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$40 million Toronto Hindu temple, remarkable structure opens on July 22, 2007

Location: Just across the 18-acre site sits the Haveli- a community centre at Highway 427 and Finch, Toronto,

Torornto, July 20, 2007
Randeep Gill

The Swaminarayan Mandir, one of the most extraordinary and remarkable structure/buildings for Canadians, at the cost $40 million, will be inaugurated in Toronto on Sunday, July 22, 2007. The Mandir project was started in 2005 and finished in 18 months.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty and Toronto Mayor David Miller are expected to attend the opening ceremonies on July 22, 2007

Most of the people shocked to read that how somebody can build whole temple with a hammer and chisel. There are about 200, 000 Hindus in Toronto, according to Statistics Canada which paid for the $40 million building without any public or foundation funding. They also provided 400 volunteer workers.

The chief engineer, Akshay Muni Swami; a Hindu monk told reporters:

  • No steel is used and stones piled on stones. There are 340 pillars- solid rock used as columns and 84 ceilings decorated with all with carved pieces
  • The temple was designed according to ancient Vedic principles. The mandir was built using 24,000 pieces of marble (Italian marble and Turkish limestone) and limestone carved by hand in India, labelled, then shipped to Canada and assembled here. This include 5 metric tons, heaviest stone 50 grams, lightest stone 2,393 metric tons Turkish limestone 2,050 metric tons Italian Carrara marble 1,349 tonnes Indian sandstone
  • Every inch of the place is embellished with carved deities - cavorting horses, peacocks, elephants and lotus flowers using hammer and chisel by close to 2,000 craftsmen involved at 26 different sites in India , 100 of them flown from India

The Indo-Canadian Museum of Cultural Heritage was set up at ground level

Suresh Thakrar, a community leader says, "This is a place open to all and a place to educated about Indo-Canadians."

Nitya Vivek Swami, a Hindu monk, who has also worked on similar buildings in Houston, Chicago and London said, "We believe this is a living building, so it has to be built in a certain way."

Vinay Gidwaney, a volunteer said, " You don't have to be of any faith or religious background just take your shoes off and you're all set."

Naren Sachdev, a project manager said, each piece was marked with a bar code to facilitate construction. He estimated the the building will last a thousand years.

Because of Canadian winters, there was a hurdle for convincing city officials that the mandir is a completely steel-free structure


The auspicious murti-pratishtha ceremony will be held in the presence of Pramukh Swami Maharaj on Sunday 22 July 2007.

This historic occasion will be broadcast live throughout the world on AASTHA TV and TV Asia-Sahara ONE channels, as per the times given above and technical details below.

Indian Standard Time: 7.00 to 10.30 pm
Canadian / US Eastern Time: 9.30 am to 1.00 pm
UK Time: 2.30 to 6.00 pm

DTH broadcast service in USA (DIRECTV - World Direct Package - Channel No. 2005)
DTH broadcast service in UK(BSKYB - Channel No. 808)
DTH broadcast service in Canada(Rogers's Digital Cable via ATN)

India, Asia, Africa, Australia & Europe (‘C-Band’) – Aastha TV & Aastha International – Free-to-Air Satellite Television Channels:
In addition, the broadcast can be seen in USA on TV Asia and Sahara ONE (Dish Network).
For USA : TV ASIA is available on Dish Network and cable SAHARA ONE is available on Dish Network, AASTHA TV is available on DIRECTV For Canada : ATN (AASTHA TV)







$40 million Toronto Hindu temple, remarkable structure opens on July 22, 2007

  • It is the first such traditional Vedic mandir to be built in Canada
  • The auspicious murti-pratishtha ceremony will be held in the presence of Pramukh Swami Maharaj on Sunday 22 July 2007.

The project was stareted by Pramukh Swami Maharaj,
the spiritual leader of Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS).

  • The organization follow basic Hindu principles: one supreme God, the Vedas (the oldest scriptural texts of Hinduism), reincarnation, redemption and non-violence. A mandir is man's attempt to recreate nature wherever he settles in villages, towns or cities where he can revive peace and tranquility and worship God in silent serenity
  • Those who wish to sincerely serve society must be spiritually pure and only those who are spiritually pure can sincerely serve society!

    Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) is a socio-spiritual Hindu organization with its roots in the Vedas. It was revealed by Bhagwan Swaminarayan (1781-1830) in the late 18th century and established in 1907 by Shastriji Maharaj (1865-1951). Founded on the pillars of practical spirituality, the BAPS reaches out far and wide to address the spiritual, moral and social challenges and issues we face in our world. Its strength lies in the purity of its nature and purpose. BAPS strives to care for the world by caring for societies, families and individuals. This is done by mass motivation and individual attention, through elevating projects for all, irrespective of class, creed, colour or country. Its universal work through a worldwide network of over 3,300 centers has received many national and international awards and affiliation with the United?Nations. Today, a million or more Swaminarayan followers begin their day with puja and meditation, lead upright, honest lives and donate regular hours in serving others. No Alcohol, No Addictions, No Adultery, No Meat, No Impurity of body and mind are their five lifetime vows. Such pure morality and spirituality forms the foundation of the humanitarian services performed by BAPS.