Yogi Launches Road Projects For Ayodhya

Yogi Launches Rs 1,000 Cr Road Projects For Ayodhya

The Yogi Adityanath government has approved Rs 1,000 crore road projects for providing better connectivity to Ayodhya where Ram Temple is being built.

These initiatives include land acquisition for road connectivity, rehabilitation of buildings, shop owners, and construction of buildings. With this, all the roads leading to Ram Janmabhoomi will be widened and beautified, creating a beautiful ambience for pilgrims who travel there to meet Lord Ramlala
Keeping in mind the convenience of the devotees, a 0.566 km four-lane is being built from Sugriva Fort to Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Mandir Marg, which has been named Janmabhoomi Path. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath gave his approval in a high-level meeting for the development project, which will cost approximately Rs 83.33 crore in total, including land purchases and other projects.

In addition, Rs 3.90 crore and Rs 27.17 crore have been made available for the construction work. At present, 39 percent of the work has been completed whereas, the work of the pipeline for sewer-water supply by the Jal Nigam is going at a rapid pace.

Utility duct and RCC drain construction are also underway. From Shringar Haat to Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Mandir Marg, a four-lane stretch measuring 0.742 kilometres is also being constructed. The name of its route is Bhakti Path. For its expansion, a number of Rs 62.79 crore has been approved for the purchase of land and other construction work, against which an amount of Rs 32.10 crore has been released.

Altogether 350 shops that were in the way of the construction have received compensation in this case. While 290 shops have been demolished for widening, action is underway on the remaining. This road is being widened to 13 metres, including the 5.50-meter width of the CC road.

Sahadatganj to Naya Ghat Marg road will be known as Ram Path

A 12.940 km long, four-lane road from Sahadatganj to Naya Ghat marg is being built and has been given the name Ram Path in order to facilitate access to the Lord Shri Ram Janmbhoomi temple for devotees.

An amount of Rs 797.69 crore has been approved for the widening of this road, from the purchase of land to other construction work, against which Rs 290 crore has been released. About 40765 square meters of land are needed for Ram Path, against which 4773 square meters of land have been acquired. (ANI)

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Deepotsav A Spiritual Experience

Deepotsav Is A Visual Treat And A Spiritual Experience

Sunil Singh Rana, a teacher from Basti in Uttar Pradesh and a regular visitor to Ayodhya on Deepotsav for several years, shares his experience at the annual event

In the last few years, since I first visited Ayodhya for Deepotsav festival, the city has transformed completely. From a disorganised town, it has now become a next-level spiritual experience. Being witness to lakhs of diyas lighting up in unison is a divine encounter, filling you up with positive energy and devotion.

Over the years, the magnificence of the event is reaching newer heights thanks to the efforts and intent of the present (BJP) government to give Ayodhya a global identity. The grand illumination of diyas across various ghats and temples presents various narrations of Hindu mythology, and the moral teachings from the life of Lord Ram.

With each annual visit, I add new learnings to my understanding of the Ramayana and Dharma. It was here at the Deepotsav that I realised the true meaning of the Vedantic chant Tamaso Ma Jyotir Gamaya (let the light prevail over darkness).

It is also a colour-filled visual delight. The illumination of earthen lamps, fireworks, laser show home decor, rangoli, and a variety of street food on display is an ensemble that is unique to the Deepotsav in Ayodhya. Lined with countless temples, ghats and structures, Ayodhya is a must-visit destination throughout the year, but especially during Deepotsav. With 17 lakh diyas lit across the ghats and the city, the event is again set to break its own Guinness Book record of the previous year.

ALSO READ: Deepotsav 2022 Scripts New World Record

The series of cultural events by noted artists presenting different facets of the Ramayana through Ramleela was also mesmerizing. We also had a chance to see and meet artists like Raza Murad, Ravi Kisan, and Rajpal Yadav during the celebrations who played various roles in the Ramleela.

Besides the police and local administration, the enthusiasm of the ‘Ayodhya-wasis’ was indeed praiseworthy. There were keen to welcome and serve visitors from all around the country and even abroad to make their journey memorable. We never felt as outsiders as the locals thronged every possible corner en route to the ghats to provide all assistance from water, food and resting place to free guide services.

Local shopkeepers also offered tempting discounts to every visitor to ensure that none returned empty handed and carried at least one memorabilia from the city of Lord Ram. The sweet shops and prasad counters were giving away sweets at throw-away prices, which reflected their devotion to the Atithi Devo Bhav principle.

I returned home with loads of fond memories to cherish and I have also taken an oath to be a part of the Deepotsav every year till my last breath. I would also request all the Bhartiyas to visit the holy city at least once in their lifetime.

As told to Rajat Rai

Ayodhya On Diwali Eve

Modi To Visit Ayodhya On Diwali Eve

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will have a jam-packed schedule this festive season with back-to-back visits to Gujarat, Uttarakhand, and Uttar Pradesh which will include a visit to Ayodhya on the eve of Diwali.

The Prime Minister’s visits would cover sectors such as education, environment, spiritual heritage, sports, roads, ropeways, temple rejuvenation, tourism, lighthouse, LiFE, infrastructure, and industries.
His schedule begins with the two-day visit to Gujarat starting October 19. He will dedicate and lay the foundation stone of projects worth around Rs 15,670 crore.

On October 19, PM Modi will participate in five different events. He will inaugurate the DefExpo22 at Mahatma Mandir, Gandhinagar. He will launch the Mission Schools of Excellence at Adalaj. He will lay the foundation stone for various development projects in Junagadh. He will inaugurate India Urban Housing Conclave 2022 and dedicate and lay the foundation stone of multiple key projects in Rajkot. He will also inaugurate the exhibition of innovative construction practices.

On October 20, the Prime Minister will launch Mission LiFE, followed by his participation in the 10th Heads of Missions Conference in Kevadia, after which he will lay the foundation stone of various development initiatives at Vyara.

After concluding his visit to his home state, PM Modi will head towards the spiritual destinations of Kedarnath and Badrinath, where he will lay the foundation stone of connectivity projects worth around Rs 3,500 crore.

The Prime Minister will perform darshan and pooja at Shri Kedarnath Temple and at Shri Badrinath Temple. He will also review the progress of development work at Kedarnath and Badrinath.

On October 22, PM Modi will return from Uttarakhand. Later in the day, the Prime Minister will participate in the Griha Pravesham function of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna (Gramin) beneficiaries in Madhya Pradesh via video conferencing. He will also participate in an important program that will impact youth across the country, details of which will be revealed soon.

On October 23, PM Modi will reach Ayodhya where he will perform pooja and Darshan of Bhagwan Shri Ramlala Virajman followed by an inspection of the Ram Janambhoomi Teerth Kshetra site.

He will attend the Rajya-Abhishek of Bhagwan Shri Ram. Prime Minister will also witness the spectacular aarti at New Ghat of Saryu ji, followed by his participation in the grand Deepotsav celebrations. (ANI)

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Ram Mandir Construction

Ram Mandir Construction In Full Speed: Modi In Ujjain

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said that the grand Ram temple in Ayodhya, whose foundation stone was laid in August 2020, is being built at full speed.

The darshan of Ram Lalla for devotees is likely to be open by December 2023, and the construction work of the Pilgrimage Facilitation Centre, other utilities and infrastructure services in the complex is at a fast pace.
As per the present estimate, the total construction cost of the temple and complex will be approximately Rs 1800 crore.

“The construction of the grand Shri Ram temple in Ayodhya is going on at full speed. Vishwanath Dham in Kashi is adding pride to India’s culture. Record development happening at Somnath, Kedarnath and Badrinath shrines,” said PM Modi at the inauguration of Shri Mahakal Lok in Ujjain.

On August 5, 2020, PM Modi laid the foundation stone for the construction of the Ram temple and since then the construction work of the temple is going on.

The foundation stone for the construction of Ram Temple’s ‘Garbha Griha’ or the sanctum sanctorum of the temple was laid by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in June this year.

The five-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court led by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi (now retired) had on November 9, 2019, unanimously delivered its verdict that the land in Ayodhya where Babri Masjid once stood, belongs to Ram Lalla.

At the inauguration of Shri Mahakal Lok in Ujjain, the Prime Minister said that the glory of Mahakaleshwar was restored.

“We are restoring the glory of spiritual places. Ujjain has been the centre of India’s spiritual ethos. Ujjain is not just India’s geographic centre but also the centre of the country’s soul. There is nothing ordinary in the company of Lord Shiva. Everything is supernatural and extraordinary. Unforgettable, unbelievable,” he said.

Noting that the grandeur of Mahalkal Lok is unparalleled and will add impetus to the global cultural significance of the country, PM Modi said the development of Jyotirlingas is powering India’s spiritual consciousness.

“The grandeur of Mahalkal Lok is unparalleled and this will add impetus to the global cultural significance of the country,” he said.

The Prime Minister said Ujjain has led prosperity and knowledge in India for thousands of years.

“Spirituality is contained in every particle and divine energy is being transmitted in every corner of Ujjain. Ujjain has led India’s prosperity, knowledge, dignity and literature for thousands of years,” said PM Modi at the inauguration of Shri Mahakal Lok in Ujjain.

PM Modi dedicated Shri Mahakal Lok in Madhya Pradesh’s Ujjain to the nation. The total cost of Phase I of the project is around Rs 850 crore.

PM said that the grandeur of Mahalkal Lok is unparalleled and this will add impetus to the global cultural significance of the country adding that Several centres of spirituality are now being renovated.

“During the Azadi Ka Amrit Kaal, we broke the shackles of colonialism with the spirit of Panch Pran. Today, cultural destinations across India are seeing all-around development. For the first time, Char Dham is being connected with all-weather roads,” he said.

The Prime minister said the first time since Independence, roads are developed and an ‘All-weather highway development project’ is undertaken to connect all four Dhams under the Char Dham Project.

“The magnificence of our olden Konark temple, Modhera temple, Brahma Deveshwar temple, and Shankaracharya temple is unmatchable,” he said.

He said that for India, Dharm means completion of Duties and our duties are service to the world, service to humanity. (ANI)

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Hindu Votebank Versus Rule Of Law

‘shraddhaa’, the Hindu sentiment. This parliamentary move to undo a judicial verdict reminds of what transpired 32 years back when law was challenged in the name of faith. Pertaining to the Muslim community initially, it engulfed the whole country. The apex court had then upheld the claim of Shah Bano, a Muslim divorcee, in a suit for maintenance beyond what is mandated in the Sharia. The court had made some observations on failure to enact a Uniform Civil Code as prescribed in the Directive Principles of the Constitution. While these observations came in handy for the BJP that has nursed this issue for long, for the Muslim orthodoxy, this was a direct interference in their faith. Pressures were built on the streets and through lobbying in parliament. The Muslim community did not have (the situation has changed but marginally) a secular leadership, its own clergy doubled up as intermediaries and spokespersons and pressurized the government and Muslim lawmakers. Finding the Congress’ traditional vote challenged, an inexperienced Rajiv Gandhi buckled and brought in the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act 1986, restoring the status quo ante that favoured Muslim men over women. This capitulating before the Muslim orthodoxy and use of the legislative route to overturn a judicial verdict, it was perceived, may not go well with the Hindu voters of the Congress party. To assuage that sentiment, the Rajiv government unlocked the doors of the long-disputed temple in Ayodhya supposedly built on the place where Ram was born. He fell between the two stools and lost the 1989 elections. This triggered a chain of events — BJP stalwart L K Advani’s Rath Yatra (1990), destruction of the 15th century Babri Mosque that stood on the disputed site (1992) and sectarian violence that followed. In its prolonged aftermath, Gujarat witnessed violence under Modi’s watch (2002). India has never been the same again. What we see today is competitive communalism with the Congress pursuing “soft Hindutva” to counter the BJP’s ‘hard’ one. As always happens, the ‘hard’ one sets the agenda. This is evident in Congress President Rahul Gandhi frequently visiting religious shrines during his campaign trails. In Sabrimala’s case, he admits to his party’s stand in Kerala being ‘different’. The Congress does not want to lose the Hindu vote. In Kerala, only the ‘Godless’ communists who rule in “God’s own country” are left, isolated, to uphold the court verdict and protect women who dared to approach the temple, but were turned back. Like Rajiv Gandhi whose government enjoyed the largest ever parliamentary majority, today Modi, too, enjoys a comfortable majority and does not have to worry about being destabilized. But unlike a politically naïve Rajiv who got buffeted by both communities and a Congress that continues to tail BJP while attacking it, Modi and his party seem clear about their aim. They want a fresh electoral mandate for now and beyond that, ‘consolidation’ of the majority Hindu community. By no means confined to sprawling, poorly-developed Uttar Pradesh and the North, the Ayodhya issue contrasts with Sabrimala that is playing out in a highly literate, multi-religious and compact Kerala. Yet, both Hindu and Muslim religious traditions have combined with patriarchal pre-dominance in a significantly matriarchal society. The process has begun elsewhere and cannot easily be stopped. Women are allowed entry in the Haji Ali Durgah in Mumbai although trustees resisted saying the women devotees may “show their breasts while kneeling to pray.”  Those running the Shani Shinganapur temple in Maharashtra’s Ahmednagar district also relented after women forced their way, strongly supported by media and public opinion. These are but individual examples that bear little generalization. Significantly, however, they have emerged from within the community, without the State or politicians’ involvement. Women are gainers as questions are being raised: If the Modi Government can go the whole hog to outlaw triple talaq in support of gender justice for Muslim women, do Hindu women keen to pray at Sabrimala not deserve the same justice? For now, political implications are very many, none too exciting. While Modi talks incessantly about ‘vikas’ , development, his party’s men and women have turned faith into a corrosive force and an expedient tool to win elections. The most charitable thing that can be said, as assessed fairly objectively by Congress lawmaker Shashi Tharoor, is that Modi is caught between his own development platform and pressures from his political and ideological mentors to push a backward-looking faith-based agenda of which the temple in Ayodhya is the core. The development agenda has not worked, or to put it charitably again, not to the expectations Modi generated four years ago. With the economy not doing well – a matter of intense argument and can only be measured in terms of expectations and not what critics and previous governments did or did not – Modi placing his electoral bets on development seems less likely. The pressures to fall back on the temple agenda have increased given the compulsions of a fresh mandate. But they have been hit by the Supreme Court declining to fix until January 2019 a date for hearing the Ayodhya case. In doing that, the court has judiciously diminished the possibility of a final verdict before the next Lok Sabha election. If Modi takes the ordinance/legislation route to expedite Ayodhya and undo the Sabrimala verdict, India will be likely swayed by a combination of faith and a heavy dose of hyper-nationalism, causing a toxic us-versus-you discourse. The author can be reached at mahendraved07@gmail.com  ]]>