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Ayodhya all decked-up

Modi to lay foundation stone of the ‘majestic’ Ramjanmabhoomi temple in Ayodhya.

Statesman News Service | New Delhi |

In what will be the fruition of ruling BJP’s one of the major promises, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday will lay the foundation stone for the construction of a ‘majestic’ Ramjanmabhoomi temple in Ayodhya, amid chanting of mantras and an elaborate Bhoomi Pujan’ ritual.

Modi is likely to be in Ayodhya for about three hours.

The rituals will begin sharp at 12:15 in the afternoon. It will be his first visit to the shrine of Ramlalla (Child incarnation of Lord Ram) since assuming office as the Prime Minister of India in 2014. About 175 dignitaries and 135 seers will be around the Bhoomi Puja venue at the time of performance of the rituals by Modi. Prominent dignitaries who are expected to witness the religious function include RSS chief Mohan Bhagwar and his deputy Bhaiyyaji Joshi, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Governor Anandiben Patel besides top VHP leaders and members of Shree Ramjanmabhoomi Tirath Khetra Trust, entrusted with the responsibility of construction of the Ram temple. As per official itinerary, PM Modi will fly from here at 9.35 am in the morning by a special Indian Air Force aircraft and will reach Lucknow at 10.35 am.

From Lucknow he will board an IAF chopper and reach Ayodhya at the Saket College Ground at 11.30 am. He will then visit Hanumangarhi temple and worship for 10 minutes before leaving for Ramjanmabhoomi at 12. At the site of Ramlalla temple construction he will plant a sapling.

Modi will join the Bhoomi Pujan at 12.30 pm. He will stay put at the venue for 90 minutes and address the gathering thereafter.

He will leave for Lucknow from Saket College Ground at 2.20 pm in the afternoon. It is a common knowledge that Ramjanmabhoomi temple movement spearheaded by the Vishnawa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and RSS with tacit and direct support of top BJP leadership including L K Advani, Dr M M Joshi, Uma Bharati have helped BJP gain both politically and electorally.

Narendra Modi was part of the Ramjanmabhoomi temple movement at its earlier stages when he had joined L K Advani in his 10,000 km long Rath Yatra from Somnath, Gujarat, on 25 September 1990. He was then seen with Advani atop his Rath along with Pramod Mahajan.

Modi was then the organizational secretary of the BJP’s Gujarat unit. Modi also reportedly visited the site in 1991 during Ram Janmabhoomi movement but mostly avoided visiting the site during election campaigns even when he was in the city. Construction of a ‘Bhavya’ or ‘majestic’ Ramjanmabhoomi temple in Ayodhya has been a prominent part of the BJP’s electoral manifesto and political agenda. According to an estimate, the temple is likely to take about three to three-and-a-half-years to build. Interestingly, the completion of the construction works for the grand Ramalala temple will also coincide with the conclusion of PM Modi’s second term in office and the 18th Lok Sabha elections.