Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, on Tuesday, chaired a cabinet meeting with a portrait of the ‘Mahakaal’ deity taking the centre stage. Chouhan said, “It is Mahakaal Maharaj’s government which is the king here… all his servants have come for a meeting on Mahakaal Maharaj’s soil.”
For the unversed, Mahakaal is a reincarnation of Lord Shiva and is believed to be the ‘King’ of Ujjain. The Madhya Pradesh Cabinet on Tuesday also decided to name the newly-developed Mahakaleshwar Temple corridor ‘Mahakal Lok’.
The cabinet meeting by CM Chouhan was held ahead of PM Modi’s October 11 visit to the city to inaugurate the first phase of the Rs 856- crore Mahakaleshwar Temple corridor development project in Ujjain, located around 200km from the state capital Bhopal.
This was for the first time when a state cabinet meeting was organised in Ujjain, which houses the famous temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The first phase of the project has been completed and the Prime Minister will dedicate it to the people on October 11, said state Home Minister Narottam Mishra, who is also the state government spokesman. Mishra said the cabinet also approved a proposal for the development of the existing airstrip in Ujjain. An amount of Rs 41 crore was sanctioned for land acquisition and another Rs 39 crore for expansion of the airstrip so that it could be converted into a full-fledged airport.
Addressing a meeting of the organising committee looking into the PM’s programme, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said he had first conceived the development plan of the Mahakaleshwar temple during the last Simhastha (Kumbh Mela) organised in 2016. Chouhan said there will be a local holiday in Ujjain on October 11, when the PM will dedicate the new corridor to people.
According to officials, the development of ‘Mahakal Lok’ includes a mid-way zone, a park, a multi-storied parking lot for cars and buses, solar lighting, a facility centre for pilgrims, a mega entry gate, water pipeline, and sewer line, among other works. A lighting and sound system has also been developed along with the installation of 108 pillars showcasing Shiv Tandav shlokas as well as 52 murals depicting various stories. Several other statues have also been constructed, they said. The Mahakaleshwar Temple is one of the 12 ‘jyotirlings’ in the country and gets devotees throughout the year.