AYODHYA: The doors of the Ram temple in Ayodhya opened to the general public for the first time on January 23, a day after the consecration of the new Ram Lalla idol.
A large number of devotees, both locals and visitors from other States, gathered near the main gateway along the Ram Path leading to the temple complex late on Monday night, seeking an early entry to the premises the following morning. Police told the devotees that they would only be allowed to enter the temple the following morning when it opens for the public.
Carrying flags bearing the visages of Lord Ram and chanting Jai Shri Ram, the devotees waited for hours in the biting cold on Jan. 23 before the doors of the grand temple opened.
“Felt so delighted, my life’s aim has been fulfilled. Our ancestors struggled for this and it has been brought to fruition. The arrangement should continue like this and the name of Lord Ram should reign for ages,” said Manish Verma, a devotee from Punjab.
Many devotees have been camping in Ayodhya since before the consecration ceremony, having made long and difficult journeys to reach the temple town.
Nitish Kumar, a resident of Bihar’s Madhepura district, cycled more than 600 kilometers to reach Ayodhya. “There is a massive rush but I am hopeful I will get a chance to have darshan today. I will start my journey back once my wish is fulfilled. Though I couldn’t go to the temple on Monday, what a day it was to be in Ayodhya,” he told PTI.