Haridwar: Yoga guru Ramdev today visited Kedarnath on the invitation of the Congress-led government in Uttarakhand, saying he had accepted the invite in the "interest of the state and the country".
"(Chief Minister Harish) Rawat invited a baba to visit the dham of another baba (abode of lord shiva), he extended a hand and I held it. They took a good step forward on the auspicious occasion of Dipawali and I matched the step by accepting their invitation in the interest of the state and the country," Ramdev told reporters here immediately after his return from the Himalayan shrine.
Expressing satisfaction over the reconstruction work done en route to Kedarnath, he said people can now undertake the char dham yatra fearlessly.
Asked whether he will accept such a gesture from Sonia Gandhi and Rahul also, the yoga guru said it is necessary that after elections "paksha and vipaksha work for the nation in a neutral way".
Ramdev and his officials arrived at the Himalayan shrine in two choppers earlier and performed a puja.
Asserting there is no country more beautiful than India in the world and Uttarakhand contributed to it in a big way, he said tourism activities in the hill state will be promoted with assistance from the Centre.
"I will speak to Modiji and everything will be done to give a new dimension to tourism in Uttarakhand and make it a truly divine land," the Yoga guru said.
"If he (Modi) were not PM, he would have been a saint living a life of total renunciation.
"The Prime Minister has always been passionate about the ancient Himalayan temples located in Uttarakhand and I am sure he will do something for them," Ramdev said.
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Lok Sabha Speaker extends Diwali greetings
New Delhi: Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan today greeted the people on the eve of Diwali.
"I extend my greetings and best wishes to the citizens of India and abroad on the auspicious occasion of the festival of lights - Deepawali," she said in her message.
Mahajan said the festival symbolizes not only victory of good over evil and light over darkness, but also reflects and reinforces the values and virtues of brotherhood, justice and righteousness.
Keeping in view the traditional Indian values 'Vasudhaiv Kutumbakam' meaning the whole world being a family, we must also strive to imbibe and spread these eternal values to make our country and the world a cleaner, happier and healthier place to live in, she said.