NEW DELHI: Winding up his six-day tour to India, Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper visited the Indian tech capital of Bangalore on Thursday – a day prior to his departure for the Philippines.
Harper and his wife Laureen also visited the famous Someshwar temple at Ulsoor.
The Canadian first couple were the given the ceremonial welcome of `aarti’, a shawl and jasmine garlands by the temple priests.
On their arrival at the temple, Harper and his wife were greeted by the minister for Muzrai Kota, Srinivasa Poojari and the Commissioner for Muzrai, Dayashankar.
Walking barefoot, the prime minister and his wife went around the temple – a architectural marvel of Chola, Vijayanagar and Hoysala traditions.
Temple priest Sundar Dixit chanted hymns as the Harpers stood in front of the deities Shiva and Parvathi. They did a parikrama of the temple as the priest blessed them, chanting `dheergayushmaan bhavah’ (May you live long!).
The priest put a shawl around Harper and garlanded him with Mysore’s famous jasmine buds. The prime minister was then given another garland to put around his wife’s neck. And garlanding Laureen, Harper said jokingly that “we are married again,’’ according to the Press Trust of India.
A day earlier, the Canadian prime minister and his entourage had visited the Khalsa Heritage Complex in Anandpur Sahib, near Chandigarh, in Punjab.