Akhada Parishad to hold key meeting next month, discussion on next chief likely
Shodashi rituals of late Akhil Bhartiya Akhada Parishad (ABAP) chief Mahant Narendra Giri will take place at his Baghambari Gaddi Math in Prayagraj on October 5. The rituals take place on the 16th day after the demise of a saint.
A day or two before that a meeting of the Akhada Parishad, the apex decision-making body of the 13 recognised Hindu monastic orders of the country, would also be held at the Math where a discussion on choosing the next head of the ABAP is expected to take place, top seers of the Akhada Parishad indicated. The date of this meeting will be finalised soon, they added.
The ABAP chief’s post is lying vacant after the death of Mahant Narendra Giri. He was found dead inside a room at Baghambari Gaddi Math on September 20. The CBI is probing his death.
“The general consensus among the representatives of the 13 monastic orders is that the meeting of the ABAP be held on October 3 or October 5, just before the 16th-day rituals of the Mahant’s death,” said a senior seer privy to the matter.
ABAP’s meetings in Prayagraj usually have been held at Baghambari Math premises for the past many years but the next meeting will not be taking place here as most seers believe that no such event should be conducted in the Math before the Shodashi rituals. The next meeting of ABAP could be held either at Shri Panchayati Akhada’s Manahirwani Ashram at Daraganj or Shri Panchayati Udaseen Akhada premises at Kydganj (both in Prayagraj), the seer said.
ABAP general secretary and Juna Akhada patron Swami Hari Giri said, “Plans are afoot to hold a meeting of ABAP before the Shodashi rituals of Mahant Narendra Giri. Many important points are up for discussion,” he said.
Mahant Narendra Giri was elected ABAP president in 2014 soon after the Kumbh-2013 on the banks of the Sangam. It was during his tenure as the Akhada Parishad chief that the Kumbh-2019 was held in a grand manner. Narendra Giri was re-elected to the post in October 2019 during a meeting in Haridwar.
After the untimely demise of Mahant Narendra Giri, most saints want a new ABAP chief to be elected on priority as preparations for Kumbh-2025 in Prayagraj need to start at least two-three years in advance. The senior saints at the ABAP meeting would need to take a call on whether to appoint a new Akhada Parishad chief from Prayagraj or go for a saint from some other district or state.