NEW DELHI: A day after the Supreme Court delivered its historic verdict in the politically-sensitive Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title dispute case, the mayor of Ayodhya has shared that the ancient holy city will be developed as a major pilgrimage centre.
Speaking exclusively to Zee Media, Ayodhya Mayor Rishikesh Upadhyay said, ''The ancient city of Ayodhya will be developed as a major pilgrimage centre. An Ayodhya Pilgrimage Development Council will be set up which will be tasked with developing the city with the state-of-the-art modern infrastructure to promote tourism and connectivity.''
Upadhyay said as per the directions of the Supreme Court, the top district and Uttar Pradesh government officials in coordination with the Central government will meet soon to chalk out a detailed roadmap for the all-round development of Ayodhya.
Ayodhya mayor also said that there is a proposal to install a 151-metre-tall statue of Lord Ram on the banks of the Saryu river in Ayodhya - his birthplace.
It may be recalled that the Supreme Court, in its verdict on the Ayodhya dispute entailed a trust, which was to be formed by the Centre to construct and manage the Ram Temple at the disputed site.
It has now emerged that the Union Ministry of Culture will be the nodal agency in the development of Ayodhya. It has also been reported that the Prime Minister may call a meeting next week to decide on the future course of action after the government’s legal advisers go through the 1045-page SC judgement.
A decision on the Trust will be taken only after inter-ministerial deliberations.
In its judgement, the five-member bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi held that a Trust needs to be formulated within three months.
“The Central Government shall, within three months from the date of this judgment, formulate a scheme … the scheme shall envisage the setting up of trust with a Board of Trustees or any other appropriate body,” the judgement reads.
The judgement also held that under the scheme the selection of trustees, the provisions as well as the power of the trustees will be decided by the Centre. The power of the trustees is to include the construction of a temple and “all necessary, incidental and supplemental matters”.
According to the Union Culture Ministry, the new Ayodhya plan also envisages a Ram Museum in the city, which will house artefacts and antiquities that were found by the ASI while digging the site.
In anticipation of a heavy influx of tourists in the aftermath of the top court ruling, the government has plans of developing the area around the temple.
The places surrounding the deity's birthplace and proposed temple site might be declared a heritage site.
Here are the top points of the Ayodhya roadmap shared by Mayor Rishikesh Upadhyay
1. Proposal to set up Ayodhya Pilgrimage Development Council
2. Ayodhya Pilgrimage Development Council will work to promote tourism and developing it as a modern city
3. Installing ten gates dedicated to Lord Ram in Ayodhya
4. Construction of an airport in Ayodhya
5. Deadline for the first flight to and from Ayodhya being May 2020.
6. Development of an International Bus Terminal with state-of-the-art facilities
7. World-class railway station with an estimated investment of Rs 100 crore.
8. Provision for under-ground cabling
9. Ten 5-star hotels in Ayodhya, the construction of which will begin from December
10. Proposal for construction of 5 big resorts in Ayodhya
11. Plan to install a 151-metre-tall statue of Lord Ram on the banks of the Saryu river
13. Plan to come up with a ''Raen Basera'' which can accommodate 10,000 people
14. Construction of 5-km long flyover connecting Ayodhya with Faizabad
15. Proposal for a medical college in Ayodhya
17. Development of all major public spots, parks in Ayodhya to promote tourism
18. Repair and restoration of all small reservoirs linked to Lord Ram
19. Connecting India with Ramayan circuit
20. 4-lane road between Ayodhya to Chitrakoot