Varanasi: An 18th-century idol of Goddess Annapurna, brought back from Canada, was installed at a newly-constructed area inside the Kashi Vishwanath temple corridor in Uttar Pradesh here on Monday.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath was present during the “pran pratistha” (or consecration) function of the deity at the newly-constructed Annapurna temple inside the 240-year-old temple corridor. The Maa Annapurna temple has been constructed in the northeast corner as per ‘Vastu shastra’, one of the priests said.
Amid chanting of hymns and ‘shlokas’, the idol, stolen in 1913 from the banks of Ganga, was finally installed by Adityanath, who was accompanied by state Urban Development Minister Ashutosh Tandon and Culture Minister Neelkanth Tiwari.
Chief Minister started off the ‘pran pratistha’ ceremony by garlanding the stone idol and performing the ‘aarti’. The ceremony lasted around 30 minutes.
The Union Culture Ministry handed over the idol stolen a century back to the UP government on November 11. It reached Varanasi late Sunday in a religious procession crossing Kasganj, Kanpur, Lucknow, Ayodhya, Sultanpur and Jaunpur.
The idol reached the Kashi Vishwanath Corridor at 9.25 am.
The new temple is situated adjacent to the northern entry gate of the Kashi Vishwanath Dham.