Greater Noida: Lord Rama is worshipped all across the subcontinental India. But in Bisrakh village in Noida, not the hero of the epic Ramayana but its anti-hero, Ravana, is deified. For, the demon king was born there, according to the local folklore.
So, the locals have for long been clamouring for a grand temple to be built to Ravana, the King of Lanka, without whom the Ramayana is incomplete. That wish now stands almost realised -- the temple has been built and on 11 August the idol of Ravana will be ceremonially installed there.
Ravana, however, will not stand alone in the sanctum sanctorium——the idols of Lord Rama, Sita and Laxman as well will keep him company, possibly to remind us that their tales are intertwined.
The temple is a joint venture of the Mahatma Ravan Temple Trust and the Shiv Mohan Temple Trust.
According to Ashokanand Maharaj, the founder trustee of both trusts and the prime mover behind the temple idea, the structure is almost ready to be thronged by devotees from across social milieu. He expects them to gather at the precinct in large numbers.
Several dignitaries are expected to attend the inauguration ceremony. Noted among them will be Hindu Mahasabha President Swami Chakrapani, who will be the chief guest.
Confirming his participation, Swami Chakrapani said that existence of Lord Rama cannot be imagined without Ravana.
Ravana, he said, was a learned Brahmin who was egoistic. It fell onto Lord Rama to banish Ravana's ego——as depicted in the Ramayana. It is this banishment which is celebrated during Dussehra, he added.
The temple will also feature idols of Lord Ganesha, without whom no temple or Hindu ritual is complete, and Shani Maharaj, the averter of all dangers and calamities.
Four priests have been employed to conduct the rituals at the temple.