The city's Jain community will host a three-day grand celebration, starting Saturday, to mark the 100th year since the late Acharya Ramchandra Surishwarji Maharaj adopted sadhu jivan (life). The celebration will include a rath yatra on the first day, a sangeet programme as well as various other programmes for the women and children of the community.
Sharing more details about Ramchandra Surishwarji Maharaj's life, Acharya Shreyansh Surishwarji Maharaj said, "At the age of 17, he decided to give up material life and became a sadhu. He visited several parts of India to spread Jain religion and culture. In fact, he became such a popular saint that at the young age of 40, he was made a Jain Acharya, which is a great achievement."
He further said that Ramchandra Surishwarji Maharaj had become popular due to the many people who opposed his thinking. "But he had a unique ability to attract huge crowds as many enjoyed listening to his preachings," he added.
On Saturday, the Jains will begin a big rath yatra from Darshan Bungalow near Parimal crossroads where the Maharaj breathed his last in 1992. The yatra will end at Tagore Hall. It will have 13 raths, 26 horse carriages, four elephants, two white elephants, nine raas-mandlis and four music bands. "Also, the rath yatra will feature dance exponents from Rajasthan, a special dance by Siddi community as well as performances by two magicians," said Shreyan Surishwarji Maharaj.
Hitarathivijayji Maharaj said, "The basic idea is to inspire the youth and make them realise what actual happiness is. We want to spread the preachings of Ramchandra Surishwarji Maharaj.
During the three-day celebration, we will provide all types of material happiness to the Jain devotees like classical dance and sangeet. The same will be juxtaposed with preachings and talks on eternal happiness. By this, people will realise that true happiness does not lie in material things."
More than 30,000 people from across the state are expected to attend the celebration.