In Gujarat, A nine-year-old daughter of a wealthy diamond merchant embraced monkhood on Wednesday, renouncing material comforts. Devanshi, the eldest of the two daughters of Dhanesh and Ami Sanghvi, took ‘diksha’ in the presence of Jain monk Acharya Vijay Kirtiyashsuri and hundreds of other people at a venue in Vesu locality of Surat, a family associate said.
Her father is the owner of Sanghvi and Sons, a nearly three-decade old diamond polishing and export firm in Surat.
The minor girl’s ‘diksha’ — or vow of renunciation — marks her initiation into ascetic life. The ceremony began last Saturday. She will now shun all the material comforts and luxury, which her family of diamond merchants could have provided her.
Family friend Nirav Shah said that Devanshi was inclined towards spiritual life from a very young age and had even walked about 700 km with other monks and embraced their life before formally being initiated into monkhood. She knows five languages and also has other skills, he said. He further said that “Today, she was given ‘diksha’ at a function. The Sanghvis have two daughters — Devanshi is the elder one and she has a four-year-old sister.”
On Tuesday, a day before Devanshi took ‘diksha,’ a religious procession was taken out with fanfare in the city, Shah said. A similar procession was also taken out in Belgium, he added. Several diamond traders from the Jain community have close business links with Belgium.