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People of Indian heritage raise saffron flags, celebrate Ayodhya’s ‘bhoomi pujan’ in Washington

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People of Indian heritage from in and around Washington DC gathered outside the Capitol Hill to celebrate Ayodhya's bhoomi pujan ceremony. (Photo/ANI)

By Reena Bhardwaj
Washington [US], Aug 5 (ANI): As Ayodhya awaits the foundation stone laying of Ram temple, Indian-Americans are making sure that these celebrations echo in the US.
Celebrating the ‘bhoomi pujan’ (ground-breaking ceremony) of the proposed Ram temple in Ayodhya, people of Indian heritage from in and around Washington DC gathered outside the Capitol Hill. Raising saffron flags and chanting “Jai Shri Ram”, people from all walks of life including children, teenagers, women and elderly went around the Capitol Hill and the White House on Tuesday evening.
The highlight of the celebration was the ‘Ayodhya Sri Ram Mandir Tableau’ that ferried between the US Capitol Hill and White House. The organisers told ANI that their celebrations are marking the beginning of the historic temple construction that is considered as one of the holiest sites for billion strong Hindus.
Similarly, the Indian American community in New York is doing their bit to join the celebrations in India. Images of Lord Ram and 3D portraits of the Ram temple in Ayodhya is expected to be beamed across the giant billboards in the iconic Times Square on August 5 at 10 am EDT (local time).
Some civil rights organisations and advocates are rallying to protest against the events and have described it as a display of “Hindu fascism”. However, Jagdish Sewhani, President of the American India Public Affairs Committee told ANI that they continue to make arrangements and confirmed that the Hindu community will celebrate the Ram temple by leasing billboards on Times Square, including the giant Nasdaq screen, which would purportedly be used to beam the words Jai Shri Ram, along with images of Ram and of the temple.
The exact cost of the billboards is not known but runs into thousands of dollars per day.
Hindu temples across the US in states like California, Washington, Texas and Florida have announced special events to celebrate the foundation laying ceremony of the historic Ram Temple in Ayodhya. Special pujas and prayers will not be just performed in temples alone, in fact, a large number of Indian-Americans said that they will be lighting diyas at home to celebrate the ‘bhoomi pujan’ of the Ram temple.
The much-awaited foundation stone-laying ceremony of the Ram temple in Ayodhya will take place amid much fanfare on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to perform a ‘puja’ at the Hanuman Garhi temple and Shree Ramlalla Virajman before performing the ‘bhoomi pujan’. (ANI)

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