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During his visit to the UK in 2004, on 6 September, His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj consecrated the abhishek murti of Nilkanth Varni – the teenage form of Bhagwan Swaminarayan – at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London. After performing the very first abhishek (ritual bathing) of the sacred image, he prayed for the well-being of those who come to perform the abhishek of Nilkanth Varni.
Exactly ten years on, on Saturday 6 September 2014, the decennial anniversary of the murti’s consecration was celebrated in the presence of senior sadhu Bhaktipriya Swami (Kothari Swami) at the Mandir.
The celebrations began with a mahapuja to mark this auspicious occasion and for the continued good health of His Holiness, as well as for peace to prevail throughout the world. Thereafter, Kothari Swami and sadhus performed Vedic rituals in the Nilkanth Varni Abhishek Mandap.
To commemorate this historic milestone, a grand celebration was held during the evening assembly. Following devotional singing, a series of dramas and speeches highlighted the epic journey of Nilkanth Varni across the length and breadth of India to enlighten and redeem countless souls.
A video presentation brought back fond memories of Pramukh Swami Maharaj consecrating the murti of Shri Nilkanth Varni Maharaj in London in 2004. Several real-life incidents were then shared which shed light upon the countless wishes and prayers which have been fulfilled by Shri Nilkanth Varni over the past ten years.
The celebrations continued with a beautifully choreographed and vibrant dance before Kothari Swami addressed the assembly, elaborating further upon the principles that Nilkanth Varni established along his travels and their continuation through the work of Pramukh Swami Maharaj today.