21 January, Vellore, Tamil Nadu – Bharata Yatra 2018
Traveling from Madurai, Amma arrived in Vellore, a city in the north eastern part of Tamil Nadu. It was her first visit to the city.
The city’s name, Vellore, has a special meaning associated with it. In Tamil, the word ‘vel’ means spear, which is the weapon of Murugan, and the word ‘oor’ means place. As the legend goes, Lord Murugan was a tribal hunter who appeared in a lotus pond to attack his enemies. Thus, the city of Vellore is known as the place where Lord Murugan appeared.
Upon her arrival on the stage, Jalakandeswarar Temple priests welcomed Amma with Poornakumbham and Vedic mantras. A huge crowd gathered at the SunBeam school grounds to greet Amma and listen to her words.
Tamil Nadu Governor, Banwarilal Purohit, and Marutha Raj were in attendance. MP garlanded Amma when she arrived on stage for the program. Honoring her inaugural visit to Vellore, the Governor had this to say about Amma, “Mata Amritanandamayi Devi has been spreading love and peace, not only in India, but throughout the world. The essence of her teaching is simple—the creation and the creator are not different. Since we are all created by the same creator, it is necessary to make a little space in our hearts for others. Love for humanity and for all beings is the message that Amma is propagating. Also, Amma has been propagating gender equality and women’s empowerment. I am sure, the entirety of humanity will be benefited by Amma’s venture aimed at the sustenance of friendship and togetherness without any discrimination or barriers.”
As a token of her gratitude, Amma gifted working capital to the AmritaSree Self-Help Group and gave out saris to its members.
The program was a long one, with temperatures dropping as low as 17 degrees in the city of Vellore, which is perched 709 ft above sea level. People waited in the cold, open air for the opportunity to receive Amma’s warm embrace.
During the darshan, many local devotees presented cultural programs.
The darshan finished at 8:04 AM the next morning, and without delay, Amma got back on the road in order to make the journey to Chennai for the next program.