BY VIVEK TRIPATHI
Ayodhya, Aug 8 (IANS) The Nepalese priest who performed the bhumi pujan rituals for the construction of the Ram Mandir here on August 5, strongly criticised Nepal Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli for his statements on Lord Ram and Ayodhya.
Nepalese priest Acharya Durga Prasad Gautam became a fan of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as despite the slight tension between India and Nepal, he talked about cultural relations between the two countries during the bhumi pujan.
Gautam told IANS, “It was a matter of great pride for me to sit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and perform bhumi pujan.”
Condemning the statements made by Oli about Lord Ram and Ayodhya, Durga Prasad, a resident of Oli’s home district, said the whole world knows Lord Ram was born in Ayodhya and absurd statements by Oli will create trouble for the Nepalese as a lot of them are living in India.
He, however, expressed happiness that a communist at least recognised the existence of Lord Ram.
Durga Prasad said Oli’s statement is being condemned all over Nepal as it has hurt the sentiments of a lot of people there. “Ram was born in Ayodhya, even children know it. It does not require a certificate from Oli or anyone else,” the priest added.
He said that such statements will not affect the centuries old relationship between the two countries.
The priest said, “People are taking his statement as a joke. The culture of the two countries is similar from marriage rites to worship rituals and from Vedas to father-in-law and son-in-law relationship. He made such a statement about Lord Ram, being a communist. Those who earlier used to question Lord Ram’s existence are now believing in it. It is disgraceful to make such a statement while serving as Prime Minister of a country.”
Talking about the bhumi pujan rituals, he said they were performed amid the chanting of Sanskrit shlokas and at times they were explained to PM Modi in Hindi to avoid any error. Modi was extremely patient while performing the rituals.
There was a distance between the people there due to the SPG protocol but whenever PM Modi faced any problem, the fellow priests went to him and explained the rituals to him. He said his fellow priests, Chandrabhan Pandey and Acharya Jayaprakash, were from Kashi.
A total of 21 priests joined the bhumi pujan rituals, of which one was from Nepal, four from Ayodhya, five from Delhi, one from Basti, five from Kashi, one from Prayagraj, three from South India and one from Vrindavan.
He said that it is necessary to have a ‘Yajaman’ in such kind of rituals, so former VHP chief Late Ashok Singhal’s nephew was sitting with his wife as the main ‘Yajaman’.
BY VIVEK TRIPATHI