The shrine created in an agricultural estate in Penal was a flurry of activity at the weekend, as people from across the country journeyed to make offerings to the rock some see as shaped in the image of the Hindu god Ganesha.
Seepersad Jagmohan, owner of the estate, said there was a steady stream of visitors all weekend.
“People came from all over the country to see the stone shaped like Lord Ganesh. They made offerings and said their prayers. They came from as early as 5 a.m.” he said.
“The area is about 250 feet from the road. We had to cut the grass for a walkway. The contractor came and cleared the area. We are trying to get some gravel and put it down so it will be easy to walk through,” he said.
Jagmohan said no Government officials have visited the sacred rock, but he was informed that Prime Minister and Siparia MP Kamla Persad-Bissessar was aware of the find. “We were told that she will visit us to see for herself,” he said.
Pundit Sunil Basdeo said the rock in the image of Lord Ganesha may have surfaced not only to restore faith in God, but as a warning. “This is not really a surprise, but these things occur from time to time not only to reinstill our own faith in God, but really a warning that if we continue to go down the path we are going we have some serious obstacles and challenges to face and we should take stock of ourselves now,” he said.
Another pundit Vinood Maharaj said the milk flowing from the stone signifies that God had manifested on earth. “It is a representation of Lord Ganesh. The stone is the face of Lord Ganesh who is the son of Lord Shiva and Parvati. Lord Shiva is represented by a stone also known as the Shiva Lingam so his son is now being represented as a stone as well in Trinidad,” he said.
Maharaj said the area was now sacred and will become a place of pilgrimage.
Jagmohan said residents would be thankful should Government decide to assist in the construction of a mandir at the site. “This would be great to have a mandir here. We would be thankful,” he said.
Jagmohan said he noticed the rock decades ago while clearing his land to plant crops. “It was flat in the ground. I didn’t come here in about 15 years. I came last month and was cutting the grass when I saw the stone. I moved the grass and saw the eyes and trunk and realised it looked like Lord Ganesha. We started to clean around it and I hit the rock and milk started coming out of it. That was when we decided to make offerings and declare this area sacred,” he said.