16 May Political and strategic importance of Lumbini : An analysis in special context to PM’s visit
Political and strategic importance of Lumbini : An analysis in special context to PM’s visit – Today Current Affairs
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s scheduled visit to the Lumbini , a birthplace of the Mahatma Buddha , founder of Buddhism, would renew the political cultural relationship of India and Nepal . Lumbini is situated in Nepal and for India’s perspective Nepal is the most significant country for the security of India . However this visit of the PM would be of few hours only but this visit of the PM would have more political implications in changing geopolitical atmosphere of the world . For the last few decades no Indian prime minister has visited the Lumbini.
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The world is celebrating the birth anniversary of the Mahatma Buddha on 16th May 2022. Amid the strife and turmoil and the hatred atmosphere, the Buddha is more relevant in contemporary society . This tour of the PM also provides a moment for quiet reflection and a reiteration of the message of peace, compassion and non-violence preached by the Buddha and spread by the roaring lions in the four directions, as depicted in the Lion Capital of Ashoka, our national emblem
Cultural Importance of the Lumbini : The Hindu Analysis
It is the birthplace of the Mahatma Buddha. It is equal sacred place for the Buddhist people as Mecca for Muslims and the Jerusalem fir the Christians . Because of Buddhism , China has been continuously increasing her present and investment also. Recently the largest monastery has been built by the Chinese government. China is organizing several seminars and conferences on Buddhism in Lumbini. In pre-COVID-19 times, there was a steady flow of Chinese tourists to Lumbini and reports about potential Chinese investments in the region. In this way China is trying to bring Nepal closer to China emotionally .
There are many sacred places related to Buddhism in India . Bodh Gaya , where Buddha was enlightened and the Sarnath where lord Buddha delivered his first sacred speech and Kushinagar, the place of his mahaparinibbana are the most sacred places for Buddhism . And this is not counting Shravasti, where the Buddha preached for many years; Nalanda; and Rajgir, among several others. Therefore Culturally India is closer to Nepal . but unfortunately we could not use this privileges to provide our more representation in Lumbini . Only a small museum building was constructed with Indian assistance in the late 1990s. The Hindu Analysis
There are several monasteries in Nepal . The first foreign monastery in Lumbini was built by a Vietnamese monk, Thay Huyen Dieu. He subsequently built another one in Bodh Gaya. (In large part, due to his efforts, a visit to Bodh Gaya has become de rigueur for every visiting communist politician from Vietnam.) India does not have a monastery in Lumbini. Now we have an opportunity to increase our more representation in Lumbini after the Modi’s visit
an international committee for the development of Lumbini was set up by UNO 50 years ago and there is lot of scope through which India could increase her presence. Today Current Affairs
Both Gaya and Lumbini , both are UNESCO World Heritage sites. India could built infrastructure on both places and India could connect both places with the roads. However India is thinking in this regard but Unfortunately, talk has not fully translated into action. India is very much advanced in road network the link roads connecting Nepal with the Indian highway system need to be upgraded. It is a nightmare to cross the Sunauli-Bhairahawa India-Nepal check post along the Uttar Pradesh-Nepal border that is designated for tourists. India can take the initiative of a Buddhist circuit connecting all the sacred places of Buddhism . A master plan should be formed in this regard with the coordination of the central government and the state government as well as the foreign monetries . The monasteries are headed by monks who are greatly revered in their home countries and should be treated with respect and reverence. Efforts should be made for the entire Buddhist circuit, namely Lumbini-BodhGaya-Sarnath-Kushinagar, to be declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site with master plans for each segment of the circuit.
Today Current Affairs
The PM Modis; visit to Lumbini has more implications. India should take initiative for the development of the Buddhist circuit connecting all the sacred places of Buddhism . In this way India can increase her presence in the cultural relationship with Nepal. In comparison to China ,India has more opportunities to bring Nepal closer to herself . We should use this privilege and definitely the visit of the prime minister to Lumbini will strengthen the Indo Nepal relation .
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Source : The Hindu (Editorial)
GS Paper I, II