Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday led the ‘Pran Pratishtha’ rituals as the Ram Mandir was inaugurated in Ayodhya. The first pictures of Ram Lalla (infant Lord Ram) were revealed soon after.
Ram Lalla’s idol has been adorned in gold and emerald jewellery. The idol was placed at the temple last week, and his face – albeit with the eyes closed – was revealed later. Today, the full face was revealed to the world after the scarf covering the eyes were removed.
The Prime Minister entered the Ram temple a few minutes prior to the rituals began amid massive celebration.
Before PM Modi’s arrival at the venue, Indian Airforce helicopters showered flower petals over the Ram Mandir premises in Ayodhya. The city in Uttar Pradesh has been in a festive mood over the past few days, with ‘Jai Shri Ram’ chants among devotees and posters of Lord Ram lining the city.
The “ Pran Pratishtha” ceremony began at 12.20 p.m. following which Mr. Modi addressed a gathering of more than 7,000 people, including seers and prominent personalities, at the venue. “Today, our Ram has arrived. After a long wait for ages, our Ram has arrived,” PM Modi said, adding that “Our Ram Lalla will no longer live in a tent. Our Ram Lalla will stay in a magnificent temple.”
The consecration ceremony was held after the first phase of the temple’s construction, made possible by a Supreme Court judgment in 2019 on the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title suit. The Hindu litigants argued that the Babri Mosque was constructed at the site of a temple marking the birthplace of Lord Ram. In 1992, the 16th-century mosque was demolished by “kar sevaks”.
BJP veterans Uma Bharti and Sadhvi Rithambara were pictured embracing each other and getting emotional before the ‘Pran Pratishtha’ rituals. Meanwhile, earlier in the day, the news came that BJP veteran LK Advani will not be attending the event due to extreme cold. All the three BJP leaders were part of the Ram Mandir movement.
PM Modi, who announced earlier this month about performing 11-day rituals before today’s inauguration of Ram temple, entered the sanctum sanctorum of the Ram temple before participating in the rituals.
The opposition parties were also invited to today’s Ram Mandir inauguration, but they declined the same, calling it “politicising” the event and using it as a weapon before this year’s Lok Sabha elections.