Approximately 3000 individuals submitted applications for the position of priest at the Ram temple in Ayodhya following the official announcement of vacancies by Ram Mandir Teerth Kshetra on Monday. From this pool, 200 candidates will be shortlisted based on merit for the subsequent interview rounds, as confirmed by a representative of the trust.
The interviews for the selected 200 candidates are scheduled to take place at Karsevak Puram, the headquarters of the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) in Ayodhya. Ultimately, only 20 candidates will be chosen. The three-member panel responsible for the selection comprises a Hindu preacher from Vrindavan, Jaykant Mishra, along with two mahants from Ayodhya, namely Satyanarayan Das and Nandini Sharan.
Upon selection, the candidates will undergo residential training for six months and will be appointed as priests. Subsequently, they may be assigned to various positions. Unsuccessful candidates, while not securing a priest position, will still receive training, certificates, and the opportunity to be considered for future priest vacancies, as explained by trust treasurer Govind Dev Giri to PTI.
The training will adhere to a religious syllabus developed by prominent seers. During this period, candidates will benefit from free lodging and meals, in addition to receiving a stipend of Rs 2000.
Addressing the interview content, Giri mentioned that candidates might be questioned on topics such as “Sandhya Vandan,” its procedures, the associated mantras, and the rituals involved in worshipping Lord Ram.
The Ram Mandir, a Hindu temple in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh, is currently under construction. The inauguration, slated for November 24, 2024, will be officiated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The temple’s construction commenced following the groundbreaking ceremony and foundation stone laying on August 5, 2020. The Larsen & Toubro group is overseeing the construction with an estimated cost of Rs 18,000 crore.