Shastriji Shiv Kumar Bhat

Vedic Priest in North and South Indian Traditions


Shastriji came to the United States in 1996. He has worked as the Head priest of Hindu Temple in Canton, Michigan from March 1997 to November 2011. Shastriji is multi-linguistic and fluent in English, Hindi, Kannada, Tamil and Tulu, and he can communicate in Guajarati and Telugu also. He can narrate Satyanarayana Katha in eight different languages including Gujarati, Hindi and Telugu.

Shastriji has been fulfilling the religious needs of diverse Hindu community of Michigan and considered one of the most preferred Priest in Detroit area. His devotion, diversity, adaptability, friendly and caring nature is admired by the vast Hindu population of Metro Detroit. He can perform all kinds of Poorva and Apara samskars, Poojas, Grihapravesham, Abhishek, and Havans, and he has performed more than 200 weddings in US, Canada, and Mexico. He has also performed the Murthi Pratishta and Kumbhabhishekam after the rebuilding of Canton Hindu Temple in 2010.

An Accomplished Classical Singer

Shastriji is also an accomplished classical singer. He had his initial training in Puttur from Smt. Malavika. Later he moved to Chennai and studied under Sangeeta Kalanidhi, Padmabhushan Shri B. Rajam Iyer. Now he is under the tutelage of Sangeeta Chakravarty Shri Neyveli Santhanagopalan. He has given several concerts in India and abroad. Shri Bhat and his wife Kasthuri Shivakumar, who is also an accomplished classical singer, are the founders of International Academy of Indian Music. They have organized many community events to promote Classical arts and Indian culture. Shri Bhat has released three albums of devotional Bhajans namely Jay Hanuman, Tere Poojan Ko Bhagvan and Vandana. His CDs of devotional Bhajans helped the Hindu Temple raise more than $30,000 dollars, towards their new temple. A sample of his Bhajans and prayer shlokas may be heard in the Hindu Temple's website through the link

He is an excellent teacher of South Indian Classical music, Sanskrit, Vedic mantras, Bhajans and shlokas.Shastriji intends to connect with the youth through teaching, so that present and future generation can learn and appreciate the rich and invaluable Indian heritage.