His Holiness Siddharth Swami Maharaj appeared in 1942 in Raigarh district of Chathisgarh, India. Since he is from a village which has very strong root in Krishna consciousness , he is a natural vaishnava devotee from the childhood. He joined Krishna conscious movement in 1975 at Mumbai. He received initiation from Srila A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupad, the founder Acharya of ISKCON at Vrindavan and later he was also awarded brahminic initiation by Srila Prabhupad. He had been fortunate to have very close association with Srila Prabhupada. He was a pujari in Sri Sri Radha Rashbihari temple in Juhu for 18 years out of which, 15 years as head pujari. He also preached extensively in United States for 10 years.
In 2001, he shifted to his home state as per the earlier instruction from his Guru Maharaj Srila Prabhupad. He set up a small temple in 6 acres of land in Raipur, the capital city of Chathisgarh. He is now engaged in building a big temple, a 25 crore project, at the same site which is scheduled to be inaugurated soon.
He is one of the authorized diksha gurus of ISKCON. In the year 2010 which was 500th of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu accepting Sannyas, Maharaj was awarded Sannyas by His Holiness Gopalakrishna Goswami Maharaj. During last 8 years, he is extensively preaching in several parts of India including Kerala & Hyderabad. Maharaj is comfortable in giving lectures in Hindi. He can manage to communicate in English as well.
Maharaj had been a householder (grihastha) for a short duration. Due to some reasons, he could not get along well with the grihastha life. He migrated to Mumbai in pursuit for a suitable job and was successful in finding some jobs. But Krishna had a different plan for Maharaj. In 1975, Maharaj happened to buy some books written by Srila Prabhupad from a book distributing devotee in Mumbai. Maharaj was deeply moved after reading the books and decided to meet Srila Prabhupad and visited Juhu temple. Devotees informed that Srila Prabhupad was out of India at that time and was expected to be in Mumbai in one week. Devotees advised Maharaj to join temple and serve. Maharaj did so. After five days, , Srila Prabhupad arrived in Juhu temple and Maharaj could meet Srila Prabhupad. Later, he got initiated by Srila Prabhupad. Maharaj had participated in many activities like ‘bile gadi’ (bullock cart) book distribution campaign lead by HH Loknath Swami Maharaj during his stay in India before he moved to West. Maharaj was chosen as the bile gadi driver by Srila Prabhupad as he was the only one person who had knowledge of riding bullock carts among Srila Prabhupad’s disciples, due to having a farmer back ground. We can hear such interesting stories and Prabhupad Leelas in Maharaj’s lectures included in this website and in YouTube.
In 1977, Srila Prabhupad disappeared from this material world. Maharaj continued his service as pujari, cook, book distributor etc. in India. In 1979, he was advised by the concerned ISKCON authorities to relocate to Montreal temple in Canada and he served there as pujari, cook, keerthan singer, book distributor. After two months of stay in Montreal temple, Maharaj moved to Toronto Radhakrishna temple in Canada and continued there for one month. Then, he moved to Radhagovind temple in New York USA. As the first result of his preaching service there, he made 3 people to take life time membership of ISKCON. After three weeks of stay in New York, Maharaj moved to New Vrindavan temple in West Virginia to attend the temple opening ceremony. After a few days stay there, he went to Berkely temple in California and served there as pujari, cook etc. for 15 days. Maharaj had a dream wherein Srila Prabhupad advised him to relocate to Juhu temple in Mumbai. Surprisingly, His Holiness Gopalakrishna Swami Maharaj also advised him the same. Before returning to India, Maharaj visited Los Angeles Temple and stayed for 3 days. Then he went back to New york temple and stayed there for one week. Later he moved to Montreal. He stayed there for one week and then flew to London. He visited Bhaktivedanta Manor in London. After staying there for 3 days, it was time to fly back to Mumbai. To go to London airport, Maharaj caught a train which was running in opposite direction of airport. Later when he somehow reached the airport, his flight was already taken off. Next flight was only on next day and he decided to spend one day in the airport itself. At the waiting hall, he preached some sardarjis working in the airport. Sardajis were too impressed and booked a hotel near to airport for Maharaj to spend the night. Next morning, they arranged fruits, juice etc. for Maharaj. Please note how Krishna protects his devotee. Maharaj flew to Mumbai in the next scheduled flight.At Mumbai temple, he continued as Pujari till 1982. Then, he was once again advised to move to USA. He served in West Virginia temple for 4 years and later served in New York temple till 1990. Meanwhile, he secured US citizenship.
In 1990, he returned to Mumbai Juhu temple and continued up to 2001 as head pujari. In between, he had been visiting his home state Chattisgarh and had been conducting preaching activities in Raipur. In Oct 2001, he permanently relocated to Raipur. He had already secured 6 acres of land in Raipur from Sri Munnalal Sukhla Srimati Surjadevi Trust as a donation to build the temple. Maharaj thanks the Trust for their great vaishnava seva and remembers HG Dadhi Bhaksha Das Prabhu, HG Padmanabha das prabhu and HG Bhakthi Surendra Prabhu who were involved in the discussion with the above Trust and in the process of securing the land. A small temple was built in this land in 28 days. The deities were made in Jaipur and were ready before 6 months of deity installation. HG Bhakthi Surendra Prabhu helped Maharaj in all these activities. On the auspicious day of 01-Nov-2001, the deities of Sri Sri Radha Rasbihariji were installed in the temple. These deities are considered as one of the most beautiful Radha Krishna deities of ISKCON. The deities were made under close monitoring and guidance of Maharaj. Maharaj was very keen on the face beauty of the deities. On the deity installation day, 20 devotees from Mumbai and 15 devotees from Vrindavan participated and assisted Maharaj. From 01-Nov-2001 onwards for one month, Maharaj himself was the pujari in the temple. Later HG Yathupathi Das prabhu was brought to help Maharaj. After some days, HG Dinadayal Das Prabhu and HG Padmanabha Das Prabhu joined the temple and assisted Maharaj for few months.
Maharaj started 3 preaching centers at Jagdalpur district, one center at Radhagovindji temple at Boregao, one center at Raigarh district, another one at Bilaspur handled by HG Srimati Purnam Mataji. At Raigarh (which is birth place of Maharaj), the center is having Jagannath deities taken care by HG Vraja Mohan Das Prahbu (who is Maharaj’s younger brother cum disciple) and his wife HG Sachi Mata Devi Dasi. Boregao center is managed by HG Nandkishore das ( disciple of HH Radhagovind Maharaj) and his wife HG Ganga devi dasi (disciple of Maharaj). Maharaj visits all these centers once in a month. Maharaj visits Kerala once every year since many years. Maharaj started Sunday programs in Raipur temple as part of preaching in Raipur. Maharaj conducted Jagannath Rathyathra in 2002 in Raipur with the presence of HH Gopalakrishna Goswami Maharaj and many devotees from Vrindavan and Mumbai. Jagannath deities for the Rathyathra was brought from Vrindavan.
A goshala was started as part of Raipur temple in 2004. In 2005 on Radhashtami day, the second Bhumipuja in the same temple land was conducted for the new temple construction. In 2005, Shilanyas for the new temple was carried out and the boundary wall was built in Apr 2006. However, the new temple construction could not be started in full swing because of financial crisis.
In 2006, Ashram was built for devotees’ accommodation near to the existing temple. In 2006, on Akshaya trithiya day, the new temple construction was restarted which was on hold due to financial crisis. Due to loose soil at the foundation, the piling work took one year to complete. 156 pilings were done which turned out to be very expensive. In 2007, a bullock attacked Maharaj near the goshala. Maharaj was hospitalized for 2 weeks and he had to take bed rest for 6 months in Ashram. During this period, the temple work was stopped till 2008. The work was restarted with the construction of the guest house for the new temple. In 2009, the temple construction work was restarted. Now the temple construction work is going on in full swing. For more temple details, please visit the “Sri Sri Radha Rasbihariji temple” page in this website.
Maharaj is now extending his preaching activities in middle east countries such as Oman, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain. Also he visited Singapore recently. Wherever he goes, the audience gets enthralled by his divine lectures filled with humour and many pastimes of Sri Radha Krishna. Due to his very simple and down-to-earth nature, he would capture the heart of anyone who associates with him.