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Khush Aam-e-Deed | Welcome to all my Kashmiri brothers and sisters

12:30 AM Nov 07, 2023 IST | Eknath Sambhaji Shinde
khush aam e deed   welcome to all my kashmiri brothers and sisters
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I'm delighted to share my thoughts with you. Kashmir has always been my cherished retreat, offering solace from the relentless demands of leading Maharashtra. Even a single day in this serene land rejuvenates my spirit, granting me the strength to govern our great state. Today, I'm here in Kashmir for a special and momentous occasion.

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We gather to inaugurate the statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, a figure revered as a deity in the hearts of the people of Maharashtra. This noble endeavour is a collaboration between the Indian Army's 41 RR and the Pune-based NGO 'Amhi Punekar.'

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As the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, I feel blessed to be here, paying homage to Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, and I firmly believe in his blessings that led me to this esteemed position.
It may seem unusual, but there exists a profound connection between Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and Kashmir.

Allow me to elucidate. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, when swearing to establish 'Swaraj' (self-rule) in Maharashtra, took an oath on a Shivling, showing a strong influence of Shaivism and Sufism, which is still evident in Kashmir today. The ties between Lord Shiva, revered as Mahadev, and Kashmir are well-documented in our Puranas. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's war cry, "Har Har Mahadev," holds a significant connection to Kashmir.

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Shiva and Parvati's son, Lord Ganesha, is venerated in every Maharashtrian household. The Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav, initiated by freedom fighter Lokmanya Tilak over a century ago, remains a grand celebration. I am pleased to note that this tradition also thrives in Kashmir, thanks to the Marathi community living in and around Lal Chowk, with the support of their Kashmiri brethren.

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I had the privilege of witnessing the Ganeshotsav in Lal Chowk this year, and I anticipate the pride that the forthcoming silver jubilee celebration will bring to both Kashmiris and the people of Maharashtra.
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's grandfather, Maloji Raje Bhosle, was a devout follower of Saint Sheikh Mohammad. The spiritual influences of Saint

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Tukaram and Saint Sheikh Mohammad, who were contemporaries, can be traced back to the time of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. The strong bond between Maharashtra and Kashmir has persisted for centuries, with both regions sharing a rich tradition of saints who were influenced by Shaivism and Sufism from Kashmir.

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Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's reign was marked by remarkable principles. He established 'Swaraj,' a people's kingdom that was ahead of its time. He issued strict orders to his army never to harm the agricultural produce of his subjects during war campaigns, in stark contrast to the common practice of destroying crops to weaken the enemy. His profound respect for women, even those from enemy families, is exemplified by an incident involving a daughter-in-law of a Subhedar.

He sent her back with dignity, presenting her with a saree—a testament to his noble rule.
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's inclusivity extended to his army, which included many Muslim warriors in key roles. He respected places of worship, never harming mosques or dargahs during his campaigns. His mission was to challenge oppressive rulers like Aurangzeb, Adilshah, or Nizamshah, not to target any particular faith.

His progressive leadership mirrored the traditions of Kashmir, rooted in Shaivism, Buddhism, and Sufism, which had a profound impact on his values.
Today, the Mahayuti government in Maharashtra strives to follow in the footsteps of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, an arduous task, but one we humbly undertake.

We are inspired by his governance and aspire to elevate Maharashtra to greater heights. I believe that the statue of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj will not only inspire the 41 RR and the Indian army but also the resilient and progressive people of Kashmir.

Jai Hind, Jai Kashmir, Jai Maharashtra.
Eknath Sambhaji Shinde, Cheif Minister, Maharastra

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