LUCKNOW: It is now certain that the ‘bhoomi pujan’ ceremony to be held before the commencement of the construction of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya will be a three-day affair from August 3.
The seers and saints of Ayodhya have come up with an elaborate plan of Vedic rituals which will begin on August 3 and culminate in 'bhoomi pujan' on August 5 at the Ram Janmabhoomi premises in Ayodhya.
Sources said the possibility of PM Narendra Modi's presence in the 'bhoomi pujan' ceremony in the temple town on August 5 cannot be ruled out.
As per Mahant Kamal Nayan Das, heir to Mahant Nritya Gopal Das, chairman of Sri Ram Janmabhoomi Teertha Kshetra Trust, the time for 'bhoomi pujan' -- 12.15 pm on August 5 -- for the Prime Minister was decided according to the Hindu calendar. However, an official communication from the Prime Minister’s Office for his Ayodhya visit was yet to be released, said the Mahant.
Meanwhile, key trust sources claimed that BJP stalwarts including LK Advani, MM Joshi, Uma Bharti, Kalyan Singh and others who have been associated with the temple movement are likely to be invited for the foundation laying ceremony in the temple town. Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray may also be invited for the ceremony. However, the trust would ensure that not more than 50 leaders are invited.
Vedic rituals for ‘bhoomi pujan’ will start from August 3 with special puja of Lord Ganesha. Next day, the priests will perform Ramacharya ‘puja’ and on the last day (August 5) ‘bhumi pujan’ will be performed.
An 11-member team of priests (Acharya) from Varanasi and Ayodhya will perform the three-day rituals. Priests from Varanasi, which is the parliamentary constituency of Prime Minister Modi, will have a prominent role in the ceremony.
If Modi decides to come to the temple town for the ‘bhoomi pujan’ ceremony, it will be his first visit to Ayodhya after becoming the country’s PM. On his maiden visit to Ayodhya, Modi is likely to remain in the temple town for two hours.
“The PM’s visit will be short and will only be confined to bhoomi pujan,” said Mahant Nritya Kamal Nayan Das. UP CM Yogi Adityanath will also be present on the occasion. The bhoomi pujan would be done adhering to the COVID-19 protocol.
According to members of the trust, PM Modi is also likely to announce projects for Ayodhya worth several thousand crore during his visit. The CM has directed officials to prepare a plan for Ayodhya’s holistic development to be forwarded to the Centre.
This plan might include some old proposals of the Uttar Pradesh government along with new proposals. It may be pointed out that the Centre has already approved several development projects for Ayodhya.
Notably, the temple trust members had met in Ayodhya last Saturday where a set of dates for Bhoomi Pujan were reportedly sent to the PMO for picking one. Sources claimed that the PM gave his nod to August 5.