JANAKPURDHAM, May 11: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi performed a special worship in keeping with the ‘shodasopachar’ rituals at the Janaki Temple in Janakpurdham on Thursday.
The shodasopachar rituals, which has the primacy of mantras (hymns), is performed on behalf only the distinguished guests coming to pay obeisance at the Janaki Temple. Modi is the first Indian Prime Minister to perform the special worship following the shodasopachar rituals.
The shodasopachar ritual incorporates the pancha aahuti, pancha tantra and five priests chanting the mantras. This worship lasts for about an hour. Offerings of clothes, jewelries and ornamental items are made to the Hindu goddess Sita as part of the worship.
“Visit to Janaki temple is a memorable experience for me,” wrote Indian PM Modi in the visitor’s book at Janaki temple.
Former Indian Presidents Neelam Sanjeeva Reddy, Gyani Jail Singh and Pranab Mukherjee had performed special worship employing the khodasopachar ritual when they visited the temple.
Sita, also known here as Janaki Mata, is worshipped as a goddess and an epitome of an ideal woman. She is the consort of the Hindu God Ram. She is believed to be born out of the Earth as the daughter of Janaka, the king of ancient kingdom Mithila.
The shadasopachar worship is offered on behalf the VVIP guests as a continuation of the Videha tradition. Janakpurdham is the birth place of Janaki and the capital of the ancient kingdom Mithila.
The Janakapurdham city which names after the dynasty of King Janak had served as the capital of Mithila Province in a mythical period. The Janaki Temple is taken as the home of Janaki ( Hindu goddess Sita), daughter of King Janak and spouse of Shree Ram, the then king of Ayodhya, India.
As per the religious belief, there is a bed room of Janaki and Ram in the sanctum sanctorum of the Janaki Temple which is an example of Mugal, Hindu and Maithil architecture. The temple is taken as the paragon of the architecture design. The temple has also idols of Sita and Ram which were installed by Mahatma Sur Kishore Das and the Orachha king and the queen.
The main gate leading to the room where the idols of god Ram and goddess Sita are ensconced is also made of silver. There is a small jagmohan right in front. Small verandahs have been constructed adjacent to the main gate to the right and left of the sanctum sanctorum. The verandahs are considered to be the reflection of the Mithila architecture.
The walls on both sides of the main gate leading to the sanctum sanctorum have attractive frescoes depicting the life storiesof Sita and Ram. There are eight small rooms called ‘aasthakunja’ on the rear side of the throne of Ram and Sita.
Out of these rooms, two rooms are said to be the way towards patal (the nether world). The rest of the rooms are used as the bathroom and the bedroom of Ram and Sita.
The fort-shaped temple is surrounded by small dome and turrets from all four directions. It occupies 49,555 square feet and is 50 meters high and has 60 rooms which are decorated with the flag of Nepal, colored glass, engravings and paintings, with beautiful lattice windows and turrets. Queen Vrisha Bhanu of Tikamgarh, India built the temple in 1910.
The temple is also popularly known as Nau Lakha Mandir (nine lakhs). Construction cost of the temple was said to be the same amount of money–nine lakhs rupees, thus giving the name.
Another history said it cost approximately Rs 1.5 million to build the temple and it needed 12 years for its completion.
The Temple is called Naulakha as nine lakh rupees (900,000) was invested to construct it. It is an example of Hindu-Koiri Nepali architecture which is beautifully described in religious scriptures and literatures. It is also considered the most important model of Koiri architecture in Nepal.
Fully built in bright white and constructed in an area of 4,860 sq. feet in a mixed style of Mughal and Koiri domes, the temple is 50 meters high. The stone idols of lion placed above the north entrance gate have decked the temple extraordinarily.
The temple is decorated with the national flags colored glass, engravings and paintings, with beautiful lattice windows and turrets.
Prime Minister Oli had welcomed the Indian PM Modi upon his arrival at the temple for worship. Similarly, Mahanta Ramtapeshwar Das and assistant Mahanta Ramroshan Das of Janaki Temple had welcomed PM Modi following the Maithil Culture.
Modi had further prayed in Akhanda Sitaram Hymns after worship in Shaligram Temple at the Janaki Temple premise.