Pilgrims make beeline to Ayodhya for Kartik Poornima

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Ayodhya: Lakhs of devotees are thronging the town for taking a dip in the River Saryu on Kartik Poornima tomorrow, the first major congregation of devotees here after the historic judgement in the Ayodhya case.

The Supreme Court on Saturday paved the way for the construction of a Ram Temple at the disputed site at Ayodhya, while directing the Centre to allot a 5-acre plot to the Sunni Waqf Board for building a mosque.

Devotees will take the dip in Saryu in Ram ki Paidi and Naya Ghat and adjoining areas, officials said.

”Over five lakh devotees are likely to take a dip on the occasion of Kartik Poornima in Ayodhya. On normal days, around 8,000 visitors visit Ramjanmabhoomi for darshan. On festive occasion, the number crosses 50,000.Now, since the judgement has come on Ramjanmabhoomi, the number of visitors may increase as well,” Ayodhya District Magistrate Anuj Kumar Jha told PTI.

He said the situation is absolutely normal around the Ramjanmabhoomi area. ”We have taken all precautionary steps to ensure security, and also to make sure that devotees do not face problem, and have a safe and hassle-free darshan.Posting of police officials and magistrates have been done keeping this in mind,” he said.

For the convenience of visitors coming to Ayodhya, various health, sanitation and drinking water facilities among other have been put in place.

Water tankers have been installed at around 18 places, 20 medical camps with ambulance are ready besides 30 mobile toilets.

Deputy Director, Information, Ayodhya division, Murlidhar Singh said, ”The bathing in Saryu river will commence at 4 pm today, and will continue till Tuesday evening, since as per the Hindu calendar Poornima will begin on Monday evening.”

Elaborating on the significance of Kartik Poornima, Prayagraj-based convenor of organisations Ram Naam Bank and Ram Sewa Trust Ashutosh Varshney, told <I>PTI<P>, ”The full moon day during the month of Kartik is known as Kartik Poornima. It is also known as Dev Deepawali — the Deepawali celebrated by Gods. This Dev Deepawali comes 15 days after Deepawali celebrated by us on Amavasya day”.

”Earthen lamps are lit at all temples as well as at the bank of River Ganga on the day of Kartik Purnima,” he said.

”This Kartik Poornima holds special significance as it comes days after the Supreme Court gave its verdict in the Ayodhya dispute case,” he said.