LUCKNOW: After 9 lakh clay lamps — ‘diyas’ — came to life the evening before Diwali, the Ram Ki Paidi by the Saryu river bank in Ayodhya was a sea of lights and colours, setting a new Guinness world record for the greatest display of oil lamps.
The light show was part of the Uttar Pradesh government’s Deepotsav celebrations, which included sky-lit firecrackers and laser displays.
Following the Supreme Court’s 2019 judgement in the Ram Janmabhoomi – Babri Masjid dispute, three lakh additional diyas were lit in Ayodhya town, where a big Ram temple is being erected.
The state administration set the goal of 9 lakh diyas this year after roughly 6 lakh were lighted during the previous Deepotsav celebrations, which was also a Guinness World Record.
It is the government of Yogi Adityanath’s fifth year of Deepotsav celebrations in Ayodhya, and the last before the vital Assembly elections early next year. District Magistrate Nitish Kumar had previously stated, ‘The endeavour is to pray for a better future for Ayodhya and the entire globe.’
People are seen lighting diyas on the riverbanks in images supplied by the state administration. Many people can be seen watching the light show from the bridge that connects the two banks. People have also been observed lighting ‘Om’-shaped diyas.
The laser shows, which have been on display daily for the past four days and brought colour to the warm glow of the clay diyas, represent chapters from Ayodhya’s history.
The administration made substantial security precautions for the event. Barricades have been erected to keep the gathering under control, and security forces have been deployed in significant numbers.
The temple town and the vast plans for it are at the forefront of the ruling BJP’s political positioning ahead of the forthcoming state elections and the general election in 2024, when the temple is anticipated to be completed.