On December 10,2020 when PM Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of the new parliament building, the deadline for the completion of the project was October 2022 which was shifted to March, 2023. The March deadline was also not met, but everybody knows that the project is near completion, and the inauguration date could be announced any time and as per expectations 28 May is decided as the date for the inauguration of the new Parliament.

It was not surprising that as soon as the announcement was made, many opposition parties started firing allegation towards government. What came as a surprise for many of us was the pacing of ‘Sengol’ in the new parliament building. Many questions hits in mind one by one. What is Sengol? Where was it all the time? Who made it? What does it signify? Where will it be placed? Don’t worry. Your mind will be free from question related to Sengol after reading this write up as it contains answers to all your question.

The historic ‘Sengol’ that is going to be installed in the new parliament building was received by the first PM of India Jawaharlal Nehru from the then Viceroy of India Lord Mountbatten on 14 August 1947 at around 10:45 PM at his residence in the presence of many other prominent leaders of the time. PM Nehru received this as the symbol of the transfer of power from British at his residence. When the decision of the independence of India was final, Lord Mountbatten was sent as the viceroy to complete the process of independence without hinderance. Mountbatten being unaware of rituals and customs of Indian culture he asked PM Nehru about the special ceremony to be organized for the transfer of power. Nehru discussed this with C. Rajagopalachari fondly known as Rajaji, and after extensive research of Indian culture Rajaji told Pandit Nehru about the tradition of transfer of power during Chola dynasty and how ‘Sengol’ was used to mark this.

The Sengol gets its name from the Tamil word ‘semmai’, meaning righteousness. The sceptre is a historical symbol of Independence as it signifies the transfer of power from the British to the Indians. “The Sengol signifies justice, integrity and unfailing good governance of the king who holds it,” said Mani Maran, a Tamil Pandit at Saraswathi Mahal Library in Thanjavur in an interview given to Times of India on Wednesday. “Tamil emperors like Cholas were usually holding a sceptre in their hands. After crowning the new king, his predecessor or the rajaguru handed over the sceptre during the ceremonial occasion. Thiruvalluvar mentions the sceptre while referring to the rule of law. Sangam works like the Silapathikaram mentions the superiority and importance of the sceptre,” he added. Union Home Minister Amit Shah addressing a press conference on Wednesday said, “The ‘sengol’ represents values of fair and equitable governance.”

The responsibility of arranging a sceptre was handed to Rajaji by Pandit Nehru. Rajaji reached out to Thiruvaduthurai Atheenam, a well-known mutt in Tamil Nadu’s Tanjore district for assistance and its leader commissioned the manufacturing of the Sengol to Chennai-based “Vummidi Bangaru Chetty” jewelers, as per the official document. It was crafted by two men namely, Vummidi Ethirajulu and Vummidi Sudhakar. It is made of silver with a coat of gold. The sceptre is five feet tall and has a ‘Nandi’ bull on top, symbolizing justice and goddess Laxmi is inscribed on it. It was made in 30 days. According to the official documents, the sceptre was handed to Lord Mountbatten by the Deputy high priest of the Adheenam and was taken back. It was then taken to Pandit Nehru’s house in procession and handed over to him. A special song was rendered, as specified by the high priest. The ceremonial sceptre was kept at the Allahabad Museum, along with several other historical objects associated with Jawaharlal Nehru, as part of the Nehru Gallery of the museum.

Now the Sengol has been moved to Delhi and would be placed near the Lok Sabha speaker’s chair in the new parliament building. Citing resources India Today reported that the Sengol will be ceremoniously transported to the House in a grand procession. The occasion is likely to be steeped in Tamil tradition. The Nadaswaram, would lead the procession with a group of musicians will be playing Tamil Nadu’s traditional instrument. Modi is expected to walk along with the procession. “Adheenams,” or priests from Shaivite mutts in Tamil Nadu, will be present in the Lok Sabha’s Well. The priests will sanctify the Sengol with holy water after Modi greets them at the well, India Today added. The “Oduvars,” or Tamil temple singers, will lyrically recite the “Kolaru Padhigam” in the background as the Nadaswaram musicians enchant with their soulful music. The Sengol will be presented to the prime minister after this revered ceremony and placed in a glass case next to the Speaker’s seat in the House.

After decades of anonymity, this holy sceptre will quadruple the magnificence of new parliament building. and always remind us of the hardship that our forefathers had while fighting for independence and will motivate us to defend this independence.

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