Jains bid adieu to senior monk Acharya Prem Suri

Posted: 26.09.2016

Daily News & Analysis

Mon, 26 Sep 2016-06:40am, Mumbai

The Jain community on Sunday bid farewell to the senior-most Jain monk, Tapagachadipati Premsuriswarji Maharajsaheb, of the Tapagacha sect of Shwetambar Murti Pujak Jains. The senior-most Jain monk passed away in the wee hours of September 25 at around 12-18am. He had been unwell for over a month and was in hospital for cough-related ailments and old age. On Saturday night, hours before the monk passed away, community members had sent messages to Jains across the world to fast for the monk's better health of Jain monk.

About 10000 community members took part in the procession. The monk's body was taken around in a palkhi (a tradition among Jains) before the final rites were conducted. The procession started from Walkeshwar's Babu Amichand Pannalal Jain Derasar (temple) to Napean Sea Road to Kemps Corner, Prarthna Samaj, Navgrah Derasar near Marwadi Vidyalay and Dharam Palace, Hughes Road, Panchsheel Plaza and then to Banganga, where the monk's last rites where performed.

Amrita Fadnavis, wife of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Mangal Prabhat Lodha and corporator Jyotsna Mehta were among those who paid their last respects on Sunday. Almost all Jain temple trustees in the city were present, along with members of Jain International Organisation.

"Two of my nieces took Dikhsa because of him. His teachings will be always be remembered," Ajit Shah, member of the community who was present at the place.

As part of a Jain tradition, money is collected through bids to perform last rites. The money is to be used strictly used for the welfare of sadhus and sadhvis, the temples and other charitable work. "There were 15 bids and Rs 18 Cr was collected. Of the total amount, Rs 11 Cr was collected by five people who also performed the last rites. About Rs 7 Cr was collected for charity."

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