New Ayodhya township in the worksAyodhya

Virendra Singh Rawat

Close on the heels of the consecration of a grandiose Lord Ram temple in Ayodhya, a greenfield modern township spanning nearly 1,400 acres is in the works to imbue the ancient Ayodhya town in futuristic grandeur.

Titled ‘Navya Ayodhya’ (new Ayodhya), the proposed township will be developed as a model green and sustainable urban centre replete with ample vegetation and ecological landscaping.

The proposed 21st century township will be a short drive from the Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Sthal as well as the Ayodhya international airport and railway station to provide faster connectivity to both residents and tourists.

The theme based ‘New Ayodhya’ will manifest the character and ideals of Lord Ram as encapsulated in legendary epics of Ramayan and Ramcharitmanas such as veneration for nature, love for animals etc by demarcating nearly 25 percent of the swathes for greenery, water bodies, parks, orchards etc.

Besides, the township will generate and extensively use renewable energy such as solar power to reduce its carbon footprint and showcase a replicable sustainable template.

The township would comprise housing, commercial spaces, tourist attractions, spiritual and cultural centres, leisure activities, education, hospitality, healthcare etc to cater to the growing stature of Ayodhya as a future global tourism hotspot.

The New Ayodhya master plan envisages 230 acres for the setting up of ashrams, mutts, dharamshalas, cultural centres, trusts and temples, while 125 acres has been proposed to be allocated for commercial spaces including hotels, guest houses, offices and community centres.

Similarly, about 245 acres will be allocated to real estate pertaining to hospitals, nursing homes, schools, tourism activities etc, while administrative buildings and blocks will span 13 acres.

After the consecration ceremony in Ayodhya on January 22, which was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and a galaxy of top industrialists including Mukesh Ambani, the tourist inflow in the temple town has jumped exponentially.

The UP government has estimated that Ayodhya will log annual tourist inflow of more than 30 million and generate annual tourism revenue of more than Rs 55,000 crore in the initial years itself.

In this context, there is an urgent need to pitchfork the local infrastructure and hospitality ecosystem to keep pace with the growing tourist flow.

The commissioning of the Ayodhya international airport and the launch of direct flights to-and-fro major cities is translating into a steady stream of affluent and discerning tourists. The new township will address this segment.

Meanwhile, the modern transformation of Ayodhya is estimated to cost Rs 30,000 crore to the exchequer under ‘Ayodhya Vision 2047’ theme.

The funds would be invested by the state and central governments in about 260 projects relating to 35 departments including tourism, aviation, infrastructure, housing, medical, energy, culture, urban development, transport etc.

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