More than 22 lakh 'diyas' illuminated the banks of the Saryu river in Ayodhya during the seventh edition of the Deepotsav, setting a new world record of lighting a large number of lamps simultaneously at one place.
The 22,23 lakh 'diyas' (earthen lanterns), 6.47 lakh more than last year, were lit by 25,000 volunteers at the 51 ghats of Ram Ki Paidi along the river.
Ayodhya echoed with 'Jai Shri Ram' after the representatives of the Guinness Book of World Records who counted the lamps using drones and gave the status of world record to the city, the release said.
Upon receiving a certificate from the Guinness Book of World Records, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath extended warm greetings to the entire Ayodhya and its residents.
In 2017, when the BJP came to power in Uttar Pradesh, 1.71 lakh lamps were lit in Ayodhya and since then Deepotsav has become a major event in the state.
In 2018, 3.01 lakh lamps were lit, 4.04 lakh in 2019, 6.06 lakh in 2020, 9.41 lakh in 2021 and 15.76 lakh in 2022, the release said.
Adityanath, Governor Anandiben Patel and other cabinet members lit lamps and performed prayers at the banks of Saryu River.
Diplomats from 54 countries witnessed the seventh Deepotsav in Ayodhya as the live telecast of the celebration was broadcast in over 100 countries.
Cultural presentations by artists from 21 states, 11 tableaus, Ramlila performances from Russia, Sri Lanka, Singapore, and Nepal, and the talents of 2,500 artists from India and abroad illuminated Ayodhya, the release said.
Volunteers from Dr Ram Manohar Lohia Avadh University, colleges, inter-colleges, and voluntary organisations actively participated in the ceremony.
This year's Deepotsav, coinciding with Hanuman Jayanti, became an unparalleled event in Ayodhya with only 72 days left for the consecration ceremony of the idol of Lord Ram Lalla to be held on January 22, the official release said.