New Zealand celebrates historic Ayodhya Temple inauguration

By Our Reporter
Pic supplied

Guna Magesan, President of the Hindu Council of New Zealand, has been honoured with an exclusive invitation to the opening ceremony of the Maryada Purshottam Lord Ram Temple in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh, on 22 January 2024. This event, hailed as the ‘Event of the Millennium’, will host 7000 invitees from around the globe, including top Indian officials like Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Uttar Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel, and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.

The Prana Pratishta ceremony, a pivotal ritual in the temple’s inauguration, will take place shortly after midday, witnessed by a select group including Nritya Gopal Das, Chairman of the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust, and Construction Committee Chairman Nripendra Mishra. Professor Magesan highlighted the presence of 4000 seers among the 7000 guests, signifying the global importance of this event.

The temple, which began construction in 2020, stands on a foundation incorporating 500,000 bricks, collected from over 300,000 Panchayats and villages across India. Emphasising people’s participation in its creation, Mr Mishra revealed that the funds exceeding Rs 3500 Crore (about $680 million) were raised through nationwide contributions. Notably, the construction excluded steel, using only stone to ensure durability for up to 1000 years.

Beyond its architectural magnificence, Professor Magesan underscored the temple’s profound spiritual, cultural, and civilisational significance for Hindus worldwide. The inauguration will see spiritual leaders from various faiths and eminent personalities across different sectors, including sports, arts, and academia. Dr Magesan expressed his deep honour in representing New Zealand at this significant event, describing it as a momentous achievement and a blessing.

In line with the celebration, the Hindu Council of New Zealand, in collaboration with the Hindu Organisations, Temples, and Associations (HOTA) Forum, has announced a two-week pilgrimage in April 2024. This journey will allow devotees to visit sacred cities like Ayodhya, Mathura, and Kashi, offering a rich tapestry of spiritual, cultural, and historical experiences. Vinod Kumar, former President of the New Zealand Hindu Council, urged temples and organisations to participate in this inclusive pilgrimage, reflecting the event’s spirit.

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