The foundation stone was laid on monday in Leicester
of the Shree Jalaram Prarthana Mandal, a temple due to be completed
by March 1995 and expected to become a place of worship for pilgrims
from all over the world.
Present at the Bhumi Pujan and Foundation stone laying ceremony performed
by Mrs. Lalitaben Thakkar, wife of patron and founder president, the
late Mr. Shantilal Rughnath Thakkar - were Bhagwatacharya Shree Krishna
Shankar Shastri, a renowned Gita scholar who blessed and participated
in the foundation laying ceremony, Mahant Shree Dwarkesh Bava, Shree
Ram Ram, Shree Bhagwat Bhai, Pujya Maha Mangleshwar Swami Arjun Puri
and other distinguished visitors from india. The occasion was also graced
by Leicester East MP Keith Vaz, the Rev Michael Ipgrave representing
the Bishop of Leicester and the leaders of various local religious groups.
This large project has blossomed from the small seeds of a group of
Leicester ladies who used to meet for prayers in the late 70's inspired
by their devotion to Saint Shree Jalaram Bapa, a much loved saint born
150 years ago in Virpur, India.
As the number of devotees grew, the late Mr. Shantilal R. Thakkar organised
the purchase - with the assistance of the Gheewala family and other
devotees - of a property in Mere Road, Leicester, in 1979. By 1989 Mr.
S. R. Thakkar, again relying on the generosity of the devotees plus
some loan finance, found it neccessary to acquire and refurbish a larger
property at 85 Narborough Road, Gateway to Leicester - the site of the
temple now under construction - to accommodate the growing congregation
and devotees of Pujya Bapa.
Charitable Trust status has been obtained and the temple donates annually
between £15,000 to £20,000 towards various UK and overseas
After the sad demise of Mr. S. R. Thakkar in 1991, Mr. Thakershibhai
Morjaria was elected president and continues to serve diligently with
the assistance of the committee.
Under the chairmanship of Mr. Pramod Shantilal R. Thakkar, Son of the
late Mr. Shantilal R. Thakkar, and Mr. Bhadrasil Trivedi, vice chairman
, a building committee is overseeing the creation of a purpose built
temple with classical appeal. The toal cost is expected to be in excess
of £900,000 most of the funds coming from devotee donations and
loan finance. City Challange has granted £80,000 towards building
the community hall on the ground floor which will be purposeful hall
for the elderly and young devotees
and Office Bearers
Jalaram Prarthana Mandal, Leicester, UK.
Laying the foundation stone.
Shri Krishnashankar Shastri,
Smt. Lalitaben Thakkar,
Shri Pramodbhai Thakkar.
Leicester East MP Keith Vaz,
Smt. Lalitaben Thakkar, Madhubhai
Gheewala, Pramodbhai Thakkar,
(Trustees) Foundation Laying Ceremony.
Photograph of new Temple is being
shown to all devotees.
A Cheque Of £5001 is being given
to President for Temple by smt.
Lalitaben Thakkar thru Shri Krishnashankar
Welcoming Saints: Thakersibhai,
Shri Bhagwatbhai, Pramodbhai and
Vajubhai Lakhani, Swami Arjunpuriji,
Shri Krishnashankar Shastri, Dwarkeshbaw