Varanasi, July 26 (IANS) The three-day International Temples Convention and Expo 2023 (ITCX) rounded up on Tuesday evening at the Rudraksh Convention Centre in Varanasi.
One thousand and ninety-eight delegates from 32 countries converged to participate and present on the knowledge-sharing platform that featured talks, sessions, and case studies on the organization, management, and administration of temple ecosystems.
The event aimed to project best practices for temple management with a new-age and modernized approach to benefit the end consumer aka the pilgrim.
Giresh Kulkarni, founder of Temple Connect and ITCX 2023, and his team spent the last six months visiting temples, collating management pain points, and creating research
The convention was inaugurated by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat along with founders of the convention, Giresh Kulkarni and Prasad Lad (Chairman, International Temples Convention & Expo 2023 and Member Of Maharashtra Legislative Council).
The audience witnessed launches, best practices of temple security, and insights into diverse temple operations, including a case study on Ayodhya Ram Mandir by Vishal Singh, IAS Municipal Commissioner, talk on Jain Temples conducted by Naimish Shah, Seth Anandji Kalyanji Pedh, and another one on Pandharpur was given by Gahininath Maharaj Ausekar, Co-Chairman, Vitthal-Rukmini Mandir Samiti.
Gaurang Das Prabhuji of ISKCON gave a special address on ‘Empowering the Temple Ecosystem’. Meenakshi Sunderam (Retd IAS) also shared her takeaways during a talk on the traditional management of Tamil Nadu Temples.
The highlight launch was the introduction of the Smart Temples Mission, which takes inspiration from the Smart City missions led by governments to improve a city. It offers to conduct audits and initiatives to empower even the temple-dependent ecosystem.
Taking a cue from langars at gurudwaras, the ITCX also launched a food distribution initiative called Annadan initiative by Temple Connect.
The last day’s sessions began with a keynote address by Milind Parande, Secretary General, Vishwa Hindu Parishad who spoke about the power of temple ecosystems and an overview of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir’s transformation. Sayali Lad, Founder & CEO, Volksara spearheaded a featured ‘Session on Cyber Surveillance and Technology in the Temple Ecosystem’ followed by a talk on ‘Temple Infrastructure’ by Shri Vishram Deo. Later in the day, Pragya Kewalramani. gave the keynote address on Temple Administration & Management, Temples of Rajasthan.