Lakhs of devotees took a holy dip in the Saryu river in Ayodhya, the birth place of Lord Rama, on Friday as Ram Navmi was celebrated with traditional fervour here.
Heavy barricading was in place at the banks of the river and foolproof security bandobast were in place on all entry and exit points.
The festivities began at the Saryu banks and then at Kanak Bhawan.
Important places like the Totadri Mutt, Birla Dharmshala, Madiramdas ji Chhawni, Ram Vallabh Kunj, Janki Mahal, Asharfi Bhawan, Sugriva Kila, Koshlesh Sadan have been decked up for the festival that is underway at more than 10,000 temples in the city of Faizabad.
ATS commandos, Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC), Rapid Action Force (RAF) personnel have been put on duty keeping in mind the alert sounded by central and state intelligence units of a possible terror plot to target the large gathering on Ram Navmi.
A total of 23 close circuit TV cameras have been installed to keep an eye on people’s movement in the town, a security official told IANS. (IANS)
Vivah Panchami is a Hindu festival that celebrates the wedding of Lord Ram and Goddess Sita. It is celebrated on Shuklapaksha Panchami, which is the fifth day of the month of Margashirsha according to Hindu calendar. In 2017, the festival was celebrated on 23rd November.
In Ramayana, it was on this day (Vivah Panchami) that Lord Ram; the eldest son of King Dashrath of Ayodhya, the reincarnation of Lord Vishu got married to Goddess Sita. Vivah Panchami festival celebrates the union between these two divine beings.
According to the legends, it was on this day that Lord Ram along with his brother Lakshman visited Jankpur, the birthplace of Goddess Sita. In the Kingdom of Mithila, King Janak had organized the ceremony of ‘Swayamvar’ for his daughter Sita. In this ceremony, the Goddess was supposed to choose her groom. The condition for winning the Swayamvar, however, was decided on contender’s ability to lift a the majestic bow of Lord Shiva string it. Lord Ram not only managed to raise the bow but he also broke it and thus fulfilled the condition and married Sita. According to Ramayana, during this grand marriage ceremony other the brothers of Lord Ram like Lakshman, Bharat and Shatrughan were also married to Sita’s cousins called Urmila, Mandavi, and Shuddhakirti respectively.
Celebrations on Vivah Panchami:
Vivah Panchami is celebrated with great enthusiasm in the city of Ayodhya, the birthplace of Lord Ram and Mithilanchal region in India as well as in Janakpuri in the Nepal. At Ayodhya, the devotees try to recreate the wedding ceremony by decorating the idols of Ram and Sita with bridal clothes and jewellery. This celebration is also popularly referred to as ‘Ram Vivah Utsav.’ Ramleela, a dramatic folk enactment of Lord Ram’s life is also performed at various places depicting the marriage ceremony between Lord Ram and Sita.
Vivah Panchami also has a great significance in the region of Janakpuri (in Nepal) as it believed to be the place where the marriage ceremony took place. Many devotees visit the place from India to Nepal to worship Lord Ram and Goddess Sita and celebrate their union. People seek the blessing from these idols of Ram and Sita to live a happy married life. It is also a firm belief among the devotees that worshipping Lord Ram and Sita on this day will help them deal with their marital woes and strengthen their union.