New Temple Rises in Spain

January 15, 2007

Source: Hinduism Today

CEUTA, SPAIN, January 15, 200&; (HPI note: This report is translated from Spanish) Carpenters, electricians and bricklayers are working against the clock on Echegaray Street where the new Hindu temple is being built. "We hope to inaugurate it by the end of February," explains Ramesh Chandiramani, president of the Hindu community. In order to build the temple the Ceuta city government and the Hindu community signed an agreement last year in which the the city committed to finance part of the work, estimated at approximately US$390,000. The work started around the middle of September, once the "Consejeria de Fomento" granted all the required permits.

The facade of the temple, whose door is crowned by a dome, will be covered with green marble imported from Jaipur, India. The interior will be adorned with wood prepared with a modern laser carving technique. The Krishna, Hanuman, Ganesha and Sita Ram Lachuman Deities are also being imported from Jaipur. Once inaugurated, the temple will not replace the smaller temples that already exist in Ceuta, like the one on Algeciras Road, "since they will remain independent from this temple."

"It was our decision to have companies from our own city involved in making this project a reality," he explains. The overall project design was awarded to the Ceuta architects Nordin and Hicham Mohamed, who have collaborated with Morales. The stone masons working on the marble facade are the only workers that have been brought in from India, "and that is because there are no experts in this type of stone work around here." The rest of the workers, carpenters, electricians and glass craftsmen are all from Ceuta.

When completed, this temple will be an oasis of peace to which inhabitants of the city, whatever their religious affiliation, will be able to come when looking for a place of withdrawal and tranquility. "Like Hinduism, this temple will be open to everybody," says Chandiramani. "Gandhi also said: a culture that is not open is condemned to extinction."