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Text of Prime Minister’s speech at unveiling of 112 feet statue of “Adiyogi – The Shiva”

My loving greetings to all.

It is my honour to be here, in this august gathering.

That too, on the auspicious occasion of Maha-Shivratri.

There are many festivals, but this one is pre-fixed with “Maha.”

Indeed, there are many Devs, but only one Maha-Dev.

There are many Mantras, but the Mantra which is identified with Lord Shiva, is called Maha-Mrityunjayi Mantra.

Such is the glory of Lord Shiva.

Maha-Shivratri symbolizes a union of divinity with a purpose, of overcoming darkness and injustice.

It inspires us to be courageous and fight for good.

It marks the shift of seasons, from the cold to the lively spring and brightness.

Maha-Shivratri celebrations go on for the entire night. This symbolizes a spirit of vigilance- that we have to protect nature and mould our activities in sync with our ecological surroundings.

My home state, Gujarat is the land of Somnath. The call of the people and the longing for service took me to Kashi, the land of Vishwanath.

From Somnath to Vishwanath, from Kedarnath to Rameshwaram and from Kashi to Coimbatore where we have gathered, Lord Shiva is everywhere.

Like crores of Indians across the length and breadth of the nation, I too feel delighted to be a part of celebrations of Maha-Shivratri.

And we are merely drops in the ocean.

Through centuries, there have lived countless devotees, in every age and time.

They came from different places.

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