Pramukh Swami Maharaj, spiritual guru and head of Bochasanvasi Akshar Purushottam Sansthan (BAPS) of Swaminarayan sect passed away on Saturday at his ashram located at Sarangpur. He was 95.
Fondly known as Swami among his disciples, Pramukh Swami Maharaj, after a brief illness of about a month, breathed his last on Saturday at 6 p.m, reports said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed grief over his death. Modi tweeted, "HH Pramukh Swami Maharaj, a stalwart among humans who embodied compassion & humility. His service to society will always be remembered."
Modi saw a mentor in Pramukh Swami Maharaj as he wrote in his second tweet, "HH Pramukh Swami Maharaj was a mentor to me. I will never forget my interactions with him. Will miss his presence."
Pramukh Swami Maharaj was kept in an Intensive Care Unit(ICU) specially set up within the Sarangpur BAPS campus.
Born on December 7, 1921 to a Patel family of Chansad village near Vadodara, Pramukh Swami Maharaj was named Shantilal Patel and later ordained as Shastri Narayanswarupdas. He received initiation as a Hindu Swami in 1940 from Shastriji Maharaj, the founder of BAPS.
He was made President of BAPS in 1950. Former head and spiritual guru, Yogiji Maharaj declared Pramukh Swami Maharaj as his spiritual successor and guru of BAPS in 1971.
Under Pramukh Swami's leadership, the BAPS grew from an organisation mainly restricted within Gujarat, to become one of the most widely spread Hindu institution having its presence across the globe.
Pramukh Swami Maharaj Early Life Shantilal was born in the village of Chansad, Gujarat, on 7 December 1921. His parents, Motibhai and Diwaliben Patel, were disciples of Shastriji Maharaj and followers of the Akshar Purushottam faith. Motibhai and Diwaliben were both involved in the Swaminarayan fellowship; Diwaliben’s family’s association with the Swaminarayan fellowship extended to the time of Bhagatji Maharaj. Shastriji Maharaj had blessed young Shantilal at birth, and had told his father, “This child is ours; when the time is ripe, please give him to us. He will lead thousands to the devotion of God. Through him, thousands will attain liberation.
On 7 November 1939, when Shantilal was seventeen years old, he received a letter from his guru, Shastriji Maharaj, asking him to join the sadhus. His parents gave their permission and blessings, and Shantilal left home that day to join Shastriji Maharaj and his sadhus
Left for Akshar Dham
Spiritual head and president of the BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha leave for AksharDhaam on 13 Aug 2016, at 6 pm in Sarangpur temple.
Pramukh Swami Maharaj had been under treatment for chest infection for the past few weeks.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed condolences on the passing away of Pramukh Swami Maharaj.
- Vijay Rupani: Deeply pained to hear passing away of Param Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj. It's irreparable loss to the society as whole. My prayer !
- Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: Pramukh Swamiji has been one the greatest saints of the present times. He will continue to inspire the Swami Narayan movement.
- Smriti Irani: HH Pramukh Swami Maharaj's demise is an irreparable loss. He will always be remembered for his humility and vision for humanity.
- Anandiben Patel: Deeply saddened by the demise of His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj. Interactions with him were true source of inspiration and wisdom!
Antim Sanskar of Pramukh Swami