Abu Dhabi’s temple to be ready in less than a year
Abu Dhabi - “Al Wathba is just 30 minutes from Abu Dhabi City. It will be close to the highway on Abu Dhabi-Al Ain road,” Shetty, chief executive officer of NMC Healthcare and UAE Exchange, told Khaleej Times.
The first Hindu temple in Abu Dhabi will come up on 20,000 square metres of land at Al Wathba. “We took delivery of the land on Monday. The temple will be built within one year,” said BR Shetty, the businessman who heads the temple coordination committee, on Monday night.
“Al Wathba is just 30 minutes from Abu Dhabi City. It will be close to the highway on Abu Dhabi-Al Ain road,” Shetty, chief executive officer of NMC Healthcare and UAE Exchange, told Khaleej Times.
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Elaborating on the size of the land, he said: “The temple will come up on 20,000 square metres (4.95 acres) of compact and beautiful land. It will be the largest.” At present, there are two Hindu temples and one Sikh gurudwara in Dubai.
Specifying the time frame, Shetty said: “It shouldn’t take a year. It should be ready in eight to nine months.”
Inside the temple, the idols will be of “deities Krishna, Maheshwara, Ayyappa and more.” The temples in Dubai are dedicated to Shiva and Krishna. The architectural plan has been finalised and a consultant appointed.
“The temple will have a good vrindavan (garden) and a waterfront,” Shetty added. It was during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit in August last year that the UAE Government announced its decision to allocate land for Abu Dhabi’s first ever Hindu temple.
“Till date, we only had permission for the temple. It was only on Monday that the land allotment happened,” Shetty said on the sidelines of a press conference at the Indian Social and Cultural Centre to announce the second ISC–Koosamma Shedthy Memorial UAE Open Badminton Team League Tournament. The UAE is well known internationally for its tolerance of other religions, and Shaikha Lubna Al Qasimi’s appointment as the country’s Minister of State for Tolerance earlier this year was widely praised.
Just last week, Shaikha Lubna visited the Gurunarak Darbar Sikh Temple in Jebel Ali, where she noted that “religious tolerance is a fundamental pillar of a strong state, and a catalyst of prosperity in today’s world.”
Know the temple
> The temple will be the largest in the UAE
> It will be built on a 20,000sqm land in Al Wathba
> It will be close to the highway on Abu Dhabi-Al Ain road
> It will take about nine months to build
> The temple will be fully sponsored by the Abu Dhabi Government
> It will house idols of deities Krishna, Maheshwara and Ayyappa
> It will have a garden and a waterfront