Massive influx of devotees inundate Ayodhya; over 2.5 lakh take darshan of Ram Lalla on day two

UP govt reviews crowd management, advises VIPs to inform temple visit a week in advance; 48-day Mandalam Pujan to perform ‘sanskars’ of child deity commences
Ram Mandir a cold winter morning amid fog, in Ayodhya, Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2024.
Ram Mandir a cold winter morning amid fog, in Ayodhya, Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2024.(Photo | PTI)

LUCKNOW: Two days after the enthronement of Ram Lalla in his abode, devotees turned up in large numbers to inundate the temple town, braving the chilling cold wave sweeping north India, to get a glimpse of their revered deity.

Over 2.5 lakh people took darshan of Ram Lalla, attired in cascading green Banarasi poshaak, till Wednesday, with many still awaiting their turn in queues.

As per the Shree Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kheshtra Trust, the time for daily darshan has been fixed from 6 am to 10 pm daily. Amid tight security arrangements, the devotees had thronged the temple gates in large numbers since early Wednesday morning.

Notably, around 5 lakh people took darshan on Tuesday, when the temple was opened to the public.

Amid the huge rush of devotees in Ayodhya, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath held a meeting with officials in Lucknow to review the steps taken for crowd management and advised VIPs planning to visit the temple to inform the state government or temple trust about their visits a week before scheduling them.

"A multitude of devotees from across the country are flocking to Ayodhya Dham, eager to catch a glimpse of their revered deity, Lord Shri Ram. Given the extraordinary influx of VIPs and distinguished individuals, it would be appropriate for them to inform the local administration, Shree Ram Janmbhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust, or the Uttar Pradesh Government a week in advance before scheduling their visit," the statement quoted the CM as saying.

According to Director General (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar, a better queuing system for the devotees coming for darshan was put in place, and the situation was under control. Roadway buses plying from Sultanpur and other adjoining districts to Ayodhya were stopped for crowd management. The roads leading to Ayodhya witnessed a huge rush of vehicles.

Ram Mandir a cold winter morning amid fog, in Ayodhya, Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2024.
'Glittering' Ram Lalla adorned in unique ornaments, featuring gold and other gems valued in crores

Meanwhile, the worship of Lord Ram consecrated in garbh griha has started with the rituals being followed all this time, including five aartis throughout the day.

A 48-day Mandalam Pujan comprising rituals related to the 'sanskars' of child deity as per the Hindu pantheon commenced late Tuesday evening.

The Mandalam Pujan comprises Abhishek (coronation), Havana, and the simultaneous rendition of various scriptures by high priests from Kashi and South India.

Under the direction of Kanchi Kamkotipeetham Shankaracharya Shri Vijayendra Saraswati ji Maharaj, the ‘Mandalam Pujan’ is being led by Peethdheeshwar of Pejawar Muth of Udupi Jagatguru Madhavacharya Swami Vishwa Prasnna Teerth, who is also a member of the Shree Ram Janmbhoomi Teerth Kheshtra Trust. The Mandalm Pujan is also being attended by temple trust treasurer Mahant Govind Dev Giri.

According to sources, 15 high priests and acharyas of Kashi and South India are participating in Mandalam pujan, which is being held in the third phase of temple rituals.

The first phase started on November 22, 2020, with the commencement of construction of the temple structure. It ended with a 'purnaahuti' on January 15, 2024.

Under the second phase, the idol of Ram Lalla was consecrated with a week-long ritual that started on January 16 and concluded with the enthronement of Lord Ram as a five-year-old boy in the sanctum sanctorum after ‘Chakshu Unmilan’ on January 22, 2024.

The third phase started with Mandalam Pujan on January 23.

Moreover, a ‘Ragotsav’ is on the cards and will start on January 26 and continue till March 10.

Ragotsav will witness renditions of different Ragas of Indian classical music. The program will have well-known classical, Bollywood and folk singers perform to entertain King Dashrath's son, Ram Lalla.

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