Pandharpur: The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) is in the news for all the wrong reasons. In a notable development, the Maharashtra government had allotted a 200 sqm plot to the ISKCON to construct a ghat on the banks of Chandrabhaga river at Pandharpur.
The Hare Krishna Movement had received donations of nearly Rs15 crore to construct a ghat. Now, its inauguration is in limbo, as the district authorities of Pandharpur say ISKCON has not taken proper permissions to construct this ghat.
In fact, a few days ago, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray had performed an arti on the Chandrabhaga banks from this ghat. The movement had invited Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to inaugurate the ghat.
Meanwhile, the work is on to construct a temple of Chandrabhaga goddess. Every evening, devotees throng the banks to perform artis, which, many say, is similar to Kashi. The ISKCON has even been preparing for a grand inauguration, as 7,000 devotees from across the world are expected.
However, the district authorities sent a report stating the Hare Krishna Movement, ISKCON has not taken all the necessary permissions to construct the ghat. In fact, Pandharpur will see lakhs of devotees on Ashadhi Ekadashi day, when the pilgrimage of Warkaris culminate here. It will only make matters difficult for the ISKCON.
District Collector Dr Rajendra Bhosale confirmed that the ISKCON submitted a report. “We have submitted the report. Now, the ball is in state government’s court to take the next step.”