Updated July 2023
The multi-cultural UAE is home to a thriving Hindu community, with many of the families having ancestral roots in the country. Dubai already has quite a few Hindu temples. And now, much to the delight of Hindus outside Dubai, Abu Dhabi too is getting its very first Hindu stone temple – BAPS Hindu Mandir!
Keep reading the article by Wego to learn more about the Abu Dhabi Hindu temple.
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BAPS Hindu Mandir
On February 15, Indian community members in the country will be able to join the celebrations through a public dedication assembly in the presence of Swami Maharaj. Participation in this ceremony requires prior registration.
The BAPS Hindu Mandir is an upcoming Hindu place of worship in Abu Dhabi, consisting of exquisite marble-and-sandstone shrines, an amphitheatre, an exhibition hall, a library and book shop, classrooms, a sports centre, a food court, a majlis, thematic gardens, and two community centres with a total capacity to seat 5,000 people.
The seven shrines of the Mandir will be a nod of respect to the seven Emirates of the UAE and will house idols of:
- Akshar & Purushottam
- Radha and Krishna
- Ram, Sita, and Hanuman
- Shiv, Parvati, Kartikeya and Ganesh
- Jagannathji, Subhadra and Baldevji
- Tirupati Balaji and Padmavati
- Ayyappa Swami.
The premises of this ‘spiritual oasis of global harmony’ will sprawl over a whopping 55,000 square meters.
The Mandir will be headed by Swami Brahmaviharidas, while its construction is being overseen by Swami Akshaymunidas.
BAPS Hindu Mandir full form
The construction of the Abu Dhabi Hindu temple is being undertaken by the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam (BAPS) Swaminarayan Sanstha, a religious organisation that has already completed over 1,100 Hindu shrines in different parts of the world.
BAPS Hindu Mandir location and map
The Abu Dhabi Hindu Mandir will be located on the P6 Al Taf Road (E16), in the Abu Mureikha area, near Al Rahba off the Dubai–Abu Dhabi Sheikh Zayed Highway.
Located between Abu Dhabi and Dubai, the temple will be accessible from the Abu Dhabi – Ghuweifat Highway (E11).
Click here for the Google Maps location and directions.
Abu Dhabi Hindu Temple construction status and opening dates
The BAPS Hindu Mandir is expected to open doors to devotees on 14 February 2024. Members of the Indian community of the country will partake in the celebrations through a public dedication assembly graced by the presence of Swami Maharaj. However, to participate in this momentous ceremony, prior registration is necessary.
The MahaPeeth ceremony, which marked the laying of the first stone of the temple, took place in May 2022. The foundation and construction of the entire ground floor, consisting of 14 layers of stone, has been completed.
The construction of the first floor, including the Garbhagruha, i.e., the temple’s inner sanctum, is now underway.
Cultural significance of the Abu Dhabi Hindu temple
The project was launched by the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, during his visit to the UAE in 2018. The land on which the Mandir will be erected was gifted to Modi by the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan. In September 2019, it became the first Hindu religious place to be granted an official license by the authorities.
Being built with stone and pink sandstone specially imported from Rajasthan, India, the temple is expected to last at least a thousand years.
When complete, the structure will be 32 metres tall and feature engravings portraying the stories of Hindu gods friezes decorated with various artists and animals, and over a thousand carvings of deities in the exterior brackets. The steps to the temple will depict the teachings of other ancient civilisations, like the Mayans.
As per Hindu traditions, the temple will not use any iron or steel reinforcements in the construction work. Instead, it will take sustainability measures such as a green foundation with 55% fly ash, eco-friendly construction materials like earthen bricks and stone, a solar power arrangement, and water conservation energy methods.
Even while the temple’s construction is in progress, the site has already started seeing vibrant celebrations of festivals like Diwali, Janmashtami and Women’s Day, with thousands of devotees flocking to the Mandir.
BAPS Hindu Mandir Abu Dhabi photos and videos
Several photos and videos have been released on the official website of the Abu Dhabi Hindu temple, showcasing the remarkable project and its latest construction developments. Take a look below.