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Page added on November 21, 2012
On Sunday last (November 18 2012) the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland the Rt Hon Theresa Villiers MP and the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government [DCLG] the Rt Hon Eric Pickles MP visited Bhaktivedanta Manor for the Diwali festival.
Prominent leaders of the Hindu community also attended and in particular met with Mr Pickles. After a tour of the temple and darshan of Sri Sri Radha Gokulananda, Mr Pickles sat with the leaders of ISKCON, BAPS Swami Narayan, Hindu Forum of Britain, Avanti Schools Trust and Sewa Day.
The various leaders in attendance presented a whole catalogue of initiatives in volunteering, aid and social work that are performed by the Hindu community. Mr Pickles expressed his deep appreciation and wants to see the community working more dynamically with the DCLG.
On his tour he stopped to speak with volunteers and spent time with the head volunteers at the Manor.
Mr Pickles stated: “I am happy to be here at Bhaktivedanta Manor and I am very impressed with the devotion and the service of all the volunteers of this community, they are putting so much back into society in a selfless manner.”
“This is my first time at Bhaktivedanta Manor and I have been overwhelmed by the hospitality received, and I am inspired by the Hindu community working together for the good of all”.
The visit and meeting was very much appreciated by the temple and community leaders.
As mentioned the festival also had a very special and regular visitor, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland the Rt Hon Theresa Villiers MP who spoke from the main stage in a very appreciative mood regarding the contribution of ISKCON and the Manor to the community.
Srutidharma das Temple President Bhaktivedanta Manor and Eric Pickles MP
Srutidharma das, Eric Pickles MP and Theresa Villiers MP
From left Vikas Pota (Seva Day), Gauri das (ISKCON Bhaktivedanta Manor), Eric Pickles MP, Jitu Patel (BAPS Swaminarayan), Arjun Vekaria (President of Hindu Forum of Britain) and Arup Ganguly (Seva Day Chairman)
Theresa Villiers MP and Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and Srutidharma das
Praghosa das UK GBC, Theresa Villiers MP and Goloka devi dasi
Goloka devi dasi, Eric Pickles MP and Praghosa das
Gauri das, Praghosa das, Eric Pickles MP and Srutidharma das
Goloka devi dasi, Praghosa dasa, Theresa Villiers MP and Lord Popat
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