Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday hailed the ongoing Simhastha Kumbh, saying the festival, which is part of India's age-old traditions and culture, gives a new direction to society.
Addressing the concluding session of the three-day International Vichar Mahakumbh during the Simhastha mela, Prime Minister Modi said, "First of all, I want to bow to all saints and seers who are here today. What is happening here is the birth of a new effort, a modern edition of what would have happened in the yesteryears."
"The Kumbh mela gives new direction to the society. It is part of our age-old tradition and culture. Can we not tell the world about the organising capacity of an event like the Kumbh," he added.
The Prime Minister also appealed saints to hold Vichar Kumbh every year with devotees and discuss issues like the need to plant trees or educate the girl child.
"Let's hold a 'Vichar Kumbh' with the devotees and discuss why we need to plant trees, educate girl child. The 51 elixir points of this Simhasth declaration will start new discourse not only in India but around the world," he said.
"We belong to a tradition where even a Bhikshuk says, may good happen to the person who gives me and even the person who does not. Working selflessly towards welfare of all is the real way of life," he added.
Calling the Kumbh as the biggest example of excellent management, he advised academic institutions to adopt Kumbh as a case study. He also used the occasion to praise the Election Commission for organising elections in a nation as big as India with many voters.
In his address on the occasion, Prime Minister also called on everybody to look within and see how all can grow themselves.
"A 'holier than thou' attitude is taking some people towards conflicts, he said. Referring to the time when crossing the seas was considered unholy, he said, that has changed. Likewise, some traditions can also change with time," he said.
The Prime Minister along with Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena also released 'Simhastha Declaration'.
The Sri Lankan President spoke about the long standing relations between India and Sri Lanka on the occasion.