Rajat Sharma

Bhoomi Pujan of Ram temple in Ayodhya by Modi marks the beginning of a new epoch

This was the moment more than a billion Hindus across the world had dreamed and were waiting for. The holy city of Ayodhya, the birthplace of one of our great national icons Bhagwan Shri Ram, had never seen such festivities on a grand scale in the last five hundred years.

rajat sir2Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday laid the bricks for the construction of a grand Ram Janmabhoomi temple in Ayodhya, marking the culmination of a five centuries old dispute. In the presence of RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat, UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath and the UP Governor Anandiben Patel, Modi performed the Vedic rituals for Bhoomi Pujan ceremony.

Several hundred prominent saints watched as Modi performed the Bhoomi Pujan rituals amidst chants of Vedic hymns by priests. Earlier, the Prime Minister performed a ‘sashtang pranaam’ (lying face down on the floor) in front of Ram Lalla (the idol of Lord Ram as a newborn child) and also offered prayers to Lord Hanuman at Hanuman Garhi shrine. Modi is the first Prime Minister to perform prayers before Ram Lalla in Ayodhya. He returned to Ayodhya after a long gap of 29 years. Modi had gone to Ayodhya the last time in 1991 during L K Advani’s rath yatra. Among the bricks laid by Modi during Bhoomi Pujan, were two bricks made of stone in 1989 on which Jai Shri Ram is written. A copper plaque sent by Shankarachary of Kanchi Kamkoti Peetham, narrating the construction of Ram Janmabhoomi temple in Sanskrit, was also offered during the ceremony.

There is no doubt that today’s Bhoomi Pujan event marks a historic turnaround in India’s history. It marks the beginning of a new epoch. A five centuries old dispute, seeped in the labyrinthine of history, has come to an end with today’s event.

This was the moment more than a billion Hindus across the world had dreamed and were waiting for. The holy city of Ayodhya, the birthplace of one of our great national icons Bhagwan Shri Ram, had never seen such festivities on a grand scale in the last five hundred years.

Painful memories of agitations in the past by sadhus for the last 500 years for restoration of Ram Janmabhoomi temple, are now part of medieval and modern history. Thousands of people died during these agitations. Some historians have put the toll at around 1,74,000. It is a matter of utmost satisfaction for every Indian that the dispute has finally been resolved to the satisfaction of all parties. Forget flowing of blood, not a drop of tear flowed from anybody’s eyes as the path for restoration of Ram temple was cleared.

This is a big victory for Indian brotherhood and its centuries-old tradition of people of all communities and religions living in harmony. It is a victory for Indian culture that has seeped into our national sub-consciousness over many centuries despite foreign invasions. This, in essence, is the message of today’s historic event. It signifies a call for establishment of Ram Rajya model, a welfare state where people of all castes, communities and religions will have a peaceful co-existence. In other words, it also signifies a march towards the goal of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikaas’, as enunciated by Prime Minister Modi.

In fact, the credit for the peaceful resolution of Ayodhya dispute must go to Narendra Modi, who exercised utmost patience and sagacity in bringing about an end to the dispute. What greater testimony for communal brotherhood is required when the Ram Janmabhoomi Trust sends the Bhoomi Pujan invitation to Iqbal Ansari, son of Hashim Ansari, the original complainant in Ram Janmabhoomi dispute from 1949 till 2016? Another Muslim social activist Mohammed Sharif has also been invited. He performs the final rites of unclaimed bodies in accordance with their religious norms, at his cost.

And there has been an unbelievable turnaround in the outlook of the Congress. Leaders of this party used to describe Lord Ram as a mythical hero from the fables, a warrior from the land of folktales. Leaders from this party tried their best to appeal to the Supreme Court to postpone its verdict till the Lok Sabha elections. A senior leader from this party objected saying today’s muhurta for Bhoomi Pujan was inauspicious. But, on Tuesday, senior leaders of the Congress, from Priyanka Gandhi to Kamal Nath sang eulogies in praise of Lord Ram and welcomed the Bhoomi Pujan, after sensing the national mood. Kamal Nath went so far as to read Hanuman Chalisa in public in Bhopal on Tuesday along with his party leaders.

I can only remark that this is all because of the Ram Kripa (blessings of Lord Ram) and Hari Iccha (wishes of God) that these leaders have turned around and have started thinking on a positive note.

This communal brotherhood that is being witnessed all over the country was possible only because of Prime Minister Modi, RSS and Vishwa Hindu Parishad. They had appealed to the people to exercise utmost restraint and patience on the day Supreme Court delivered its final verdict. Even today, top leaders of RSS, BJP and VHP have appealed to people to celebrate the occasion with restraint and avoid hurting the feelings of the Muslim community. It is in the national interest that all of us should celebrate this occasion peacefully and collectively. This will be a true hallmark of our devotion and loyalty to the teachings of Maryada Purushottam Shri Ram.

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