Bhupesh Baghel, the Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh, has long been a devotee of Lord Ram. As CM, one of the first things he did was start a project to improve the temples that were near the path of Lord Ram’s exile.
Celebrating the second anniversary of his government, the culture department has launched schemes to promote Chhattisgarh tourism.
The CM inaugurated the renovated temple of Shivarinarayan, which is a part of the Chhattisgarh tourism circuit that travels the path of Lord Ram’s exile and worships in the 9 temples at the site.
Ramayana Interpretation Café
A café called Ramayana Interpretation Café has been opened as well. The purpose of this café is for tourists to gather and study the various features and versions of the Ramayana.
Ramacharitmanas Mandali recital competition
To promote Chhattisgarh tourism, the culture department launched a recital competition scheme. The first competition, held in March, saw participants from gram panchayats to district level. Cash prizes amounting to lakhs of rupees were also given to the groups who participated.
Lord Ram like a nephew, says Baghel
In his inauguration speech, Baghel made it clear that his aim of renovating and restoring the temples was not due to any political motive.
He said, for the people of Chhattisgarh, Ram is like a nephew, a part of their culture. Due to a popular belief that his mother, Kaushalya, may have been a princess from Kosala, the name “bhanja” is given to Lord Ram.
Declaring the project of renovating the temples as a “people’s plan,” he associated himself with Shabri. Shabri was a loyal devotee of Lord Ram in the epic, Ramayana.
Baghel claimed that Lord Ram is very special to the people of Chhattisgarh. He is thought to be scattered in every particle of Chhattisgarh soil, as he spent the majority of his exile there.
It’s not known clearly if this move was political due to the upcoming Assembly elections in December 2023. Though the temple renovations will definitely benefit Chhattisgarh tourism.
Edited By:Khushi Thakur
Published By: Mohammed Anees