Ram Mandir inauguration: Mauritius grants special 2-hour break to Hindu officials

In a significant move, the Government of Mauritius has decided to grant a one-off special leave for two hours to public servants of the Hindu faith on January 22, 2024. This leave is being given to let the Hindu public servants in Mauritius attend prayers marking the inauguration of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya.

This image of the Ram Lalla idol was shared on Poush Sankranti (January 15, 2024) by Shri Ram Janmbhoomi Teerth Kshetra, the official trust for the Ram Mandir construction in Ayodhya. The caption read: “Divya Darshans of Bhagwan Shri Ram Lalla, along with his brothers – Ayodhya Dham, Paush Maas, Shukla Paksh, Chaturthi Tithi, Vikrami Samvat 2080”. Photo courtesy: X/@ShriRamTeerth

The Pran Pratishtha at the Ram Temple will be attended by Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi and other senior leaders. The ceremony will be telecast live.

“Cabinet has agreed to the grant of a one-off special leave of two hours on Monday 22 January 2024 from 1400 hours to public officers of Hindu faith, subject to exigencies of service, in the context of the inauguration of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir in India, which is a landmark event as it symbolises the return of Lord Ram in Ayodhya,” said a recent statement from the Mauritian Cabinet led by Prime Minister Pravind Kumar Jugnauth.

3D image of the Ram Mandir in Ayodhya. The temple will be three-storeyed. There will be a Ram Lalla (Ram as a child) idol in the main sanctum and Shri Ram Darbar on the first floor. Photo courtesy: X/@ShriRamTeerth

Hinduism is the largest religion in Mauritius, with Hindus representing approximately 48.5 per cent of the population in 2011.

The island nation of Mauritius is part of the African continent, located in the Indian Ocean off the southeastern coast of Africa. Mauritius is the only country in Africa where Hinduism is the most practised religion.

In terms of percentage of the total population, the nation ranks third globally in the prevalence of Hinduism, following Nepal and India.

Hinduism came to Mauritius when Indians were brought as indentured labour to colonial French territories, and later in much larger numbers to British plantations in Mauritius and neighbouring islands of the Indian Ocean.

The migrants came primarily from Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and Andhra Pradesh.