patan. Subhadra, his sister couldn’t tolerate the shock of his death, threw herself into the pyre. Balaram too died. It was raining very heavily and the sea was in high tides, therefore, the cremation couldn’t complete. Krishna’s corpse was flooded out into the sea and was found out by some Hathyogi Sadhus at Puri. They used it as Akshay Patra and when found it miraculous, placed it and built a temple at Jagannath Puri in Orissa, which is a place of Hindu pilgrimage for centuries. Krishna, Subhadra and Balram died together at Prabhas Patan and are worshipped together at Jagannath Puri. It’s kitchen is the largest in the world, cooking 56 types of Bhoga-Prasada in earthen pots everyday. Dehotsarga of Prabhas Patan and Jagannath Puri are therefore linked by the story of Lord Krishna. 

At this Prabhas Patan, there was a temple of Lord Shiva, the God of Moon, who had relieved Moon from the curse of waning given by his father in law Daksha for loving more to Rohini. The first temple was made of Gold by the Soma and the second was made of Silver by Lord Krishna but except the folklores, no historical evidences had supported the temples made of Gold and Silver. 

Abi Raihan Al-Biruni, who accompanied Sultan Mahmud to India in 1025-26 had quoted the legend of Somnath. Somnath was set up on the sea coast in such a way that the sea water, when high, would cover it at times. He had mentioned the fortress and the treasure not ancient but only 100 years old. It was a temple of large blocks of stone on the sea shore in a such a way that its walls were washed by the waves and the idol remained under water at appointed hours. It was a large edifice, the roof of which was carried on 56 well ornamented columns of teak wood. Out of these, six columns, highly studded with emeralds, rubies and other predacious stones. Other writers had mentioned that it had a pyramidal roof, thirteen storeys high, the top of which was surmounted by fourteen spherical knobs of Gold which glittered in the Sun and were visible from the long distance. It had 10000 villages for maintenance, had 1000 Brahmins to perform rituals, 300 musicians and dancing girls and 300 barbers to shave the pilgrims. The idol was the Linga of Shiva made of solid stone, had thirty rings round it, seven cubits in height, of which two (the Brahma part) were buried in the basement, and about three cubits (the Vishnu part of the Linga covered with Yoni-Jaladhari round) and the the upper round part (of Shiva) in girth. Some Muslim writers equalised the idol of Somnath with the idol of Manat (three Chief Goddesses of Mecca with Lion as their vehicle!) as was worshipped by the Arabs at Mecca before Islam. The story of idol of Manat secretly been transferred to Somnath temple might had inspired Mahmud to attack on the temple. 

According to Ali-ibn-Athir, the historian of Mahmud, he started from Gazani on 18/10/1025, left Multan on 26/11/1025, crossed the Thar Desert and reached Patan in December 1025. The King Bhima-1 fled and took shelter at Kanthkot (Bhachau-Kutch). Mahmud then moved to Modhera and on 6/1/1026 he reached Somnath. The temple was protected for two days but finally on 8/1/1026, Mahmud captured it. He desecrated the temple, burnt to ground and took away jewels, gold and silver ornaments of the temple. 

It was his 17th invasion over India, Mahmud of Gazani (Yamin-ud-Daula Abdul Quasim Mahmud ibn Sebuktegin), attacked the temple of Somnath, destroyed it’s Linga and other idols and put the building under fire, took away booty and returned after a fortnight stay when he Parmar King Bhoja (1010-1055) of Malava gathered a huge army to fight him, to avoid confrontation and save the booty of the loot, he took a safe route of Kutch- Sindh to return but suffered very heavy casualties during the retreat. 

It is not true that he was a small looter of an unknown village of Afghanistan which had no mark in the history. Gazanavi is a province of Afghanistan and he very bravely, not only capture the seat of power of Gazanavi but had conquered eastern Iran, Afghanistan and annexed Sindh and Punjab and became Sultan of Gaznavid Empire. He invaded India 17 times and defeated the kingdoms of Shahis of Kabul and Lahore, Saffraids of Sistan, Ismailis of Multan, Sukhpala of Bhatinda, Nagarkot, Thanesar, Kashmir, Mathura, Kannauj, Kalinjar, Gwalior, Doab, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Jud. In India, 2% of the population had a right to interpret the law (religion) and 4 % had a right to hold the swords for protection, therefore, the common people were mere spectators during the foreign invasions. However, the tribes came from Greece, Persia, Central Asia, Afghanistan and Pakistan settled over the land of Western India, were identified as semi Kshatriya did fight against the attacks but smaller in number they were defeated. 

Somnath was under the rule of Chalukya (Solanki) King Bhima-I (1022-1064) (grand father of Siddhraj Jaisingh) when Mahmud invaded. He was a powerful king of Gujarat (Anhilvad Patan) extended his Kingdom to present day Gujarat, Saurastra and Marvar. But he was a Vasaal of Malva King Bhoja Parmar. Punjab and Sindh were under the rule of Mahmud Gazanavi. Mahmud was using the fort of Bhatinda as his transit camp while invading India. When the population was scarce, it was easier for him to travel and invade over the the western India. King Bhimdev of Patan (Anhilvad) fled to Kanthkot (Bhachau-Kutch) when Mahmud attacked Patan and Somnath in 1025-26. 

Surprisingly, Hindu sources don’t give any information of the invasion over Somnath by Mahmud Gazni. Once a ruler was declared Sultan by the Calipha, it was mandated for him to destroy idols and temples of the kafirs. It might had been a small event of looting the temple but to receive grandiose titles from the Calipha, he might had exaggerated the size, wealth and religious importance of Somnath. Traditionally, buildings in this part of the land were built with stone base plinth and erected over the wooden columns and beams. Therefore, the description of the temple erected over the 56 columns of teak wood might be correct because the wood structure only could be burnt to ground. 

The first temple at the spot was built in 1st-2nd Century probably by the Lakulisa, the founder of Pasupata cult. The second temple was built of Kanjur stones by the Yadava Kings of Vallabhi around 649. It was said to be destroyed by the Arab Governor of Sindh in 725. The third temple of red stone was built by Gurjar Pratihar King Nagbhatt-II in 815. It was rebuilt-renovated by Chalukya King Mularaj Solanki around 997, that was demolished by Mahmud Gazani in 1026. It was largely a wooden structure over the stone plinth. 

He was Ganda (title) Bhava Brahapati, a Brahmin from Varanasi (Kashi) of Kanyakubja (Kannauj) came from Malava, proposed before the Gujarat King Jaisingh Siddhraj (1092-1142) for rebuilding of Somnath temple, but the King died, therefore, he proposed before the successor King Kumarpala (1143-1172) and with his help, help of Parmar King Bhoja and with the help of the rich ministers and traders, he and his four sons rebuilt the fourth temple of Somanath with large stones in 1169 AD (Vallabhi Samvat 850). It was rebuilt by the support of Soma (the sculptor whose descendants are called Sompura). The inscription mentioned that the building was destroyed by the bad ministers of the Kings. There was no mention of it’s destruction of the temple by Mahmud Gazani. The work of reconstruction was initiated during the visit of Gujarat King Siddhraj Jaisingh to Prabhas Patan but was completed during the rule of King Kumarpala. 

Siddhraj Jaisingh had removed the pilgrimage tax. When Siddhraj Jaisingh won Malva, he desired to have pride of Sanskrit seat of literature in Patan like King Bhoja’s seat of literature in Malva. Acharya Hemchandra wrote the grammar of Sanskrit and Prakrit similar to the grammar of King Bhoja. The Siddh Hema Shabdanushashan was his great work covering six Prakrit languages and was a precursor of Gujarati language. He had composed 3.5 crore verses. The successor King Kumarpala was a Shaiv but under the influence of Acharya Hemchandra, moved towards Jainism. When Acharya Hemachandra went to the inauguration function of the temple with the King Kumarpala, to removed the doubts that he didn’t respect Hindu Gods, he bowed before the Lingam and chanted the verse: Bhava Bijankaura-janana Ragadyam Kshayamupagata Yasya, Brahma va Vishnu va Haro Jino va Namastasmai. (I bow down to him who has destroyed the passions like attachment and malice which are the cause of the cycle of birth and death; whether he is Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva or Jina).

On the plinth of the fourth temple, the fifth temple was erected and expanded during the rule of King Bhima-II (1206 AD). It was destroyed by Alaf Khan, the general of Alka-ud-din-Khilji in 1299. Karna Vaghela was the King of Gujarat and his Minister Madhav (a Nagar Brahmin) invited Alla-ud-din Khilji to Gujarat to take revenge on King Karna, who enamoured of his brother’s wife and had killed the husband and appropriated the wife. The 6th temple was repaired-rebuilt by Mahipala the Chudasama King of Junagadh in 1308 and the lingam was installed by his son Ra’ Khengar. The independent Sultan of Gujarat Zaffarkhan built a mosque in the temple in 1393. The temple was converted into a mosque by Gujarat Sultan Mahmud Begada (Fatehkhan) who conquered Junagadh with the help of Jadejas of Kutch. The Chudasama King Ra’Mandlik (of Narsinh Mehta time) embraced Islam, the linga was removed from the temple and it was converted into a mosque in 1469. In 1669, Aurangzeb issued the farman to destroy the temple, but that might had not been carried out. Again in 1701, Aurangzeb ordered the governor of Gujarat Prince Azam to destroy the temple beyond possibility of repairs. After the destruction of the temple in 1706, Mughal power was at decline and Hindu power rose by Shivaji knocked the doors of Saurastra with the victorious shouts of Har Har Mahadev. Marathas continued raids over Gujarat. Sher Khan Babi was the Deputy Governor of Mughal Empire at Junagadh.  Ahmedabad was won by Marathas in 1753 and 1759, but in the meantime, East India Company emerged as great political power. Somnath temple went into the commands of Babi Nawabs under the suzerainty of the Gaekvad of Baroda. The right to control and manage the  Somnath Temple was vested in the Gaekwad. Ahalya Bai Holkar built a new temple in the campus and the linga was placed in a secret underground shrine in 1783. Mahadji Sinde brought back the silver gates of the temple from Muhammad Shah of Lahore after defeating him in 1782-83, but when was not allowed to put them back, they were placed in the Mahakaleshwar Temple of Ujjain. Later in the year 1820, when the suzerainty over Saurastra was transferred to the British, the Nawabs became active to impose tax (Chille) and restrictions over the pilgrims of the shrine. Baroda state objected to it but the British authorities sided with the Nawab. 

When India became independent on 15/8/1947, the Nawab of Junagadh Muhammad Mahabat Khan -III, after execution of the instrument of accession, acceding Junagadh to the Dominion of Pakistan on 15/9/1947, ran away to Pakistan on the day of Dashera 24/10/1947. Junagadh was then acceded to India through Arazi Hakumat agitation and police action. The Diwan of Junagadh Shah Nawaz Bhutto wrote to the Regional Commissioner Rajkot to give assistance to preserve law and order on 7/11/1947, army entered and Junagadh was acceded to India on 9/11/1947. The accession was approved by the referendum of the people of Junagadh on 24/2/1948. 

Sardar Patel went to Junagadh on Diwali day on 12/11/1947, and next day on the new year day of Vikram Samvat 2004, he visited Somnath along with Jam Saheb and K.M. Munshi and gave consent to rebuild the temple. K.M. Munshi, then in the presence of 500 people announced the decision of the GoI to rebuild the temple. Jam Saheb announced the donation of ₹1 lakh. Shamaldas Gandhi of Junagadh administration declared ₹51000. Sardar Patel then addressed the public meeting in Ahalya Bai Temple and declared the reconstruction of Somnath temple. 
Govt of India approved the project but following a suggestion of Gandhiji to keep the Govt treasury away for making any religious buildings, the Trust was formed in October 1949. With the first donation or ₹1 lakh by the Jam Saheb, about ₹25 lakh collected by December 1949. The Trust Deed was approved on 15/3/1950. Jam Saheb laid the foundation stone of the 7th Temple of Somnath on 8/5/1950. The old temple was pulled down on 19/10/1950. The pranpratishtha of Shivlinga (installed from the top) was performed by the first President of India Dr Rajendra Prasad on 11/5/1951. The garbhagriha of the temple was completed in 1957, the Sabha Mandapa was completed in 1970 and finally the Nritya Mandap was completed in 1995 and the temple was dedicated to the nation by the then President Shankar Dayal Sharma on 1/12/1995. 

Today, the Temple has regained it’s glory, where millions of pilgrims are coming everyday and praying the Jyotirlinga, Lord Shiva. The Trust is slowly covering the stone temple with gold plates to protect it from the sea winds and also to showcase the great glory of Lord Shiva and Hinduism. 

Har Har Mahadev.

Jai Somnath

25 January 2019

1. K.M. Munshi, Somnath, The Shrine Eternal, Shree Somnath Trust (1951)
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