Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a public function laid the foundation stone of the ‘Shree Ram Janmabhoomi Mandir’, to be built on the site of the former Babri Mosque, at Ayodhya today.
"Like August 15, today's day holds a similar significance for crores of people who devoted their lives for the cause of Ram temple," Modi said at the ceremony which was also attended by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Governor Anandiben Patel.
Terming August 5 a 'golden day' and stating that Ram Janmabhoomi stands 'liberated', CM Yogi Adityanath said that the temple construction is a moment to "showcase new India to the world, which does not discriminate on basis of caste and creed".
Prior to the function, the prime minister took part in the ‘pooja’ and ‘darshan’ at Hanumangarhi Temple. He also unveiled a plaque and released a commemorative postage stamp on ‘Shree Ram Janmabhoomi Mandir’ on the occasion.
The site of the temple had long been claimed by both Hindus and Muslims as sacred ground. In 1992, members of a Hindu group demolished the 400-year-old mosque on the site, sparking riots that left nearly 2,000 dead and a religious dispute that lasted for 27 years.
The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party had carried out a long campaign for a temple to be built on the spot. In November 2019, the Supreme Court of India ruled that the disputed land would be handed over to a government-run trust for the construction of a temple.
Here are pictures from the foundation-laying ceremony in Ayodhya.
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