PM Modi begins 45-hour meditation at Vivekananda Rock Memorial in Kanniyakumari

While the PM chose Kedarnath cave to reflect and meditate after the end of the campaign for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, he has now chosen this historic spot in the southernmost tip of the country.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Vivekananda Rock Memorial in Kanniyakumari (Photo | PTI)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Vivekananda Rock Memorial in Kanniyakumari (Photo | PTI)

KANNIYAKUMARI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi began his 45-hour-long meditation scheduled to go on till June 1 at the Vivekananda Rock Memorial in Kanniyakumari around 7pm on Thursday.

The PM’s helicopter from Thiruvananthapuram landed at the helipad at the state guest house at 5.10 pm. After staying for a brief while at the guest house, the PM visited the Bhagavathi Amman temple located 200 metres from the guest house and offered worship. Clad in a white dhoti and shawl, Modi prayed at the temple and circumambulated the ‘garbhagriha’. Priests performed a special ‘arthi’ and he was given temple ‘prasad’ that included a shawl and a framed photograph of the presiding deity of the temple.

Later, he reached the rock memorial by a ferry service operated by the state government-run shipping corporation.

Immediately after entering the memorial, the PM showered flowers on the portraits of Ramakrishna Paramahamsa and mother Sri Sarada Devi. He also paid floral tributes to the life-size statue of Swami Vivekananda kept on a pedestal at the mandapam before commencing his meditation.

Following the culmination of the hectic Lok Sabha election campaign in which he presided and addressed a multitude of political roadshows and rallies, Modi will be meditating in an ambience of quietude, where probably only the sound of breaking waves could be heard.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at Vivekananda Rock Memorial in Kanniyakumari (Photo | PTI)
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Sources said Vivekananda Kendra all-India vice-president Anumantha Roa, joint general secretary Kishore, and Vivekananda Kendra administrative officer Ananthasree Padmanabhan will be stationed at the memorial during the PM’s three-day stay. Security has been beefed up in the entire Kanniyakumari district with about 2,000 police personnel being deployed, besides heightened vigil by the Coast Guard and the Navy in the sea.

While outfits including Thanthai Periyar Dravidar Kazhagam staged a black flag demonstration in Madurai opposing Modi, social media platform 'X' also witnessed a flood of #GoBackModi posts amid political opposition to the broadcast of his meditation in view of the seventh final phase of voting for the Lok Sabha elections on June 1. Speaking to reporters in Sivaganga, Tamil Nadu BJP president K Annamalai termed the PM’s event as an out-and-out ‘private’ visit. "It is PM’s personal visit. That’s why party leaders and cadres did not take part in the event,” he said.

All arrangements are in place for the 45-hour stay at the memorial named after the revered Hindu saint. This is the first time that the PM will be staying at the memorial built as a tribute to Swami Vivekananda who meditated over the rocks inside the sea in 1892.

While the PM chose Kedarnath cave to reflect and meditate after the end of the campaign for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, he has now chosen this historic spot in the southernmost tip of the country for his spiritual pursuit.

Ahead of his departure on June 1, Modi is likely to visit the Thiruvalluvar statue, located next to the memorial. Both the memorial and the 133-ft statue are built on tiny islets that are separate and mound-like rocky formations in the sea.

The ferry service to the memorial operated by Poompuhar Shipping Corporation was stopped at 11.30 am on Thursday. It will resume on Friday. In view of the PM’s visit, fishing has been banned at Chinna Muttom, Kanniyakumari and Kovalam fishing villages for three days, sources said.

Congress functionaries in Tirunelveli hoisted black flag at their party office on Thursday to condemn the PM’s visit. Party functionaries led by Tirunelveli Corporation district president K Sankarapandian alleged that the PM had defamed Mahatma Gandhi and Tamils during his election campaign.

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