Walking, cycling and even skating! Covering long distances amid bone-chilling cold, people from all over the country and cutting across religions are flocking to the temple town of Ayodhya ahead of the consecration ceremony on January 22.
Driven by their faith in Lord Ram and carried through by the overwhelming religious mood in the country, they say they desire to be a part of the historic day and want to send out a message of love and unity.
Nitish Kumar, a resident of Bihar’s Madhepura district, has cycled more than 600 kilometres to reach Ayodhya.
“It took me seven days to cover 615 km from Bihar to Ayodhya. I have reached today. I was carrying a sleeping bag and some essentials with me on my cycle only to help me take some breaks on the way. I had decided to do this when the Supreme Court verdict came, I was still in school then,” the 21-year-old told PTI.
“I will come next time with my family. We are a strong believer in Lord Ram. They will also be celebrating on January 22 but I wanted to be part of this historic day in Ayodhya,” he added.
Kumar has adorned his bicycle with four flags — a tricolour and three saffron flags bearing pictures and a ‘Jai Shree Ram’ message.
Soni Chaurasia, a Guinness Book record holder for the “longest dance marathon” (124 hours), is among the invitees for the consecration ceremony and is skating her way to Ayodhya from Varanasi.
“I left Varanasi on January 17 and will reach on January 22. I have skated this long before too but the weather right now is a challenge. The entire journey is 228 kilometres. I am being accompanied by my coach and doctor who will follow me on a motorbike,” Chaurasia told PTI.
Himanshu Soni, who is just 10 years old, set out for Ayodhya on skates from Rajasthan’s Kotputhli on January 16 aiming to cover a distance of 704 km.