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ISKCON: Mayor Gives Green Light to Moscow Temple
By Asia News Wire   |  May 18, 2007

The Moscow mayor has allocated land to the local unit of International Society of Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) to build a temple despite objections by the Orthodox Christians who have threatened to renew their stir against the construction.

"The two hectare plot has been given to ISKCON near a village 10 kilometers away from Moscow and the local unit of the Hindu organisation has been asked to prepare technical documentation for the construction over a total space of 1 hectare," Kommersant daily reported.

Earlier, following protests from the Orthodox Christians in 2005, Mayor Yuri Luzhkov was forced to withdraw the allocation of plot.

"We believe that the mayor has taken a right decision, which suits everyone. We hope that our problems with the construction of the temple are over," ISKCON's Moscow chapter head Sergei Andreyev was quoted assaying by the newspaper.

He did not make a secret that the Moscow mayor had taken the decision to allocate the land to followers of Lord Krishna at the request of Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit, who had last year visited Russia for the Delhi Culture Fest.

"The temple will be built on the one hectare space with the help of donations and it is not ruled out that Henry Ford's great grandson, Alfred Ford, could become its main sponsor," Andreyev said.

However, the Orthodox Christians have threatened to renew the stir against the Krishna temple like in 2003, which led to the annulment of earlier land allocation orders.

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