Nepal:11/5/18;Prime Minister Narendra Modi today visited the famed 20th century Janaki temple in this Nepalese town and offered special prayers.
Modi, who arrived here today on a two-day state visit to Nepal, directly went to the Janaki temple, dedicated to the Hindu goddess Sita, from the airport.Nepalese Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli welcomed his Indian counterpart upon his arival at the temple complex.
Modi took part in the Shodasopachara Pooja at the Janaki temple, local media reported. Devotional bhajans of Sita and Ram was played during the 10-minute long prayer performed by Modi at the temple.Shodashopachara worship ceremony with sixteen ritualistic services including tantric mantra recitation is carried out only by special guests at the Janaki temple. During the ritual, the idol of Hindu Goddess Sita is worshipped and decorated with clothes and jewelsFormer Indian Presidents Neelam Sanjiva Reddy, Gyani Zail Singh and Pranab Mukherjee had peromed such prayers during their visits to Nepal, temple’s priest Ramatpeshwar Das Vaishnav said.
Modi is the first Indian Prime Minister to hold such a worship ceremony at the temple.
“My long-cherished wish to visit Janakpur dham has come true. It is a memorable experience for me to visit this pilgrimage site which holds a special place in the hearts of people from Nepal and India,” Modi wrote in the visitor’s book at the Janaki temple.
He thanked the Nepal government and the people of Janakpur for their warm welcome and wished them peace, prosperity and happiness.
Thousands of people had gathered in the Janaki temple premises to welcome Modi. Janaki temple got a new look as the temple was cleaned up and decorated with lights.
Janakpur is known as the birth place of Sita, the wife of Lord Rama. Janaki temple was built in memory of Sita in 1910. The three-storied structure made entirely of stone and marble is 50-metre high and spread over 4860 sq feet.
Earlier, Defence Minister Ishwar Pokhrel and Province 2 Chief Minister Lalbabu Raut received Prime Minister Modi at the airport upon his arrival.
This is the third visit of Prime Minister Modi to Nepal and the first high-level visit from India since the formation of the new Government in Nepal this year.
Ahead of his visit, Modi said India would remain a steadfast partner of the Himalayan nation in its quest for growth and development.
Describing his trip to Nepal as a reflection of his government’s commitment to “neighbourhood first” policy, Modi had said the Himalayan nation has entered a new era and India would continue to support it.