Ram temple trust on Covid shadow, gifts for Mandir | Ayodhya Ground Report
Ahead of the extravagant foundation-laying of the new Ram temple in Uttar Pradesh’s Ayodhya, Hindustan Times national political editor Sunetra Choudhury spoke to Prakash Sharma, an official of the Ram Janmabhoomi Teertha Kshetra Trust, which is overseeing the construction of the shrine. He justified the timing of the event, saying that Covid protocol will be followed. He also gave examples of other festivals celebrated under the cloud of Coronavirus, such as Bakr Eid and Ram Navami. Sharma also commented on the unique gifts or donations received by the trust for the temple’s ‘bhoomi pujan’. He said that water and soil from rivers, seas and places considered holy had been sent to the temple town to consecrate the new structure. Although he didn’t reveal the total amount of monetary donations received so far, Sharma said that public participation has been enthusiastic and wide-ranging, with even rickshaw pullers donating what they could, for the temple. On August 5, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will lay the foundation stone and mark the beginning of construction of a structure much-awaited by many Hindus. Other dignitaries who will attend the ceremony in person include Sarsanghchalak of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh Mohan Bhagwat, and Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath. Ahead of the event, the Covid outbreak has emerged as a major concern with multiple priests, and other staff like fire officials, testing positive for infection. Watch the full video for more.