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for India’s Prime Minister
By Deena Bandhu dasa
On the 2nd of September, the day after Nandotsava and Srila Prabhupada's Vyasa Puja, devotees from Sri Sri Krishna Balaram Mandir in Vrindavan gave Chappan Bhog Janmastami Prasada to the Honorable Prime Minister, the Honorable Deputy Prime Minister, the Honorable President, and the Honorable Vice President of India.
Sarvabhauma Prabhu, co-director of Indian Communications, along with Rupa Raghunatha, director of Vrindavan Food for Life, presented the Indian Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee, with a specially designed metal container with five kilos of Vrindavan Janmastami Prasad with Tulasi on top. This meeting was organized by Sri Col. R. C. Ravat, the secretary of the Sri Sri Krishna Balaram Committee, an advisory committee, formed by co-president Devakinandan Prabhu, of prominent well-wishers among local industrialists and professionals.
Sri Vajpayee immediately picked up some Tulasi leaves touched them to his head and honored them. Then he was presented with Bhagavad Gita As It Is and a small statue of Makhan Chora. He was enchanted seeing all these wonderful gifts and exclaimed, "How come you brought all this?"
Sarvabauma Prabhu replied, "It was Krishna's desire that He inspired us to bring this special mercy to you so that you will be able protect the citizens of this great country."
The Prime Minister said, "If He desires and gives me the energy, I will try to bring peace in this country."
Smiling, Sarvabhauma replied, "He lifted Govardhan Hill on his little finger, so if He desires, He can give you this. He inspired us to convey all this to you today."
Sri Vajpayee then invited the devotees to sit, and they requested him to visit Vrindavan. The Prime Minister immediately replied, "It is my heart’s desire to have darshan of Vrindavan." The devotees requested him to visit in Kartik, especially since this Kartik marks 25 years since Srila Prabhupada's disappearance.
Following this, they visited the Honorable President of India, Sri A. P. J. Abdul Kalam. Although we had to pass through very heavy security to visit the Prime Minister, after seeing his pleasure on our visit, the security guard phoned our car number ahead. Everywhere else we went, when the guards saw our car number, all the gates automatically opened just like the gates to Kamsa's prison on Janmastami Day.
Mr. Kalam immediately honored prasadam, and inviting us to sit, he reciprocated by offering lemon juice and sweets. The president asked the devotees what their mission was. Sarvabhauma replied, "We're a spiritual movement spreading love of God to bring brotherhood and peace globally."
Mr. Kalam exclaimed, "Oh, a spiritual group! Good. I don't meet religious people; I meet spiritual people. Spirituality is the post-graduate of religious movements." Then he offered a challenge: that our spiritual movement should bring peace in Gujarat and Kashmir in the next 10 years. That will be a great achievement for the glory of India.
Mr. Kalam was also appreciative of receiving Bhagavad Gita As It Is and Makhan Chora. Unfortunately the official photographer did not arrive on time, and due to security reasons, no one else is allowed to take pictures, so we have no photo.
Their next visit was to the Honorable Vice President, Bhairav Sing Shekhavat. Upon receiving the Janmastami Prasad, he honored Tulasi prasada and exclaimed, "Jaya Gopinatha!" He explained that in his native village of Rajasthan, they worship Gopinatha. When the devotees requested Sri Shekhavat to visit Vrindavan and see the Food for Life programs of Rupa Raghunatha, he happily replied, "That now I have ample time to visit Vrindavan and Hrishikesh!"
The Honorable Deputy Prime Minister, Sri Lal Krishna Advani, was not present in the city that day, so the devotees returned to Vrindavan. The next day, Mr. Advani called Vrindavan asking, "Where's my prasad?" So the devotees returned to Delhi and delivered Janmastami Prasad, Bhagavad Gita, and Makhan Chora to his wife.
Sarvabhauma explained, "Mr. Advani was called to an important meeting before we could reach Delhi, so we met his wife. I spoke to her in her native language and she was charmed. She said she was very interested in visiting Vrindavan and seeing the Food For Life programs of feeding and educating children and providing drinking water in the villages of Vraja. Mrs. Advani expressed her appreciation to Rupa Raghunatha Prabhu for his service."
In service of Sri Sri Krishna Balaram,
Deena Bandhu dasa
© CHAKRA 4 November 2002
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