Ayodhya: Ram Janmabhoomi Temple

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Contents

Highlights of the temple

As on the eve of its inauguration

Rajiv Srivastava & Shalabh, Dec 10, 2023: The Times of India

Highlights of the Ram Janmabhoomi Temple
From: Rajiv Srivastava & Shalabh, Dec 10, 2023: The Times of India

See graphic:

Highlights of the Ram Janmabhoomi Temple


A little over four years after a Supreme Court order paved the way for the construction of Ram Temple at Ram Janmabhoomi in Ayodhya, the first phase of the project is almost ready. It’s a Nagara-style temple, designed by a team under well-known architect Chandrakant Bhai Sompura.


The temple’s primarily built of pink sandstone and carved marble from Mirzapur and Bansi-Paharpur in Rajasthan. Besides, 17,000 granite stones, each weighing 2 tonnes, have been used in it. “So far, 21 lakh cubic feet of granite, sandstone and marble has been used in the construction of the temple,” says Champat Rai, general secretary of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust. 


Built For Eternity


On experts’ advice, steel and ordinary cement have not been used in the temple’s construction. The foundation, laid after consultations with IIT Chennai, is 12m deep. The soil used for refilling the foundation can get converted into stone in 28 days, and a total of 47 layers were laid in the foundation. Rai says the temple will not require any repairs for at least 1,000 years and even a 6.5 magnitude earthquake won’t be able to shake its foundation.


Interestingly, all the bricks donated during and after the 1992 ‘Shila Daan’, and the stones brought for carving to Ayodhya’s Karsevakpuram by Vishwa Hindu Parishad in the past three decades have been used in the temple’s construction. 


2 More Phases To Go


Construction committee chairman Nripendra Misra had set a December 15 deadline for completing the first phase – the ground floor where the sanctum sanctorum is situated.
The second phase, including the first and second floors, all the murals and iconography work, lower plinth and engraving on around 360 massive pillars, will be finished by December 2024. The first floor will have the Ram Darbar, and each pillar will have 25-30 figures carved on it. Seven temples of Maharishi Valmiki, Vishwamitra, Nishad, Shabri, etc, will also be built outside the parkota (outer wall) next year. 
In the third phase, the 71-acre site, including auditoriums and the parkota that has bronze murals and temples of Saptarishis, etc, will be completed by December 2025. 


Ram Idol An Enigma


Before the January 22 consecration ceremony, the temple trust will select one of the three idols of Ram Lalla (5-year-old deity) being carved in secrecy at three different locations in Ayodhya. The chosen idol will be installed in the sanctum sanctorum in the presence of PM Narendra Modi, and the public will be able to have darshan of the deity after the morning of January 27.


In an interview to TOI, Misra, former principal secretary to PM Modi, had said the three sculptors of the Ram Lalla idols were invited to Ayodhya along with their choice of stone. While one brought white Makrana marble, the other two brought a greyish stone from Karnataka that’s popularly known as Krishna Shila.


These and all other types of stones meant for idols were tested at the government’s National Institute of Rock Mechanics. Only then were the sculptors asked to start work.


All three idols will be 51 inches tall, with a bow and arrow in hand. Together with the pedestal, the height of each idol would be around 7 feet, which, experts say, is needed for the devotees to have darshan from a distance of 25 feet.


Another optical highlight of the temple is a system to divert and reflect sunlight on the idol’s forehead at 12 noon on every Ram Navami. It has been designed by the Central Building Research Institute in Roorkee and the astrophysics institute in Pune

A timeline

DARSHAN FROM JAN 27, 2024

2019


Nov 9 | Five-judge SC bench orders disputed 2.77-acre plot be handed to a trust for building Ram Janmabhoomi temple. Court orders that an alternative 5-acre plot be given to Sunni Waqf Board elsewhere for building a mosque 


2020 


Feb 5 | Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust set up by Centre per SC order with 15 members : 9 permanent and 6 nominated, all ‘practising Hindus’

Feb 6 | Centre makes token Re 1 donation to trust to start construction 


Feb 19 | First meeting of trust held in Delhi elects Mahant Nritya Gopal Das as its president and VHP general secretary Champat Rai as secretary. Nripendra Mishra, former principal secretary to PM Narendra Modi, named chairman of temple construction committee


Mar 15 | UP CM Yogi Adityanath leads ceremony to shift Ram Lalla idol from makeshift temple to a prefabricated one 


Aug 5 | PM Modi performs Bhumi Pujan for temple; construction starts


2021 


Jan 15 | Donation drive begins with former President Ram Nath Kovind. Trust has raised approx. Rs 3,500 cr 


2022 


June 1 | UP CM Adityanath lays foundation stone for temple’s sanctum sanctorum 


2023


Oct 25 | PM Modi confirms presence for leading consecration ceremony of temple on Jan 22, 2024 


2024


Jan 22 | Consecration ceremony 
Jan 27 | Temple likely to be opened to public 
December | Second phase comprising first and second floors likely to be completed 


2025 


December | Third and final phase comprising seven other temples, including to Surya, Shankar, Ganpati, and Bhagwati on four corners of temple complex, outer wall, etc. to be completed

Ram Lalla Idol

Selection of

Shalabh, January 7, 2024: The Times of India

LUCKNOW: The idol of Ram Lalla to be installed in the Ram temple's sanctum sanctorum is "shyamal (dark)" in complexion and in standing posture, temple trust general secretary Champat Rai said in the first such disclosure by an office-bearer of the organisation.

Going by the statement of Rai, also the vice-president of VHP, it is likely the "chosen" idol will be one of two made by Karnataka sculptors Arun Yogiraj and Ganesh Bhatt.

"Its height from toe to eyebrows will be 51 inches," Rai said.

On December 29, all 11 trust members had voted to select the idol from among three in contention. While one has been crafted out of white makrana marble from Rajasthan by Satyanarayan Pandey, the other two are crafted from dark Karnataka granite stones.

A creation of either Arun Yogiraj or Ganesh Bhatt, both Karnataka sculptors, will make the final cut and be installed in Ayodhya’s Ram Temple, a statement by temple trust general secretary Champat Rai has made clear. The chosen idol will be placed in the sanctum sanctorum for the “pran pratistha (consecration)” ceremony.

The Karnataka idols have been made from “shyam shilas (dark stones)”. One has greyish and bluish hues, while the other is darker. According to Rai, the stone used in the chosen idol will not be affected by water, milk and other offerings. “Also, if someone consumes that water or milk, it will not have any side effects on the person,” Rai said. The same goes with the temple, Rai said, adding that no such temple has been built in north India in the past 300 years, according to construction engineers. He remarked that though the age of the temple stones is 1,000 years, sunlight, wind and water will not be able to affect it as a layer of granite has been installed below, preventing absorption of moisture.

“Iron has also not been used in the temple as it weakens the structure. It has been designed in such a way that as the age increases, a very strong rock will be formed under the ground. No type of concrete has been used above ground, because the age of concrete does not exceed 150 years,” Rai said.

The pran pratistha ceremonies will commence from January 16 and after a nagar yatra — chariot tour around Ayodhya — the idol will be permanently placed in the sanctum sanctorum of the temple on January 18. On January 22, it will take over as Ayodhya’s presiding deity with a formal consecration in PM Modi’s presence.

On Chaitra Shukla Navami (Ram Navami) every year, the rays of the Sun would smear the lord on his forehead (surya tilak), Rai said, adding due respect will be given to the other two idols, too, and these would be used by the temple trust.

B

51-inch idol of 5-yr-old Ram picked for Ayodhya

Statue Made Of Black Stone By Mysuru Sculptor

Shalabh@timesgroup.com


Ayodhya : It's official. Mysuru sculptor Arun Yogiraj’s shyamal(dusky) vision of five-year-old Ram Lalla, a 51-inch-tall figure in black stone, was unanimously selected on Monday by 11 trustees of Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra as the idol that will be placed in the sanctum sanctorum of Ram temple on January 18. The consecration is scheduled for January 22.
General secretary Champat Rai confirmed what TOI had reported on January 7 at a presser in Ayodhya. But the world won't get a glimpse of the idol within the main temple until the consecration a week from now.


Rai said the idol's pran pratistha would be done during the auspicious ‘Abhijeet Muhurta’ from 12.20pm to 1pm. Starting Tuesday, Kashi-based Vedic scholar and priest Ganeshwar Shastri Dravid will oversee and anchor a team of 121 acharyas tasked with performing the rituals leading to the main event.

Laxmikant M Dixit, also of Kashi, has been picked as the principal acharya.
The trust said most of the ceremonies would be completed in advance. The temple authorities are contemplating regulating darshan of Ram Lalla's idol in the existing makeshift temple on January 20 and 21 to enable proper preparations for the main event, which will have around 8,000 high-profile guests.

Adornments

January 23, 2024: The Times of India

The idol of Ram Lalla, Pran Pratishtha, before and after
From: January 23, 2024: The Times of India
Ram Lalla's ornaments, in detail
From: Hemali Chhapia, January 24, 2024: The Times of India


➤ Idol has 14 jewellery pieces, including mukut, tilak, emerald & ruby rings, short round necklace, panchlada (five-layered necklace), kamar and baju bandh (waist & arm belt), kangan (bangle), pag kada (ankle band)


➤ 18,567 round diamonds, 2,984 rubies, 615 emeralds & 439 uncut diamonds in all


➤ 1.7kg gold mukut has 75 carats of diamonds, 135 carats Zambian emeralds, 262 carats rubies

Tax exemptions for Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust

HC overrules CIC order to give information on tax exemptions to trust

March 2, 2024: The Times of India


New Delhi: Delhi high court has set aside a Central Information Commission (CIC) order directing the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) to furnish information on tax exemptions given to Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust, which is looking after construction and management of Ayodhya’s Ram temple. The information was sought by one Kailash Chandra Moon dra under Right To Information (RTI) Act.


Justice Subramonium Prasad, however, said it was always open to applicant (Moondhra) to approach the appropriate authority under Income Tax Act to seek the information. HC had earlier this week allowed CBDT’s petition challenging CIC’s Nov 30, 2022, directive. CBDT, in its plea, sought quashing of CIC order, asking it to provide in formation to the RTI applicant within 15 days.
Contesting the CIC order, CBDT submitted before HC that the information about an assessee cannot be given under RTI Act in view of section 138(1)(b) of Income Tax Act. TNN

See also

Ayodhya

Ayodhya: Ram Janmabhoomi Temple

Ayodhya constituency

Ayodhya (Babri Masjid/ Ram Janambhoomi)

Ayodhyawasi Bania

Ayodhyawasi Jain emple, Ayodhya: As on the eve of its inauguration

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