From night vision devices to CCTV cameras with artificial intelligence (AI), Uttar Pradesh’s Ayodhya has been secured tightly for tomorrow’s Ram temple consecration ceremony. The temple has been decorated with tonnes of flowers and colourful lights.
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Invitees to the pran pratishtha ceremony started arriving today. Once a quiet town, it is now resplendent with new infrastructure and religious fervour, a day before the seminal event in India’s political and religious history.
Multicoloured flowers bedecked the town, and recordings of ‘Ram dhun’ played from loudspeakers and people dressed as Lord Ram, Sita, Lakshman, and Hanuman paraded down the streets.
Ceremonial gates depicting ‘Jai Shri Ram’ in floral patterns and illumination visible at night add to the aura of the ancient city, which has undergone a massive infrastructural growth. “The entire country is chanting the name of Lord Ram,” said Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya.
The streets and skyline of Ayodhya are covered with saffron flags fluttering from rooftops of buildings, small and big. Cut-outs of the Ram temple along with Lord Ram have been put up at Lata Mangeshkar Chowk.
The main ceremony will begin at 12.20 pm and is expected to end by 1 pm. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will then address a gathering of more than 7,000 people, including seers and prominent personalities, at the venue. The entire event will be telecast live.
Surveillance drones have been scanning the ground for suspicious activity. Ayodhya’s ‘yellow zone’ has 10,715 AI-based cameras with face-recognition technology.
To bolster emergency response capabilities, teams from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) have been deployed. SDRF teams will conduct boat patrols on the Saryu river.
An anti-drone system has been deployed by the UP Special Security Force (SSF), adding an extra layer of security against potential aerial threats. “Ayodhya is under the watchful eye of drones equipped with AI, alongside anti-mine drones, as part of the concerted efforts to enhance security in the temple town,” a senior police officer said.
The anti-mine drones fly at a height of one metre above the ground, and are equipped with advanced technology like spectrometer wavelength detection for detecting underground explosives.
The new idol of Ram Lalla, sculpted by Arun Yogiraj, was placed inside the temple today. The idol shows the Ram Lalla as a five-year-old standing on a lotus, also crafted from the same stone.
With inputs from agencies