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Question: On behalf of the Damodardesh Yatra and the UAE Yatra, we want to hear from you Guru Maharaj – you are one of the pioneers here, you are one of the first sannyasis and GBC sannyasis to come here to begin the preaching and plant the seed, as you said, Guru Maharaj, in the Middle East. We wanted to hear from you, few experiences, the first time you came to Damodardesh or anywhere in the UAE or Middle East, and your challenges, your experience then Guru Maharaj.

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Jayapataka Swami: There were some devotees who had been working in the Middle East, and they invited me to different countries. So I went to Balaramdesh. And then Mahamani Krsna Das, he invited me to Damodardesh. So he wanted to preach the Krsna conscious activities, to the expats over here. I remember that at that time, we met in some gurudwara. We went into the hall, with the Granth Sahib, we had to wear a hat. And we had different programs and prasad distribution. They had a temple on the first floor. So then they gradually increased. So finally we have branches in Avtaridesh, Syamadesh, Damodardesh. We have been expanding and now we have it in all the GCC countries. Very happy that you have taken up Krsna consciousness, bhakti yoga and are practicing this. We have got be very careful not offend anyone, and we are trying to give this opportunity to everyone. I think I first came to the Middle East in 1980’s and gradually it has been increasing. I think that there are over 10 thousand devotees practicing now.