by admin | May 23, 2016 3:45 pm
The International Buddha Poornima Diwas 2016 was celebrated in New Delhi on 21 May 2016 to commemorate the thrice blessed day of Buddha’s birth, sambodhiprapti and mahaparinirvana, falling on the auspicious full moon day of the month of Vaishakh.
Shri Rajnath Singh, Union Minister for Home Affairs was the Chief Guest at this year’s celebrations. Dr. Mahesh Sharma, Minister of State for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, Shri Kiren Rijiju, Minister of State for Home Affairs and Shri Upendra Kushwaha, Minister of State for Human Resource Development graced the occasion. Ven Lama Lobzang, Secretary General International Buddhist Confederation, Shri Tempa Tsering, Representative of HH the Dalai Lama and Shri N.K. Sinha, Secretary, Ministry of Culture were also among the dignitaries present that included Members of Parliament and senior diplomats from various countries including Mongolia, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and China.
It may be recalled that speaking at the International Buddha Poornima Diwas function last year, the Honourable Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi had announced that Buddha Jayanti celebrations would henceforth occupy a prominent place on the Indian calendar, and be celebrated by the nation on a grand scale as an annual event.
The 2016 celebration was marked by a song by the Chakma Buddhist Society, screening of a film on Buddha produced by the International Chamber of Service Industries, Dharma talk by Prof. Geshe Ngawang Samten, guided meditation by Dharmacharya Shantum Seth Mangalacharan in Pali and Sanskrit traditions and a song by a Ladakhi children’s choir from the Mahabodhi School, Chandigarh.
The occasion was also marked by the presentation of the “Vesak Samman Prashasti Patra-2016” awards to Shri Ramesh Chandra Tiwari, Professor Geshe Ngawang Samten, Dharmachari Lokamitra, and Bhadanta Galgedar Prajnananda Mahasthavir in recognition of their outstanding contribution to the preservation, development and promotion of Indian arts and culture, and promotion and dissemination of Buddhist studies.
Delivering the welcome address, Dr. Mahesh Sharma said that out of the eight sacred sites of Buddhism, seven are situated in India. The Ministry of Tourism has launched a programme named “Swadesh Darshan” which conveniently connects three of the four holiest sites, namely Bodh Gaya, Sarnath and Kushinagar through a special component called the “Buddhist Circuit”. He assured the audience that his three ministries viz. Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation would work wholeheartedly to make the programme a success.
Shri Kiran Rijuju, Minister of State for Home Affairs said that there is no match to our spiritual powers. Government of India attaches great importance to Buddh Poornima and now onwards it will be celebrated every year like this.
Shri Upendra Kushwaha, Minister of State for Human Resources Development said that the message of Buddha is purely scientific, and contains the solutions to all problems faced by humankind today. We have to spread his message worldwide.
Speaking on the occasion, the Chief Guest, Shri Rajnath Singh, said that India is blessed to be the land where Buddhism originated, and is proud that 3 of the 4 holiest sites connected to the life of Buddha are in India. He said that although the number of Buddhists in India is small as compared to the total population, yet Buddhist philosophy and Buddhist values are deeply ingrained in the Indian psyche. He thanked the organizers for inviting him as Chief Guest, and added that the government is determined to give Buddha Poornima the place that it richly deserves in the Indian calendar.
The programme ended with a formal vote of thanks by Ven. Lama Lobzang, Convener of the organizing committee and Secretary General of IBC, followed by the National Anthem rendered by the choir of the Mahabodhi School, Chandigarh.
To oversee the organization of these celebrations, an Organizing Committee had been set up under the Chairmanship of the Honourable Minister of State for Culture, Dr. Mahesh Sharma, with the Honourable Minister of State for Home, Shri Kiren Rijiju and the Honourable Minister of State for HRD, Shri Upendra Kushwaha as Co-chairpersons. Ven. Lama Lobzang, Secretary General of the International Buddhist Confederation (IBC), was Convener of the Organizing Committee. Members of the committee were all respected leaders of the Buddhist community in India spanning various Buddhist traditions and belonging to different Buddhist organizations from various states of the country.
The organization of the event was coordinated by IBC.
Source URL: http://ibcworld.org/ibc-celebrates-international-buddha-poornima-diwas/
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