Ayodhya: Ayodhya, the holy city of Lord Ram, is all set to dazzle the world with its spectacular Deepotsav on the eve of Diwali. The city has been adorned with nearly 24 lakh earthen lamps, which will light up the 51 ghats along the river Saryu and create a new world record.
The Deepotsav, which has been organized by the Uttar Pradesh government in the Ram temple region since 2017, has become a major attraction for devotees, tourists, and dignitaries from across the globe. This year, the event will witness the participation of envoys from more than 50 countries, who will join the state’s chief minister Yogi Adityanath, governor Anandiben Patel, and other VVIPs in the festivities.
The celebrations began this morning with a Shobha Yatra, a procession of 16 tableaux depicting various episodes from the Ramayana. The yatra was flagged off by the state’s deputy chief minister Brijesh Pathak, who said that the Deepotsav will showcase the rich cultural heritage of Ayodhya and India.
“The envoys of more than 50 countries will attend this event today. All hospitals are on alert mode in case any incident takes place due to the bursting of firecrackers,” he told ANI.
Another deputy chief minister, Keshav Prasad Maurya, said that Ram Leela artists from different parts of the world, along with several other guests, have arrived in the city ahead of the Deepotsav program.
The highlight of the event will be the recreation of the homecoming of Lord Ram, Sita, and Lakshman by Pushpak Viman after 14 years of exile. The scene will be enacted by actors on a specially designed stage at the Ram ki Paidi, where the 24 lakh diyas will be lit by the chief minister and the governor.
The district administration has spent Rs 20 crore to arrange a spectacular light-and-sound show, which will be projected on a cloth held by two steel pillars, each 65 feet high. The show will narrate the story of Lord Ram and his victory over evil.
The security arrangements for the event have been tightened, with the area divided into 14 police zones and artificial intelligence used for surveillance. The VVIP enclosure has been checked with a dog squad at the Ram ki Paidi.
The Deepotsav is also a unique opportunity for the general public to be part of the event by contributing Rs 51 for a diya and Rs 1,100 for 51 diyas that would be lit on the Ram ki Paidi. The e-Deepotsav initiative of the city’s administration has received a positive response from people, who have registered online to sponsor the diyas.
The Deepotsav celebrations come ahead of the Pran Pratishtha ceremony of Lord Ram’s idol at the city’s grand temple, scheduled for January 22, 2024. The temple’s construction is underway after the Supreme Court’s historic verdict in 2019, which paved the way for the resolution of the decades-long dispute.
The Deepotsav is a symbol of Ayodhya’s glorious past and bright future, as the city aims to become a global destination of faith, culture, and tourism.