The city of Ayodhya in the state of Uttar Pradesh holds a special place in the hearts of many Hindus as it is believed to be the birthplace of Lord Ram, one of the most revered deities in Hinduism. The Ayodhya Ram Mandir, also known as the Ram Janmabhoomi Temple, has been a site of contention for centuries and has gone through numerous changes, destructions, and reconstructions over the years. In this unique blog, we will take a journey through time to explore the evolution of Ayodhya Ram Mandir from 1528 to 2024.
1528: The First Destruction
The original Ayodhya Ram Mandir is believed to have been built in 1528 during the reign of the Mughal Emperor Babur. According to Hindu mythology, the temple was built on the spot where Lord Ram was born. However, in 1528, it is said that Mir Baqi, a commander in Babur's army, destroyed the temple and built the Babri Masjid in its place. This event marked the beginning of a long and controversial history of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir.
1853: The First Legal Battle
In 1853, the first legal battle over the ownership of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir began. Mahant Raghubir Das, a Hindu priest, filed a lawsuit claiming ownership of the land on which the Babri Masjid was built. He argued that the land was a sacred site for Hindus as it was the birthplace of Lord Ram. However, the British colonial court dismissed his claim, stating that there was no evidence to prove that the site was indeed the birthplace of Lord Ram.
1949: The Second Destruction and the Beginning of a Dispute
On December 22, 1949, a group of Hindus broke into the Babri Masjid and placed idols of Lord Ram inside the mosque. This act of vandalism sparked communal tensions and led to a legal battle between the Hindus and Muslims over the ownership of the site. The government took control of the site and declared it a disputed area, which was to be opened for worship by both Hindus and Muslims.
1992: The Demolition and the Aftermath
On December 6, 1992, a large group of Hindu activists gathered in Ayodhya and demolished the Babri Masjid, claiming that it was built on the birthplace of Lord Ram. This act of destruction resulted in nationwide communal violence, with thousands of people losing their lives. The demolition of the Babri Masjid also marked a significant shift in India's political landscape and led to the rise of right-wing Hindu nationalist parties.
2003: The Archaeological Survey of India's Findings
In 2003, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) conducted excavations at the site and found evidence of a temple beneath the Babri Masjid. The ASI's findings supported the belief of Hindus that the site was indeed the birthplace of Lord Ram. However, the findings were a subject of controversy and were challenged by the Muslim community.
2010: The Allahabad High Court Verdict
After 60 years of legal battle, the Allahabad High Court gave its verdict on the ownership of the site. The court divided the disputed area into three equal parts, with one-third going to the Hindu parties, one-third to the Muslim parties, and the remaining one-third to the Nirmohi Akhara, a Hindu sect. The verdict was appealed by both the Hindu and Muslim parties in the Supreme Court.
2019: The Supreme Court Verdict
After a 9-year-long legal battle, the Supreme Court of India finally delivered its verdict on the ownership of the site. The court ruled in favor of the Hindu parties and ordered the construction of a Ram temple at the site while also granting 5 acres of land to the Muslim parties for the construction of a mosque. The verdict was seen as a win for the Hindu community and a landmark verdict in one of India's longest-running disputes.
2022: The Construction of Ayodhya Ram Mandir
As per the Supreme Court's verdict, the construction of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir is set to begin in 2022. The temple, with its grand architecture and design, is expected to be completed in 2024 and will serve as a symbol of India's cultural and religious heritage. The construction of the temple is a dream come true for many Hindus who have long waited for a Ram temple at the birthplace of their beloved deity.
The Ayodhya Ram Mandir has gone through a tumultuous journey, marked by destruction, legal battles, and communal tensions. However, its evolution from a small temple in 1528 to a grand temple in 2024 is a testament to the resilience and perseverance of the Indian people. The temple's construction shortly will not only be a religious milestone but also a step towards peace and harmony in the country.