With a temple priest at the helm, the official residence of Uttar Pradesh chief minister is set for a saintly makeover.
The residence at Lucknow’s 5, Kalidas Marg was “purified” in Hindu tradition on Monday after Yogi Adityanath assumed office as the chief minister.
Adityanath is the head priest of the centuries-old Gorakhnath temple, a Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva. He is a member of the Nath sect, whose members perform yajnas daily.
The chief minister, who offered a 10-minute puja at 5 KD, is expected to hold yajnas at his official residence too.
And there is more to it. All leather products, including sofa sets, are being moved out of rooms reserved for personal use of the chief minister.
After his return from Delhi on Tuesday night, the chief minister has put up at the VVIP guest house raising the possibility of him shifting to 5 KD on the auspicious period of Navratras -- considered holy by the Hindus -- beginning next Tuesday.
In Gorakhpur, Adityanath used to begin his day tending to cows; a practice he is likely to bring to the chief minister’s residence.
A cowshed could come up at the CM’s residence where about 10 cows from the Gorakhnath temple ‘gaushala’ are expected to be brought to Lucknow.
The Gorakhnath temple’s ‘gaushala’ has about 500 cows.
Shiv Parsan, the caretaker of Gorakhnath temple, said each day at 5.30 am Yogi offered jaggery, biscuits, fruits and fresh grass to the cows, some of which were named by the chief minister.
“Some of them such as Gauri, Ganga, Narmada, Yamuna... don’t accept anything from anyone else,” he said. These cows will be among those expected to be shifted to 5 KD to enable the chief minister to tend to them each morning.
Yogi is a saint from ‘Nath panth’ which considers ‘gau seva’ a religious duty. The shifting of cattle from Gorakhpur to the CM’s residence in Lucknow is expected after Yogi’s visit to the Gorakhpur temple, possibly on Saturday.
Raja, the UP CM’s pet dog is also said to be restive since Yogi was crowned king. That’s because the new responsibility has left Yogi with no time to attend to Raja, reason why the CM’s pet animal could now be moved to 5 KD.
“Each day, Yogi would play with him after returning in the evening. He could be moved to Lucknow,” a temple staff said. “Books maintained at the small library managed by Gorakhnath temple trust too could be moved to the CM’s residence,” said Dwarka Tiwari, an office staff of the Temple Trust.
The special saffron dress that Yogi wears while performing his daily morning rituals, the idols and other ancillary items he requires for the purpose would soon be sent to Lucknow, confirmed Kamal Nath, the priest of Gorakhnath temple.