Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda, Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief N Chandrababu Naidu and Jana Sena Party (JSP) leader Pawan Kalyan were among the political leaders who attended the Ram Mandir inauguration on Monday, January 22. The ‘Pran Pratishtha’ began at 12:20 pm, and is expected to conclude by 1:00 pm.
The ceremony is taking place amid widespread controversy with many in the INDIA Bloc, including the Congress and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) not in attendance. The Opposition parties allege that the inauguration of the incomplete temple is done for political gains ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.
Incidentally, senior BJP leader LK Advani— one of the prime forces behind the Ram Janmabhoomi campaign— has not attended the temple inauguration. Advani is reportedly skipping the event due to cold weather.
Speaking to the media, Deve Gowda said, “My wife and I were invited to attend this sacred programme, thanks to PM Modi. He is going to perform the sacred duty to have the pooja. He has done vrath for 11 days. It is a god-given opportunity for PM Modi. An opportunity like this doesn't come for all, unless he was Vishnu or Shiva in his past life.”
Chandrababu Naidu told Times Now, “I am very happy, It is a historic moment. It is a great occasion. All politicians who want to give good governance, will vote for Rama Rajya.” (sic)
When asked about the absence of Opposition leaders at the inaugural ceremony Gowda said, “I am sorry to hear that. In this case, I don’t think the stand they have taken is a proper one. But it is left to them. I don’t want to say much about people who have decided not to attend.
Pawan Kalyan also spoke to the media and said, “This is a historic event. I’m fortunate to come here. It’s such a rare historic occasion, I’m truly happy to be invited. For the people of the nation, this is a rare event.”
Further, sharing a video of his drive to the inaugural event, he posted on X saying, “On the way to Ayodhya to witness Lord Rama’s Pran Prathishta. Lord Rama is the Hero of our Bharat Civilisation. And it took five centuries of struggle to bring back Lord Rama to Ayodhya.”
The ceremony began at the scheduled time with Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiling the idol of the Hindu deity Ram in the presence of seers and Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Baghwat.