Dec 1, 2015

Ashram where Beatles stayed to reopen

SMA Kazmi
Tribune News Service
Dehradun, November 30, 2015

To boost tourism, the Uttarakhand Forest Department has decided to throw open the Rishikesh ashram of spiritual guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, where The Beatles, an English rock band, stayed in 1968 for an advanced transcendental meditation (TM) training session. Uttarakhand Forest Minister Dinesh Aggarwal is expected to reopen on December 8 the ashram where legendary singers — John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr — stayed.

Unused for more than a decade after the lease of the spiritual guru expired in 2000, the ashram will be developed as an eco-tourism destination and a pilgrimage place for Beatles fans. With a complete new look, the place may also be used for bird watching and nature walks.

The bungalow of Mahesh Yogi, where the Beatles stars learnt meditation, would be a major attraction. The walls have been covered in graffiti on Beatles and Mahesh Yogi to remind the visitors of the significance of the place.

“The final preparations are on to open the ashram for tourists. Initially, bird watching and nature walks will be introduced,” said Rajendra Nautiyal, Forest Ranger of the area. Mahesh Yogi was allocated 15 acre of the forest land near Rishikesh for his ashram in 1961.The Indian spiritual guru became an international name after the four singers toured India to learn meditation in February 1968.

The Beatles boys came to Rishikesh for three month’s course, but none of them completed it. Ringo was the first to leave after only 10 days. Paul stayed for five weeks, while John and George left after eight weeks.

No comments: