Exhibiting the proud historical heritage of Jain realm the Bhopavar Tirth is approx 87000 years old. Adding to the grandeur of Malwa region and further glorifying the Jain religion, this pilgrimage has become a destination for peace lovers and devotees. Restoration of this pilgrimage is a great epic of this age. It has a long way to go ahead.
Since after the beginning of its development work, in Samvat 1978 by Pu. Aacharya Aanandsagar Soorishvarji Maharaj, Pu. Shri Sagranand Soorishvarji Maharaj and Panyas Pravar Shri Motivijay ji Maharaj; who had visited this place to attend the Punyavanti Pat Parampra ceremony of Rev. Gandhar Bhagwant Shri Sudharma Swami Ji, and other Guru Bhagvans, the Tirth has gained a great fame all over India.
There have been many upheavals in the history since after the origin of the pilgrimage. Being too old the pilgrimage had reached to the worst possible devastating state and required immediate restoration. As I’ve stated in prologue of the book, there are many proofs of it. Chintamani Parsvnath temple of Khambat which was built in the year 1108 and was restored in the year 1295. As per then scriptures, Malwa prospered on the great donations from Sapdalaksha and Chitrakoot. We are also moving in this direction. A great and magnificent Jain Temple has been determined for this pilgrimage to adore the grand idol of Bhagwan Shri Shantinath ji.
The complete layout of projected temple was sent to all the Jain realm and all Pu. Aacharyas who returned their cordial acceptances and blessings for this holy cause. Many maps and cost estimates were invited from the most experienced and renowned Jain temple architectures and the best fitting one, with intensive art work and high dome, was finalized. The cost of full construction of this Jinalay has been estimated to be Rs.15 Crore.
The restoration is going on under divine blessings and direction of Param Pu. Aacharyadev Shri Sagranand Soorishvarji Maharaj of Pattdhar Samuday’s Param Pu. Aacharya Bhavwant Shri Chandrasagar Soorishvarji’s deciple Malav Bhushan Vardhman Taponishtha Param Pu. Aacharya Devesh Shri Navratnsagar Soorishvarji Maharaj.
The BhoomiPoojan ceremony for restoration of Jinalay was offered on the auspicious day of 12 of December 2002. Param GuruBhakt Shah Hansraj ji Dharmaji Katariya family secured the Bhoomi Poojan right by bidding generously for it.
First time in the history of Malwa region, 1600 Tele (Attham) was called on this auspicious occasion which successfully fulfilled. Bhoomi Poojan and 1600 Tele were secured by Smt. Lalitaben Himmatbhai Oghavji Gandhi family of Indore. After these ceremonies a 60’ long x 60’ wide area was dug to 27’ deep. The grand stone ceremony was completed in an auspicious omen on 5th June. 16000 Aayambil were called to mark this historical event and Aayambil worships were offered in great numbers in many villages.
The stone ceremony (Shilanyas) was availed by Smt. Kanchanben Rasiklal Gandhi of Radhanpur (now Mumbai). Just after the ceremony the vast foundation pit was filled and constructed with stones. The foundation has been laid strong enough to thwart even powerful earthquakes.
Restoration work is progressing at a great speed, first under the aegis of Pu. Aacharya Shri Navratnsagar Soorishvarji M. Sa and now Paarm Guru Bhakt Shreshthivarya Shri Ramanlalji Jain (Montex Group) is looking after the restoration work. He has contributed greatly to avail this service opportunity. Shreshthivarya Shri Kumarpal Bhai V. Shah of Dholka has also contributed greatly to the cause.
The administration of the pilgrimage and construction of Jinalaya is being adeptly supervised by Shreshthivarya Shri Surendrakumar ji Rajmalji Jain (Petrol Pump wale) of Dhar. Shri Mahendrabhai Mandvi, Palitana is contributing the best possible architectural designs for the Jinalaya. The Jinalaya is taking shape fast with pink stones excavated from mines of Bansi Pahadpur.
4 June 2003, Wednesday, 108 Abhishek of 16th Tirthankar Bhagwan Shri Shantinath Prabhu was offered with holy water collected from various rivers and tanks, herbs and religious mantras. The stone-laying ceremony of Bhopavar Tirth was celebrated on Thursday i.e. 5th June 2003 which was availed by as under:
|Main stone||: Shri Sumermalji Kanmalji Sadani, Soorat (Now Bangalore)|
|Agnikon Shila||: Shri Chandrasen Bhai Abhaychandraji Jhaveri, Mumbai|
|Uchar Shila||: Shri Raman Bhai Jain (Montex Group), Mumbai|
|Wayavya Shila||: Shri Kastoorchand ji Bapoolalji family, Shri Jasubhai Mahendrabhai, Mumbai|
|Ishan Shila||: Shri Niranjanbhai Gulabchandra Choksi, Mumbai.|
|Pashim Shila||: Shri Harshadray Veerchandra Shah, Shri Girish Bhai, Mumbai|
|East Stone||: Sau. Alkaben Pankaj Bhai Gandhi, Mumbai|
|Nairutya Shila||: Shri Surendra Kumar ji Rajmalji Jain (Petrol Pump, Dhar)|
|South Stone||: Shri Pradeepbhai Gulabchandraji Choksi, Mumbai|
The roof-stone (Siddha Shila) and stones for 24 elements representing 24 Mahaang of the pilgrimage – were founded in a celebration on 28 February 2004 (Miti Falgun Sudi 8), Saturday by the great savior of Malwa region Aacharya Bhagwan Shri Chandrasagar Soorishvar M. Sa.’s true disciple and administrator of Shankheshwar Aagam Mandir Pu. Panyas Abhuday Sagarji’s younger Guru-bhai, the main motivator of Bhopavar restoration, Pu. Aacharya shri Navratn Soorishvarji M. Sa and his disciple Ganivarya Shri Vishvratn Sagarji M.Sa and other communion.
The roof-stone service was availed by great charitable Jainratna Shreshthivarya Shri Deepchandji S. Guardy, Mumbai. The ceremony was presided by Shri Ramanlal ji Jain (Montex Group), Mumbai and the ceremony was processed under the guidance of Shri Raghunath ji Shastri (Writer of Gayatri Panchang). Pilgrimage architect Shri Mahendrabhai Sompura Palitana also attended the ceremony.
40 ft. from the entrance of the Jinalay, a befitting trust office is to be constructed in a 50ft radius area. A life-size white marble statue of a member from the donor family would be installed facing towards Bhagwan Shri Shantinath ji, and a stone-inscription will also be laid.
The great influencing historical temple of Shri Shantinath Prabhu Ji is stretched far and wide. The gate-way of this holy land is proposed to be very artistic, grand and attractive. Donor’s name will be etched on the gateway and a 6ft high stone-inscription would be laid there.
Construction of Sabha Mandap (Auditorium) and Koli Mandap is also progressing fast. Donations, open or hidden, are greatly needed. You can send bank drafts in the name of trust to contribute in the restoration of the pilgrimage and avail the eternal blessings.