The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) is preparing for one of the largest pan-India initiatives ever undertaken by the organisation. They plan to distribute 'akshat' (rice) to approximately 25 crore households nationwide from 1 to 15 January. This outreach is in anticipation of the Ram temple consecration in Ayodhya on 22 January.
The concept behind the 'grih sampark abhiyan' campaign is to involve every home in the consecration ceremony. This is achieved by encouraging individuals to commemorate the event from their residences and plan a visit to Ayodhya once the temple is accessible to the public.
According to the Times of India, the 'swayemsewaks' assert that the sanctification ceremony, attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and 7,000 other notable figures, will be the largest event for the Sangh Parivar.
Considering the scale of the ceremony, the RSS has enlisted the help of its office bearers and employees from all 36 of its branches, which include the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, Mazdoor Sangh, Bharatiya Janata Party, and Vidya Bharati.
Prior to the consecration, the Sangh Parivar initiated a significant campaign to gather "samarpan nidhi" or funds for the Ram temple, following the Supreme Court's approval for the temple's construction in Ayodhya.
According to RSS prant prachar pramukh Dr Ashok Dube, the campaign reached approximately 12.5 crore households for donation collection, covering a population of around 65 crores.
Dube announced that the campaign for distributing 'akshat' as an invitation mark for the consecration ceremony and public visit to the Ram temple would commence from 1 January and continue until 15 January. He added that it would be challenging to quantify the number of RSS members participating in the campaign.
An RSS official, who wished to remain anonymous, stated that the Sangh Parivar has already begun their 'shobha yatras' up to the nyay panchayat level, carrying 'kalash' filled with 'akshat'. The yatra is set to conclude on 31 December.
Following this, under the supervision of committees established at district and block levels, the 'kalash' will be delivered to the nyaya panchayats by 31 December.
Starting 1 January, Sangh Parivar volunteers will begin distributing 'akshat', accompanied by a photograph of Lord Ram, to households at the village and locality levels, according to Dube.
Dube elaborated on the Sangh Parivar's goal to reach out to 25 crore households, which equates to addressing a population exceeding 100 crore.
He mentioned that the attendees would be encouraged to participate in singing 'bhajans' or conducting 'Sundar Kand paath' at local temples on 22 January.
In addition, another RSS representative shared that LED screens would be set up to live broadcast the consecration ceremony on 22 January, allowing the public to experience this significant event.
Nishtha Anushree is Senior Sub-editor at Swarajya. She tweets at @nishthaanushree.
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