Ahead of consecration event at Ram temple, AAP plans 'Sundar Kand' recitals in Delhi on Tuesdays

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New Delhi, Jan 15 (PTI) In an apparent attempt to counter the BJP's focus on the consecration ceremony at the Ram temple in Ayodhya, the AAP has announced its plan to hold "Sundar Kand" recital programmes across Delhi on Tuesdays.

The consecration ceremony at the Ram temple in Ayodhya will be held on January 22 and Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be present there.

"'Sundar Kand' recitation programme will be held in all Assembly constituencies and municipal wards on the first Tuesday of every month. Party MLAs, councillors and office bearers will take part in the programmes that will held at over 2,600 places in the city," said AAP leader and Delhi minister Saurabh Bharadwaj.

He invited the people of Delhi to participate in the programme enthusiastically.

"Sundar Kand" is one of the chapters in the Ramayana devoted to Lord Hanuman.

The Aam Aadmi Party will organise "Sundar Kand" recitation at the Assembly level and after that, it will be done at the ward level and then at the mandal level also, the AAP leader said.

The "Sundar Kand" recitation programme will begin on Tuesday at all assembly constituencies. It will be held every Tuesday at the zonal level, on every second and last Tuesday of the month at the ward level and every first Tuesday of the month at the assembly constituency level, he said.

"When these programs start taking place at the Mandal level, 'Sundar Kand' recitations will start taking place every month at more than 2,600 places in Delhi. While 'Sundar Kand' recitation will be organized at some places, Hanuman Chalisa chanting will be held at other places," Bharadwaj said.

He added that "Sundar Kand" recitation programmes used to be organised by the AAP and party MLAs in different Assembly constituencies earlier too. "But now, the party has reconstituted a body to hold the programme in a structured manner," the AAP leader added.

The Aam Aadmi Party had in the past been very assertive about its religious leanings that gave ammunition to its critics who charged it of pedalling "soft Hindutva".

The party's national convener Arvind Kejriwal, in his Dussehra speech last year, asserted that Lord Rama was the ideal for the AAP and his government was trying to serve the people taking inspiration from the ideals of "Ram Rajya".

In 2022, Kejriwal suggested printing images of Goddess Laxmi and Lord Ganesh on currency notes to boost the economy.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has not yet received any formal invitation for the 'pran pratishtha' ceremony, sources in the AAP have said.

The chief minister, however, received a letter a few days back informing that he should block his dates and that a formal invite along with details will follow, a source in the AAP said.

The party has so far not made it clear whether Kejriwal will attend the consecration ceremony in Ayodhya. PTI VIT VIT NSD