Washington, DC: The Jain Society of Metropolitan Washington DC has celebrated Mahavir Janma Kalyanak (birth of Lord Mahavir) on April 29.
Over 650 people gathered at High Point High School MD to celebrate the 2611th birth anniversary of Jain Prophet Lord Mahavir and “The Jain way of life.” The event featured theatrical performances emphasizing the Jains and Jain way of life.
The highlight of the celebration was Nemi-Rajul skit, a performance that brought all the participants together on the stage and in the auditorium. The results were absolutely spectacular as performance after performance was met with thundering applause from a packed auditorium. In all over 15 different quality presentations were made. Over 120 children participated in the performances.
The program also featured a fundraiser for construction of a new temple over a 5.35-acre facility in Beltsville MD. The plans include the construction of a temple (Shikharbandh Mandir), as well as a community facility that will host various events. The project is expected to take three years to complete at a cost of $5 million. During the program, several members announced their pledges for the temple.
Bhupesh Mehta, president of Jain Society of Metropolitan Washington DC, said: “The tremendous support by the volunteers and member pledges truly displays the community commitment for the new temple. The contributions received from the members will help accelerate the process to build a historic site in the Washington metropolitan area.”
Dr. Gita Shah, chairperson of Board of Trustee, said: “I am very privileged to announce that the whole event to celebrate Mahavir Jayanti was well organized. I appreciate the hard work of our president and his wife, along with the entire executive team and volunteers. Presentations by children and adults were amazing. I also appreciate all the donors.”
Rupen Shah, director of Public Relations Committee, said: “On this historic occasion, we are thankful to our community leaders, who have taken time off their busy schedule to come and celebrate this event with us.”
Dr. Rajan Natarajan, the Deputy Secretary of State of MD, said: “On behalf of our Governor Martin O’Malley, Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown and Secretary McDonough, it is my distinct honor to participate in this celebration and Jain way of life. I extend my warm greetings to all of you.”
Brigadier Bhupesh Kumar Jain, defense attaché to the Embassy of India, Washington, DC, said: “As a fellow Jain, it is a very pleasant sight to see our children doing these great things. On behalf of Ambassador Nirupama Rao, Ambassador Arun Kumar Singh and all members of the Embassy, I wish the community all the happiness on this joyous occasion.”
Over 100 volunteers rose to the occasion by providing necessary help with logistics management, technology, costumes, dances, VIP hospitality, food management and member registrations.
JSMW was established in 1980 to provide a forum to foster friendship and unity among all faith groups.