Ayodhya Ram Mandir's invitees: Kothari brothers, Muslim karsevak, doctor who fought for PM Modi's visa & more
As the country awaits the grand consecration ceremony or Pran Pratishtha at the Ayodhya Ram temple on January 22, the Shri Ram Janmbhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust has invited several people from all walks of life. The list also includes the oncologist who fought for PM Modi's visa to Kothari Brothers.
India is gearing up for the grand 'Pran Pratishtha' ceremony of Lord Ram scheduled on January 22, which will also mark the inauguration of the Ram temple in Ayodhya. The Mandir Movement has received extraordinary contributions from ordinary people, foreign guests, and government figures, totaling just over 7,000 invitations to the January 22 ceremony. The invitations are from the Shri Ram Janmbhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has requested that people avoid visiting Ayodhya on January 22 to prevent chaos.
The guest list for the consecration ceremony is as follows:
1. The oncologist who fought in 2014 for PM Modi's visa
Among the esteemed invitees are oncologist Bharat Barai and a colleague at Nokia Bell Labs-CTO Abhay Asthana. According to an Indian Express report, Barai campaigned in 2014 for the visa approval of Narendra Modi, shortly before the Lok Sabha elections. The US was preparing to ban the BJP leader from the country for ten years. At the time, Gujarat's Chief Minister was Narendra Modi. Bharat Barai travelled to India to assist Narendra Modi's campaign for the Lok Sabha elections after raising money for former US President Barack Obama's presidential campaign. In 2014, Barai headed a group of 650 NRIs in Gujarat for the 'Modi for PM' campaign. Additionally, they actively supported BJP candidates in several seats.
2. Babri Masjid Petitioner
The January 22 event has extended an invitation to Iqbal Ansari, who spearheaded a legal battle in favour of the Babri Masjid. Ansari, a prominent supporter of the mosque and a previous litigator in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid controversy received an invitation earlier in January, underscoring the endeavour to include everyone in the process of establishing a new temple. He has supported the construction of the temple and actively participated in ceremonies and activities, including the welcome of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Ayodhya, despite his prior participation with the Babri Masjid dispute.
3. The Kothari Brothers' family
The family of Kothari Brothers from Kolkata, Ram Kothari and Sharad Kothari have also been invited to the event. The Kothari Brothers travelled from Kolkata in 1990 which was then known as Calcutta, to Ayodhya, where they died in a gun firing leaving an enduring impression on the nation's collective memory.
4. Muslim Karsevak
At the Lord Rama idol 'Pran Pratistha' event, there is an invitation for a Muslim karsevak (volunteer) who participated in the Ram Mandir agitation. When Mohammed Habib received the invitation, he broke down in tears of happiness and described it as an "emotional moment." During the protest, Habib was the BJP Yuva Morcha's District Vice-President. On December 2, 1992, he and fifty other persons travelled from Varanasi Cantt to Ayodhya. On December 6, karsevaks broke down the disputed building.
5. Actors Arun Govil and Dipika Chikhlia
TV serial Ramayan actors Arun Govin and Dipika Chikhlia have also received an invitation. The inauguration of Ram Mandir will also be attended by spiritual leaders including, Dalai Lama, Mata Amritanandamayi, Yoga guru Baba Ramdev and Jaggi Vasudev.
Cricket players and members of Bollywood will also attend the historic Ram Mandir inauguration in Ayodhya. The most recent stars invited to witness the celebration on January 22 are Jackie Shroff, Tiger Shroff, Lin Laishram, Randeep Hooda, and Dhanush. Their attendance broadens the list of notable guests, which also includes Amitabh Bachchan, Virat Kohli, Sachin Tendulkar, Ranbir Kapoor, and Alia Bhatt.
The entire city is gearing up for a comprehensive transformation before January 22, aligning with the Pran Pratishtha program starting on January 16 and culminating in the main event. High-tech security arrangements, including the use of Artificial Intelligence, are underway to ensure the safety and success of the historic occasion.