The controversial ‘Pran Pratishtha’ rituals ended at the half-constructed Ram Temple on the site of the demolished Babri Masjid in Uttar Pradesh’s Ayodhya as the Ram Lalla idol was unveiled. The consecration ceremony on Monday was led by Modi, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat besides other priests and dignitaries.
Several Indian celebrities from the sports and film industries rallied to join the event.
Government offices are working only half the day and movie halls are offering live screenings of the event. Army helicopters were used to shower flowers from the sky at the religious ceremony. Leaders of India’s opposition parties were absent from the event which they alleged was politicising religion.
The grand event is considered the launch of Bharatiya Janata Party’s 2024 General Assembly election campaign.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who led the ‘Pran Pratishtha’, said in his address that after a decades-long wait, Ram has finally arrived in Ayodhya.
The Supreme Court of India permitted the construction of the Ram Temple on the site of Babri Masjid, razed down by Hindutva volunteers on 06 December 1992, despite no evidence that a temple existed on the land as claimed by BJP. The consecration ceremony will be the climax of the violent Ram Janmaboomi movement launched by Sangh Parivar in the 1980s that helped BJP shape its politics and assent to power.