PM Modi offers prayer at Lingaraj temple

Bhubaneswar: After assuming office as Prime Minister, Narendra Modi visited the Lingaraj Temple in Bhubaneswar for the first time amidst tight security arrangements and paid obeisance to the deities at the sacred shrine.

With chanting of slokas and hymns, Modi performed abhisekh and also offered bel leaves and flowers to the deity at the main temple for nearly five minutes.

Modi had earlier reached the Lingaraj temple at around 8.45 am and spent more than 15 minutes inside the shrine.

After arriving at the temple, the Prime Minister was welcomed by several BJP leaders including Dharmendra Pradhan, Samir Mohanty and Prithviraj Harichandan and State govt officials.

Priests and temple trust officials presented Modi with a ‘khandua’ and accompanied him to the temple.

The Prime Minister went into the natya mandap and worshipped the Lingaraj amid slokas.

During his visit in the temple courtyard, a special guide briefed Modi about the significance of the Lingaraj, rituals and the temple’s history. The prime Minister also sought blessings at the Sana Ganesh Mandir, Parvati Mandir, and Bhubanesvari Mandir.

The temple authorities also presented specially prepared korakhai and arisa bhog to the Prime Minister.

After having the darshan of the deities at the Lingaraj temple, Modi waved at onlookers standing behind the barricades. Later Modi left for Janta Maidan, where the BJP’s two-day national executives’ meet 2017 is on.

In view of the Prime Minister’s programme, restrictions were imposed on the temple visit for common visitors and devotees this morning.

Earlier in the day, Modi met the family members of 16 Paika Bidroha martyrs and honoured them at the Raj Bhavan in Bhubaneswar.