Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in Ayodhya on 6th Nov. 2018 (Photo @myogiadityanath)
AYODHYA (UTTAR PRADESH) — On a spree to change Muslim-sounding names just months before the Lok Sabha polls, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath here on Tuesday announced that the Faizabad district will be known as Ayodhya. Already, Ayodhya is a town in Faizabad. Only last month, Yogi had changed the name of Allahabad as Prayagraj even though the Kumbh area in the district is known as Prayag for centuries.
On Wednesday, addressing a press conference here Yogi announced that a high statue of Ram will be built in Ayodhya. On the occasion of Diwali, the state government has organized a three-day event here.
Since he assumed office in March 2017 after the massive victory of BJP in the Assembly elections, BJP has lost three Lok Sabha seats in the state, including the Gorakhpur seat that Yogi represented for about a quarter century. Other two seats it lost were Phulpur, which was won by Deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya in 2014 and Kairana seat near Muzaffarnagar.
The First Lady of South Korea Kim Jung-sook on Tuesday evening was witness to the lighting of over 3 lakh earthen lamps on the banks of the Saryu as well as the change of name of a district: Faizabad will now be known as Ayodhya.
The grand spectacle is part of the second edition of ‘Deepotsava’ initiated by the state BJP government.
With the lighting up of 3,01,152 ‘divas’, officials said, the spectacle at the ghats of the river had also entered the ‘Guinness book of World Records’. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and the South Korean First Lady also performed ‘aarti’ of the holy river as people clapped and cheered.
The ‘Ram ki Paidi’ was lit up in purple, red and yellow lights and a laser show based on the life of Lord Ram was also displayed for the cheering thousands.
The Korean First Lady earlier laid the foundation stone for a Queen Hau memorial park to be built jointly by the state and the South Korean governments.
Uttar Pradesh will spend Rs 24.66 crore on the ambitious project aimed at increasing foreign footfalls in the temple town and also strengthening the cultural bonds between UP and South Korea.
Adityanath in his address announced the setting up of a medical college in Ayodhya which will be named after the erstwhile king of Ayodhya, Dashrath, and also an airport which will be named after Lord Ram.
The Chief Minister said the identity of the district of Faizabad was Lord Ram and he declared thereafter that the Faizabad district would now be known as Ayodhya.
The first lady of South Korea also welcomed the characters of Lord Ram, Sita, Lakshman as they alighted from a chopper for a special theatrical performance.
— With Inputs from IANS