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Saturday, May 7, 2011

Preservation of Buddhist Sites is Made Priority by the Gujarat Government By Karishma Patel


Thursday, April 14th, 2011 | Posted by Editor
Preservation of Buddhist Sites is Made Priority by the Gujarat Government

By Karishma Patel

http://www.chakranews.com/preservation-of-buddhist-sites-is-made-priority-by-the-gujarat-government/1200

The CM of Gujarat Narendra Modi with the Tibetan leader Dalai Lama
Ahmedabad, Gujarat (CHAKRA) – The BJP government of Gujarat has prioritized its efforts to preserve sites that are going to be apart of the Buddhist tourism circuit in the Central Gujarat region. The tourists sites are going to include the caves of Saurashtra as well as the remains of the Buddhist monastery.
The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has been excavating the ancient Buddhist caves and surrounding sites. In response to this the Gujarat government has expedited its work on the preservation of such sites although it is still waiting for approval from the central government to go ahead with the planning of the Buddhist tourism circuit proposal.
The Chief Minister of Gujarat, Mr. Narendra Modi, has eagerly taken interest in this in these activities and as a result visited the excavation sites in Vadnagar of Mehsana district in North Gujarat to take a look at the work being done at the sites.
During his visit, Mr. Modi spoke highly of the excavation activities taking place. He brought to light the visits made in the past by Buddhist monks who came in search of spiritual knowledge and their influence in the eastern belt of India. He further stated that because the eastern belt of India is so influenced by the Buddha, the Buddhist relic findings serve as an opportunity to study his influence on the western belt.
According to an official of the Department of Youth and Cultural Affairs, they plan to build a shed made out of special fibre to protect the excavation site from rain and other damaging materials.
The official at the site also stated that the plan is to build a cultural wall to display the relics found at the site, for which 40 lakh rupees has been set aside. Furthermore, there is a long-term plan to build the area into a museum in Vadnagar because of the number (7000) of relics they have discovered since over five years ago. Most of these findings are from the Ghaskol Darwaja excavation site in the town of Vadnagar.
Some of the findings include clay utensils, beads, ornaments, silver coins, sculptures, tablets, plaques depicting Buddha and parts of a vessel with descriptions relating to Buddhism.
The Tourism Secretary, Mr. Vipul Mitra, said that the Buddhist caves found in various locations of Saurashtra region will also become part of the circuit.
Security has been dispatched in all areas of the site along with signs up displaying information charts about the history of the caves.
The caves are located in various places including, in the Shiyot village of Lakpat taluka, in Kutch district, the Ranpur village of Jamnagar, in Sana, in Prabhas Patan, in the Savangiri villages of Junagadh, and in Gondal taluka or Rajkot.
Many in the international community have praised this initiative by the Narendra Modi government after many ancient Buddhist monuments have been destroyed by Islamic extremists in countries such as Afghanistan and Bangladesh in recent years.

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Tags: archaelogical survey of india, ASI, BJP, bjp government, buddhist, buddhist caves, Buddhist monastery, buddhists gujarat, buddhists in India, buddhists monuments, Dalai Lama, Gujarat, Gujarat Government, indian buddhists, modi, Narendra Modi

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