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Amit Shah Inaugurates Maa Sharda Devi Temple Near LoC In Jammu And Kashmir

Zee News 23-03-2023 Aditi Sharma

© Provided by Zee News

Srinagar: Union Home Minister Amit Shah virtually inaugurated the Maa Sharda Devi Temple on Wednesday (March 22) and promised to try to get the Sharda Peeth pilgrimage open like the Kartarpur corridor. After a gap of 76 years, the Sharda Yatra base temple began glittering again with the sound of holy bells and religious chants of devotees at LoC on the banks of the Kishen Ganga river in North Kashmir.

Creating a history of sorts, the idol of Goddess Sharda was also placed on the sanctum in the newly constructed Sharda temple in the Teetwal area of the Kupwara district on the auspicious occasion of the first Navratra.

Amit Shah virtually inaugurated the temple, along with J&K LG Manoj Sinha where he said he would try for a Kartarpur-style corridor to the original temple in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.

Amit Shah promises a Kartarpur-style corridor for Sharda yatra

Amit Shah told the gathering, "Ravinder Pandita (head of Save Sharda committee) has asked for a Kartarpur-style corridor for Sharda yatra, the government of India will surely make attempts in this direction, there is no doubt in that."

He said, “I congratulate the whole team for their struggle for this temple. Shardha Peeth was a source of knowledge. People used to come here from all over the country,". 

Idol installed in J&K's Maa Sharda Devi Temple

The temple has been built by Kashmir’s Save Sharda Samiti and the Shri Shringeri Math to revive the Shardha pilgrimage, which stopped after 1948 as the original temple fell under Pakistan-occupied Kashmir in Sharda village along the Neelum River. Teetwal, where a temple has been built now, was the historic base camp for devotees who would go to Goddess Sharda's shrine before partition.

The idol was installed on the sanctum Sanctorum with the chanting of Vedic hymns by renowned scholars and Pandits who have reached Teetwal from Shingeri Math in Karnataka where the Murti of Goddess was brought.

Teetwal temple of Goddess was the base camp for world famous Sharda Peeth University prior to the partition between India-Pakistan. The temple at Teetwal which was the base camp for the holy yatra of Mata Sharda and a Gurdwara which was existing nearby the temple on the bank of Krishan Ganga river was set ablaze by raiders in 1947.

The land, where this temple has been built, was taken with the support of locals as it used to have dharmshala and a Sikh gurdwara. Local Muslims of the area welcomed the idol and burst firecrackers and were seen hugging people accompanying the idol in Teetwal close to the LoC with Pakistan. 

Dozens of devotees drawn from different parts of the country including J&K had reached Teetwal to participate in the grand installation of the Goddess idol. 

A new history has been scripted and it will be the beginning of a new era of brotherhood and peace in the region, said Ravinder Pandita who is chairman of the Save Sharda Committee. Ravinder Pandita and other devotees who constructed the temple at Teetwal and brought the idol from Shingeri Math to this place after traveling 6000 kilometres now want the early restart of Sharda Peeth Yatra on the other side of LOC.

The locals of the area also joined their Pandit Brothern on this auspicious day and hope that with the reconstruction and restart of this temple the brotherhood will increase among the people in this LOC area, and this will also help the upliftment of the people living in this far-flung place close to LOC.

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