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Faizabad district will now be called Ayodhya: Yogi Adityanath

Uttar Pradesh chief minister announces an airport named after Ram, a medical college after Dashrath.

lucknow Updated: Nov 06, 2018 23:39 IST
Pawan Dixit
Pawan Dixit
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Faizabad,Ayodhya,Yogi Adityanath
Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath, chief guest South Korean First Lady Kim Jung-sook, MoS for External Affairs V K Singh and others perform 'arti' of Saryu River during grand Diwali celebrations 'Deepotsav', in Ayodhya on Tuesday. (AP)

Uttar Pradesh’s Faizabad district will now be known as Ayodhya, chief minister Yogi Adityanath announced here on Tuesday.

The district comprises the twin towns of Faizabad and Ayodhya, which the Hindus revere as Lord Ram’s birthplace.

“From now onwards, Faizabad will be known as Ayodhya,” Adityanath said amid loud cheers from around 10,000 people, who had gathered to hear him on the eve of Diwali.

Adityanath had promised “good news,” for the devotees of Lord Ram before the visit. This had led to speculation that he may speak about the issue of the construction of a Ram temple in place of the demolished Babri Masjid in Ayodhya. The Supreme Court had last week deferred the hearing into the case and prompted calls for a law or an ordinance to facilitate the building of the temple at the disputed site.

Adityanath also announced a medical college named after King Dashrath, Ram’s father, will be built along with an airport named after Ram. “I assure you that no injustice will be done to Ayodhya,” said Adityanath, who is also the head priest of Gorakhpur’s Gorakhnath temple.

South Korean first lady, Kim Jung-sook, shared the stage with Adityanath.

Kim laid the foundation stone for the Heo Hwang-ok Memorial Park here earlier in the day. Kim’s visit to India, which began on November 4, has rekindled interest in Heo, the legendary princess of Ayodhya. According to a Korean legend, the princess went to Korea in 48 AD and married King Kim-Suro there. A large number of Koreans trace their ancestry to the princess.

The demand for renaming Faizabad picked pace after the government renamed Allahabad as Prayagraj last month. Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas head Mahant Nritya Gopal Das had pitched for the name change and the Vishwa Hindu Parishad backed his demand.

Bharatiya Janata Party functionaries had said the chief minister was likely to announce the building of a 100-meter tall statue of Lord Ram on the banks of the Saryu River.

Mahant Satyendra Das, the head priest of the makeshift temple at the disputed site, had stressed that Lord Ram’s place was “in a temple and not in the open.”

Demand to rename Agra as Agravan

BJP lawmaker from Agra North, Jagan Prasad Garg, on Tuesday demanded that Agra be renamed as ‘Agravan’. In a letter to the chief minister, he said there were many ‘van’ (forests) and Agarwals (followers of Maharaja Agrasen) in Agra and therefore the city’s name should be changed to ‘Agravan’. “The region was initially known as Agravan and finds such a mention in the Mahabharat. But in the course of time, the city was named as Akbarabad.

Later, it became ‘Agra’, which has no specific meaning and thus its name should be revived to Agravan. I will meet the CM and seek the change in the name of Agra to Agravan,” said Garg.

First Published: Nov 06, 2018 23:11 IST