For decades now, the people of Uttar Pradesh have been under rulers who made it difficult, even shameful, to think of themselves as Hindus. The people of the land of Kashi, Mathura and Ayodhya used to wonder whether it was safe for them to even engage in their religious practices.
The rulers spent Government money on birthday parties. Dancer girls gyrated to vulgar music while men threw notes on them.
People had had enough. They voted for a change in 2017. They voted for a change to get them back to their roots — their aastha.
After decades, perhaps even centuries, Ayodhya has today witnessed a grand celebration of Diwali — to mark the occasion of our beloved Lord Rama and Sita Mayya returning to Ayodhya after destroying the evil Ravana.
1.71 lakh diyas were lit to celebrate the return of the embodiment of Dharma to his roots. The number represented the total number of residents of Ayodhya as of today. In effect, every resident of Ayodhya celebrated the return of their beloved ruler. Reminds us of the Ramayana where similar scenes are described at the end of the Yuddha Kanda when maryAda purushottama Rama returned back.
The dwi-laksha deepotsava represents the desire of the people of Uttar Pradesh to move away from darkness and towards light, and knowledge. The government has rightly used the occasion to declare that the priority will be to deliver ‘bijli, sadak and pani’ to every resident of Uttar Pradesh. Every activity in our dharma is begun by the lighting of the lamp. Today’s deepotsava should signal the beginning of the transformation of the lives of the people of Uttar Pradesh. Let this mark the beginning of a dharmic regime in the most holiest of our lands.
The greatest of our Gods, Lord Rama, once walked the banks of the river Sarayu. On the very same banks, the residents of Ayodhya have today lit a lamp in salutation to their eternal Lord. They would have walked back to their homes with the hope that their Lord will listen to their prayer and light up their lives in return for the diya they lit.
It is very much the responsibility of the rulers to lift the ‘spiritual energy’ of the people. On that count, the Yogi Adityanath Government has scored perfect today.
May this be the first step towards Rama Rajya in Uttar Pradesh.