Holidays, freebies to mark Ayodhya Ram temple consecration

Ram Temple ahead of its consecration ceremony, in Ayodhya. Photo: PTI

With the Bombay High Court setting aside the petition that challenged public holiday declared by the Maharashtra government on Monday (January 22),  it is clear that consecration of the Ram temple in Ayodhya will be celebrated with partial or full government holiday.

On the same day, public sector banks, insurance companies, financial institutions and Regional Rural Banks (RRBs) across the country will remain closed for half a day.

Here is the list of states that have announced full or partial holidays on Monday: 

Uttar Pradesh
The epicentre of all the activities related to Ayodhya temple, UP has declared the day a state holiday. The Yogi Aditya Nath government's order follows the earlier order to all government offices and educational institutes in the state to remain closed on the day. Liquor shops have also been ordered to shut shop on Monday.

India's tourism capital too has announced a public holiday on the day with the closure of government offices and schools. Following the government's announcement, the casinos have decided to shut operations between 8.30 am and 4 pm on Monday.

Puducherry and Chandigarh 
Union territories of Puducherry and Chandigarh have announced a public holiday on the day. Puducherry is the lone government in South India to announce a holiday.

In the national capital Delhi, government offices will remain closed until 2.30 pm on Monday. 

In Haryana, where the BJP is in power, all educational institutions and government offices will remain shut to mark the consecration of the Ram temple. 

Madhya Pradesh
In MP, where the BJP returned to power recently, the government has announced a holiday for schools on Monday and a dry day, which prohibits the sale of liquor and "bhang" across the state on the day. Slaughterhouses and shops selling meat and fish in urban areas of the state have been asked to shut shops for the whole day. However, government offices in the state will remain shut until 2.30 pm.

The Hementa Biswas Sarma ministry in Assam has announced a half-day holiday for all educational institutions and state government offices till 2.30 pm.

Himachal Pradesh
The hilly state where Congress returned to power with a stunning win over BJP  became the first opposition-ruled state to declare a holiday on Monday.

Along with these states, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Odisha and Tripura have also announced the closure of government offices till 2.30 pm on Monday. In Uttarakhand, offices will be closed for half a day, while all educational institutions will have a holiday.

A private hospital in Karnataka's Vijayapura district has announced free delivery of newborns at its facility from January 18 to January 22 to celebrate the Ram temple consecration ceremony.

The decision was announced by the 'Shri Siddeshwar Loka Kalyana Charitable Trust', which runs the JSS Super Speciality Hospital.

Khadi and Village Industries Commission has launched a new clothing range, 'Khadi Sanatan Vastra'. On account of 'Ramotsav' – the consecration ceremony of Lord Ram's idol – Khadi will offer a special discount of up to 20 per cent on Sanatan Vastra.

IIT 'gaushala'
The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay has decided to hold programmes, such as the inauguration of a 'gaushala' (cow shelter) and recitation of a poem based on the epic Ramayan, to mark the occasion.

The IITB will inaugurate a new 'gaushala on' January 22 and have a recitation of 'Geet Ramayan', penned by noted Marathi poet G D Madgulkar, on the campus.

The Tata Institute of Social Sciences, another prominent institution in the city, has banned all protests against the temple consecration. “It has been brought to the notice of the institute that a few students are planning to organise protests in the old/new campus of TISS, against the event of Ram Janambhoomi Pran Pratishthan on 22nd January 2024. We advise students not to indulge in any such unauthorised activities and we also strictly warn students not to participate in any such activities, or demonstrations, failing which the law-enforcement agency will take necessary action against those students found indulging in such activities," said the notice issued on January 18.

Even after the students denied that any protest is being organised, TISS has not withdrawn the notice.

Markets to remain shut
Trading on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) and the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) will remain closed on January 22, with the Maharashtra government announcing a holiday in connection with the consecration of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya.

Money markets too will remain shut for the day, the Reserve Bank of India said. There will be no transactions and settlements in government securities (primary and secondary), foreign exchange, money markets and rupee interest rate derivatives on that day, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) said

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