Last rites of Swami Dayanand performed in Rishikesh

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Dehradun
  • Updated: Sep 26, 2015 11:57 IST
Saints pay tribute to Dayanand Saraswati during his samadhi at his ashram in Rishikesh on Friday. (HT Photo)

A large number of saints, politicians and disciples of seer Dayanand Saraswati gathered at his ashram on Friday to witness the last rites of the 87-year-old saint and guru of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The seer died after prolonged illness on Wednesday night at his ashram.

Vishwa Hindu Parishad chief Ashok Singhal, national general secretary of Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) Ram Madhav were among thousands of visitors who thronged the ashram to offer last respects to the saint.

Swami Dayanand’s body was sprinkled with holy waters before it was lowered into his grave (bhoo-samadhi) in a sitting position at a spot facing the river Ganga, amid chanting of Vedic hymns.

The late seer had lakhs of followers including PM Modi and film star Rajnikant.

Modi had met his guru during his visit to Uttarakhand on September 11. The seer was admitted at a private medical college on Sept 13 but his health did not improve. He was suffering with kidney and blood pressure ailments.

Born on August 15, 1930 in a small village in Tamilnadu, Natrajan (Dayanand Saraswati) inclined towards spiritualism since his childhood.

In early 50’s, he got associated with Swami Chinmiyanand. In 1961, Natrajan went into sainthood and was given a new name Dayanand Saraswati. In 1963, he came to Rishikesh and stayed here till his death.

During the lifetime, the seer wrote more than 70 books on spiritualism.

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