Ayodhya: Queen Heo Hwang-ok park project likely to be opened during Deepotsav
The Queen Heo Hwang-ok memorial park named after a Korean queen with Ayodhya roots is in the last stage of completion in Ayodhya, where it is undergoing expansion and beautification, and Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath is likely to inaugurate it during the Deepotsav celebrations on the festive occasion of Diwali in the temple town. Diwali falls on November 4 this year and the Yogi Adityanath government has celebrated Deepotsav the day before Diwali in the last four years since 2017.
According to the Ayodhya administration, beautification work will be completed by the first week of October.
The memorial will portray the journey of Princess Suriratna of Ayodhya, who had travelled to Korea and married King Kim Suro and became Queen Heo Hwang-ok in 48 AD. Many Koreans trace their ancestry to the legendary princess. The state government has allocated ₹24 crore for the project.
“The memorial will also depict the cultures of both the countries through various means and journey of the Princess from Ayodhya to Korea,” said Ved Prakash Gupta, the Bharatiya Janata Party MLA from Ayodhya Sadar constituency in Uttar Pradesh.
This park is expected to be a major tourist attraction in Ayodhya. The sea journey of the Princess is being recreated at the memorial with the help of a pond.
The south-east corner of the memorial will have a statue of Queen Heo Hwang-ok and the north-east corner a statue of King Kim Suro. The pond will also have a foot over bridge.
As, according to legend, Princess Suriratna got a golden egg during her sea journey to Korea, the park will also have an egg made of granite.
The South Korean government has also carried out beautification work at the park and developed the King and Queen pavilions there.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and South Korean President Moon Jae-in had signed an MoU (memorandum of understanding) for expansion and beautification of the existing memorial of Queen Heo Hwang-ok, near banks of the Saryu in Ayodhya.
South Korean First Lady Kim Jung-sook was the chief guest at the Deepotsav celebrations in Ayodhya in November 2018.