On May 28th, our beloved PM Mr. Modi, inaugurated the new parliament building. On this momentous occasion, a historic golden Sengol (Sceptre) was also placed next to the speaker’s chair in the Lok Sabha. The Sceptre is usually a symbol of righteousness and is used for transfer of power. This particular Sengol was crafted by the famous jewellers of Chennai Vummidi Bangaru Chetty in 1947.
History of the Sengol
When India gained Independence on Aug 15, 1947, Rajaji a senior Congress leader suggested to the first PM of India Mr. Nehru that the transfer of power can be done in the traditional Chola fashion. The transfer of power during the Chola period was sanctified by Shaivite priests and a sceptre was passed on to the new King.
Rajaji then approached the Madurai Aadheenam for a Sengol. That’s when Sri Ambalavana Desika Swamigal, the high priest of the Thiruvaduthurai Aadheenam, got this 5 foot Sengol crafted by Vummidi Bangaru Chetty.
It was presented to Pandit Nehru by the Aadheenam. Once the ceremony was done the Sengol was forgotten till danseuse Padma Subramaniam spoke about it in a TV program. It was found at Anand Bhawan, Pandit Nehru’s ancestral home that’s now converted into a museum. Titled as a walking stick, it would have passed into oblivion, but thankfully it was recovered.
Note : The loose translation of Aadheenam is a monastery and the high priest is also called as Aadheenam.
While there is an uproar about several high priests from 20 different Aadheenams being invited for blessing the new building, the protestors need to know that Aadheenams are a non-Brahmin Shaivite order 😁. The uproar is because many people assumed that every priest is a Brahmin while that’s far from the truth. Feel free to take umbrage over a non-Brahmin priest … that’s how little we know about our own history and religion. It’s believed that the Madurai Aadheenam was founded by Bhagwan Shiva and Devi Parvati. It was revived by the great saint Thiru Jnanasambandar.
Krishnan and I watched the entire proceedings with a lot of pride and satisfaction. Finally we are unshackling ourselves from symbols of our colonial past, one by one. The old Parliament building was inspired by the Chausath Yogini Temple, Mitaoli, but everyone had forgotten all about the Chausath Yogini temple. The old building was designed by Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker and the Colonial Brits used it as The Imperial Legislative Council from 1927.
Besides the fact that it was a colonial era building, there was an urgent need to have a modern building with all the latest gadgetry.
Watch our beautiful new Parliament building from the inside –
A new India needs a new Parliament !! This new building actually shows our ability to execute mega projects in the shortest possible time. It has taken just 2.5 years to make this four storied building spread over 13 acres.
Some pictures from the inauguration on May 28th –