Petit Raffray [Mauritius], January 14: Day after the Mauritian cabinet announced a mandatory 2-hour break for Hindus working in public offices to enable them to attend local events being organised ahead of the opening of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh, it has now been learnt that temples in the island country will organise chanting of verses from the epic 'Ramayana' ahead of the grand event in India.

Speaking to ANI on Friday, the president of the Mauritius Sanatan Dharm Temples Federation, Bhojraj Ghoorbin, said all temples in the Hindu-majority country will organise the chanting of verses from 'Ramayana' as part of events marking the 'Pran Pratishtha' of Shri Ram Lalla in Ayodhya on January 22. Mauritius Special Leave on Ram Temple Inauguration: Government Grants Two-Hour Break for Hindu Employees on January 22.

"Across Mauritius, all our Hindu brothers and sisters are in a celebratory mood these days. From Makar Sankranti on January 15, all our temples will hold the chanting of verses from Ramayana. On January 22, when Lord Ram will be enthroned at the grand temple in Ayodhya, we will hold celebrations similar to Diwali. The Festival of Lights will be celebrated twice in Diwali this year," Ghoorbin told ANI.

"The first Diwali would be celebrated across the country on January 22 while the second would mark the actual celebration of the Festival of Lights on October 31. After 500 years of Vanwas (exile), Prabhu Shri Ram is coming to Ayodhya and our celebrations would be unbridled and unprecedented," he added.

Ghoorbin added that a day before the inauguration of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, a cultural programme will be organised. Mauritian Prime Minister Pravind Kumar Jugnauth will attend the event as the chief guest, he added.

"Whenever Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Mauritius, he described our country as 'Chhota Bharat'. On January 21, a day ahead of the Ram Temple opening, we will hold a mega cultural programme featuring all our social and cultural organisations. Our PM will grace the event as the chief guest. On January 22, we will arrange a live telecast of the 'Pran Prantistha' ceremony in the Mauritian capital. We will set up giant screens so that everyone can catch the event live. We would all be lighting lamps in our homes and all our temples would be lit up like they are on festivals," Ghoorbin told ANI.

He also lauded PM Jugnauth for approving a two-hour special break for people from the majority community on January 22, saying that other countries would take inspiration to do the same.

"This a big decision taken by our prime minister, Pravind Kumar Jugnauth. We are the first country outside India where people from the Hindu community could avail two hours of leave on January 22. We wish to thank him for this decision. No other country has taken such a decision yet. I hope the leaders of other countries will take inspiration from our PM and do likewise for our Hindu brothers and sisters," he said.

He also expressed hope for the launch of direct flights from Mauritius to Ayodhya in the coming years, saying that the Federation has already spoken to the Mauritian PM about this.

"We have pitched the idea of direct flights from Mauritius to Ayodhya to our PM," he informed.

Earlier, on Friday, the Mauritian government announced the grant of two hours of special break for practising Hindu public officers on January 22 to enable them to participate in local events marking the 'Pran Pratishtha' of Shri Ram Lalla in the Indian temple town.

The Mauritian Cabinet, led by Prime Minister Pravind Kumar Jugnauth issued an official statement that read, "(The) Cabinet has agreed to the grant of a one-off special leave of two hours on Monday 22 January 2024 as from 1400 hours to public officers of Hindu faith, subject to exigencies of service, in the context of the inauguration of the Ayodhya Ram Mandir in India, which is a landmark event as it symbolises the return of Lord Ram in Ayodhya."

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to attend the ceremonial installation of the idol of Shri Ram Lalla inside the sanctum sanctorum of the grand temple on January 22.

A host of leaders and dignitaries from all walks of life have been invited to the grand temple opening in Ayodhya. Ram Temple Consecration Ceremony: Ram Ki Paidi Provided Grand Look Ahead of Ram Mandir Pran Pratishta Ceremony in Ayodhya.

According to temple officials, the ceremony will be held over seven days starting January 16.

The Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra Trust has decided to enthrone Ram Lalla at the sanctum-sanctorum of the Ram Temple at noon on January 22.

Vedic rituals for the Pran-Pratishtha ceremony of Ram Lalla in Ayodhya will begin on January 16, a week before the main ceremony. (ANI)

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