Thripitakabhivandana Week celebrated in Northern India | Daily News

Thripitakabhivandana Week celebrated in Northern India

Sri Lankan High Commissioner Austin Fernando and other officials at Thripitaka Week celebrations in Bodh Gaya on March 16.
Sri Lankan High Commissioner Austin Fernando and other officials at Thripitaka Week celebrations in Bodh Gaya on March 16.

The Sri Lankan High Commission in New Delhi, in collaboration with Buddhist organisations in India, organised a series of events in several Buddhist centres in India to celebrate Thripitaka Week from March 16 – 23.

High Commissioner Austin Fernando participated in the first event of the series of events, which was held in Bodh Gaya on March 16, together with the Sri Lankan devotees and leading Chief Incumbents from Buddhist centres in Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, India, Nepal and Laos.

Speaking at the event, the High Commissioner made an overview of the historical evolution of the Thripitaka and on the present project by the Sri Lankan government to list the Thripitaka with the UNESCO Memory of the World Register.

Speeches were made by the invitees and the Board members of the Maha Bodhi explaining the importance of the Thripitaka and of inscribing the Thripitaka in the UNESCO Memory of the World Register and the speakers appreciated the initiative by President Maithripala Sirisena and the Sri Lankan government in preserving this national heritage.

Ven. H. Saddhatissa Thera, Bhikku in charge of Mahabodhi Society of India, Bodh Gaya Center, made arrangements for the event. All volumes of the Thripitaka were on display at the event. The event was followed by an almsgiving for the Maha Sangha, participated by about 150 bhikkus.

A meeting was organised on March 16 for Thripitaka Week in Varanasi at the Mulagandakuti Vihara, which was followed by an almsgiving at the same venue on March 17.

The meeting on Mrch 16 was followed with chanting of Dhamma Chakka Pavattana Sutta, blessing Sri Lanka, President Sirisena, and the government. The almsgiving was attended by many bhikkus, including around 30 monks from Bangladesh. Chief Incumbent of the Mulagandakuti Vihara, Ven. Medhankara Thera explained the objective of the event and congratulated President Sirisena for having taken this initiative.

Another special religious function relating to the Thripitaka, was held on March 17 afternoon, at the Jambudveepa - Sri Lanka Buddhist Temple, headed by Chief Incumbent Ven. Sumedha Thera and organised by the Indo-Sri Lanka International Buddhist Association.

It was attended by many leading Chief Incumbents such as Ven. Prof. Medagama Nandawansa Thera, Chief Sanga Nayaka of the Western Province of Sri Lanka, Head of Sri Lanka Vidyalaya, Colombo, and Ven. Prof. Mahanuwara Seewalee Thera, Professor of the Central Tibetan University in Varanasi and Chief Incumbent of the Western Buddhist Vihara, Mississauga, Toronto, Canada.

Ven. Sumedha Thera explained the value of the action initiated by the President to list the Thripitaka as a world heritage and the importance of the Thripitaka, to the devotees from Sri Lanka who were present at the event.

The High Commissioner having explained the follow-up action by the Sri Lankan government, requested the devotees present to take the message of listing the Thripitaka with the UNESCO Memory of World Heritage to their communities.

Everyone present was appreciative of this important Buddhist activity initiated by President Sirisena.


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