Hindu temple opens in Islamic UAE

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The much-anticipated Hindu temple of Dubai has officially opened its doors in Jebal Ali Worship Village, which houses nine religious shrines, including seven Churches, one Gurudwara and the new Temple.

Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance and Coexistence, Sunjay Sudhir, Indian Ambassador to the UAE, Dr Omar Al-Muthanna, CEO of CDA and Raju Shroff, trustee of the Hindu Temple Dubai, officially welcomed devotees to the 70,000 square foot premises by monumentally lighting a lantern together to celebrate the opening. Over 200 dignitaries, ambassadors and local community leaders attended the celebration.

Raju Shroff said, “Despite Covid-19, construction timelines were not hampered because of the support of the Dubai government. The Hindu Temple Dubai is truly a remarkable icon of how receptive and compassionate the Dubai government is. The Emirati generosity remains. Whether it was in 1958 to launch the first mandir in the country to the Hindu Temple now – we are grateful to be in Dubai.”

The Indian diaspora has played a significant role in the success of the UAE, since they first came to shore in the 1920s. They have been brave pioneers, forging business and cultural ties that bind the social fabric of Dubai since 1958. Back then, community leaders such as Vashu Shroff and his family founded the first Indian Temple, finding its humble beginnings in one room. It was a home that welcomed the diaspora at large to come to find peace when they needed it and at the crossroads of modernity and tradition to ensure the preservation of our beliefs that would be meaningful for the future generation.

Mirroring this expansion, the Indian community saw an astronomical increase in our population from roughly 6000 in 1958 to the 3.3 million people that call it home today. This meteoric rise also breathed new life into every aspect of the economy, from business to tourism making Indians an immensely influential demographic in the region. With over 30,000 businesses ranging from small to medium and even multinational, the community assimilated seamlessly. What we are seeing now is a rich tapestry of interlaced traditions and heritage. Today, Dubai is famously known as India’s best city and making it India’s vital hub.

This impetus led to the birth of The Hindu Temple Dubai, an institution inspired, in part, by the legacy of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

The Temple will aim to mirror his visionary approach by laying the foundation for an establishment that will stand the test of time. A space empowered by a simple but moving thought, ‘For the people, by the people’

The Temple is using digital technology to pre-book visits. By the end of the year, there will be a spacious community center where Hindu ceremonies including rituals and prayers can take place including weddings, naming ceremonies and janiyas (thread ceremony), with an option for catering. (IANS)


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