Prime Minister Narendra Modi initiated the 'Ram Naam Mantra Lekhan Yagna' in Gandhinagar on 30 October. During this campaign, devotees would inscribe the name of Lord Ram in notebooks at the Ram temple situated within the precinct of the Somnath temple in Gujarat.
The inscribed notebooks, referred to as pothis, are intended to be sent to the under-construction Ram temple in Ayodhya for its inauguration on 22 January of the following year.
This campaign, marking 33 years since BJP patriarch L K Advani's Ram Rath Yatra from Somnath, aims to involve devotees in the sacred act of writing Lord Ram's name.
The Shree Somnath Temple Trust, overseeing the Somnath temple and several other shrines, has placed 10 pothis in the Ram temple in Somnath for this purpose, Indian Express reported.
Interestingly, during the pendency of the Ram-Janmabhoomi Babri Masjid title suit, the Trust had constructed its own Ram temple near Triveni Sangam, opposite the Somnath temple, inaugurated in 2017.
According to the Trust's statement, a bus service has been arranged to transport devotees from the Somnath Temple to the Ram temple in Ayodhya at regular intervals.
Special books and scribes for writing the name of Ram have been provided, and arrangements have been made to offer food to every devotee participating in the inscription.
Gujarat's BJP leaders see this campaign as part of the party's efforts to create a festive atmosphere in every village on 22 January.
Zaveribhai Thakrar, a former RSS functionary and state BJP secretary, said, “Lord Ram lives in the hearts of everyone. The inauguration of the Ram temple in Ayodhya will mark the triumph of a 576-year-long fight. Advani embarked on Ram Rath Yatra to ignite the spirit of Hindutva among people and that effort still continues. There should be celebrations in every village. We are grateful that the Trust, via its yagna, has decided to supplement such efforts.”
Yogendra Desai, the Trust's secretary and officer on special duty at Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel’s office, emphasised that the campaign's core idea is to connect the maximum number of people to the Ram temple in Ayodhya. Writing the name of Ram at Somnath temple is deemed significant, given the historical association of Lord Ram, Lakshman, and Janaki with the Prabhas Kshetra, as mentioned in the Skandh Purana.
So far, around 7 lakh inscriptions of Ram’s name have been written by devotees, making the campaign immensely popular. Hitendrasinh Rajput, a VHP spokesperson in Gujarat, welcomed the initiative, expressing gratitude that a political figure in a constitutional post is spearheading such an effort.
A BJP leader from Saurashtra anticipates that the Ram Naam Mantra Lekhan Yagna campaign will gain momentum as the day of the Ram temple inauguration draws nearer, transforming into a significant mobilization tool.
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