Raipur: The way Shri Ram had established ‘Shivling’ in Rameshwaram before leaving for Lanka, the same way he had established ‘Shivling’ at Rampal area of Chhattisgarh as well, before moving from Northern to Southern part of India, and had performed customary rituals there. Rampal is situated in Bastar district of Chhattisgarh, where the ‘Shivling’ established by Lord Ram is still present. Before entering South India, Lord Ram had visited Rampal area and thereafter he had worshipped ‘Bhudevi’ in Ramaram area of Sukma district. Chhattisgarh Government has decided to include both these places into its new tourism circuit and has planned to beautify and develop these places into tourist destinations.
Chhattisgarh’s new tourism circuit would connect all the important places where Lord Ram had visited during his exile via good road network and ultramodern facilities. Chhattisgarh Government has identified 75 places on Ram Van Gaman Path in the state, and in the first phase, nine places have been selected between Koriya in North to Ramaram of Sukma district in southern part of Chhattisgarh. These places will be developed and beautified by Bhupesh Baghel Government at the cost of Rs 137 crore 45 lakh. In the month of December, this project was commenced with foundation laying of beautification and expansion work of Mata Kaushalya Temple in Chandkhuri area of Raipur district.
The ‘Shivling’ established by Lord Ram in Rampal is 10kms away from District Headquarters Jagdalpur. Scholars and Research institutions have confirmed that this ‘Shivling’ dates back to Ramayana era. Ramaram area of Sukma district is situated near Chhattisgarh state’s border that touches borders of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana states. Developmen of Ramaram area as tourist destination will give Sukma district a whole new identity. Because of naxal activities, the historic, cultural and religious significance of these districts could not be revealed. Chhattisgarh Government’s adim is to create new possibilities of employment through tourist development. In Ramayan era, Chhattisgarh’s Bastar district was known as Dankaranya, and Shri Ram had spent significant amount of time during his period of exile in forest.