New Delhi [India], October 20 (ANI): Union Minister for Culture and Tourism G Kishan Reddy will address the inaugural session of the conference "Tourism in Buddhist Circuits - A way forward" organised by the ministry in Uttar Pradesh's Kushinagar on Wednesday.
"The two-day conference will have several sessions highlighting Buddhist circuit and tourism The conference is expected to be attended by the tourism industry stakeholders, scholars and media," the Ministry of Tourism said.
India has a rich ancient Buddhist Heritage with several important sites associated with the life of Lord Buddha. Buddhist tourism has tremendous potential to draw Buddhism believers from across the world to India -The Land of Buddha. The Indian Buddhist Heritage is of great interest to the followers of Buddhism all over the world.
Kushinagar is one of the major pilgrimage centres for Buddhism followers from all over the world. Lord Buddha attained Mahaparinirvana in Kushinagar. It is one of the most important archaeological sites in India. The prime tourist attractions in Kushinagar includes the ancient Mahaparinirvana Temple- one of the most sacred shrines for Buddhists, Rambhar Stupa, Kushinagar Museum, Sun Temple, Nirvana Stupa, Matha Kuar Shrine, Watt Thai Temple, Chinese Temple, Japanese Temple.
Buddhism plays a vital role in the socio-cultural and political life of several major Asian partners as well as in strategically located border areas of India, such as Arunachal Pradesh, Ladakh and Sikkim. Therefore, Buddhism is not merely a pilgrimage, tourism or economic interest, but also of profound geopolitical significance for India. It is believed that around 535 million people around the world practice Buddhism, which would represent between 8 per cent to 10 per cent of the world's total population. India has been attracting pilgrims, monks and scholars for studying Buddhism from across the world and there is huge potential of India's Buddhist heritage for tourism, and also as an instrument for strengthening relations with other countries, especially with predominantly Buddhist countries.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will participate in an event marking Abhidhamma Day at the Mahaparinirvana Temple in Uttar Pradesh's Kushinagar on the auspicious occasion of Ashwin Poornima. (ANI)