Leicester Hindu temple opens with colourful procession

A new £4m Hindu temple has opened in Leicester after a special procession down the city's Belgrave Road.

The Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Belgrave is one of the biggest in the Midlands.

Located on the corner of Catherine Street and Gypsy Lane, it features temple architecture found in northern India.

Temple organisers have worked with residents to ensure congestion in the area would be kept to a minimum.

Gujarati lessons

Celebrations on Saturday and Sunday included prayers, dances, music, decorated floats and the consecration of several Hindu statues.

Spokesman Kirit Patel said: "We've been building up to this moment for a while now, and the Mandir is finally going to be open to all."

The temple will be used for worship, community meetings and Gujarati lessons.

It replaces the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir on St James Street, in the city centre, which had no parking.

London-based charity BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha UK and members of the Hindu community in Leicester have funded the project.

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