• Wednesday, February 28, 2024


Prayers mark Ayodhya Bhoomi Pujan in UK

A Hindu devotee performs a ritual while offering orayers to Hindu deity Ram for the groundbreaking ceremony of the Ram Temple in Ayodhaya, in Mumbai on August 5, 2020. – Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi took centre stage on August 5 at a ceremony laying the foundations for a temple at a flashpoint holy site exactly a year after imposing direct rule on Muslim-majority Kashmir — twin triumphs for his Hindu nationalist government. (Photo by Sujit Jaiswal / AFP) (Photo by SUJIT JAISWAL/AFP via Getty Images)

By: Sarwar Alam

Several temples and members of the Indian diaspora in the UK marked the Bhoomi Pujan ceremony for Ram Mandir in India with prayer ceremonies on Wednesday.

The groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of the temple took place on Wednesday in Ayodhya with prime minister Narendra Modi performing the ‘bhoomi pujan’ of the temple.

With COVID-19 lockdown restrictions still in place to curb large crowds at places of worship in Britain, many of the temples continued to make use of digital media to mark prime minister Modi leading the ceremony to lay the foundation stone for the new temple.

The National Council of Hindu Temples, a representative body for over 150 temples in the UK, claimed that nearly every temple in the country was marking the occasion in the form of prayers and kirtan.

“We have been getting messages from around the UK and most temples will be conducting artis and lighting lamps to mark this great moment,” said a spokesperson for NCHT UK.

The Hindu Forum of Britain, another representative group for British Hindus, has called on people to light lamps and chant in their homes on Wednesday evening to commemorate the occasion.

“In the evening to signify Bhagawan Ram’s return to his very own Ayodhya, decorate your homes and light lamps and make it a poignant and memorable day,” said Trupti Patel, in a message to British Hindus as President of the Hindu Forum of Britain.

“The decision to rebuild the divine abode of Bhagwan has brought joy in the hearts of hundreds of million devotees,” she said. A spokesperson for Hindu Council UK described it as a “very momentous day for the Hindus”.

“We would like to congratulate Hindus and devotees of Shri Ram on this important day of the ground-breaking for construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya. This temple will strengthen peace and harmony among the communities. As prime minister Shri Modiji said, Shri Ram is the common thread of unity in diversity,” the spokesperson said.

“British Hindus are elated today seeing Bhagwan Ram returning to his Janambhoomi Ayodhya, bringing back his ideals the world needs always to aspire to,” added Anil Bhanot, a founding member of Hindu Council UK, who has reissued a compilation of Ram mantras on social media for British Hindus to mark the occasion.

According to the 2011 census of England and Wales, British Hindus are estimated as the fourth-largest religious group in the country comprising over 800,000 residents.

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