Nitish inaugurates Bodh Mahotsava in Bodh Gaya

Patna,(BiharTimes): Chief minister Nitish Kumar on Wednesday evening inaugurated the three-day Bodh Mahotsava in Bodh Gaya amidst chanting of Buddhist mantras and peace prayer by a group of monks.

Speaking on the occasion he expressed happiness over the decision of the organisers to dedicate the festival to King Ashoka and recalled the Emperor’s contribution to peace and in spread of Buddhism.

Reiterating the state government’s resolve to provide additional 100 acres of land to the Airport Authority of India for the expansion of the runway he acknowledged that Gaya airport is much superior to the Patna airport.

The chief minister also urged the Centre to ensure regular all season air service to Bodh Gaya, which is presently restricted to the tourist season between October and March.

According to him the proposed four-laning of Patna-Dobhi Road via Bodh Gaya, which got the Centre’s nod recently, would significantly bring down the travel time. This National Highway is being built with the financial assistance of Japan.

Nitish praised Buddhism for its conflict resolution mechanism.

In his address, Buddhist spiritual leader Sheshen Rinpoche lauded the efforts made for the all round development of the state and Bodh Gaya. The function was presided over by tourism minister Sunil Kumar Pintoo.

Cultural troupes from Japan, Bhutan, Sri Lanka etc added colour to the event.

The other presentations included GiniSisila and Naga Gurulu dance, a popular dance form of Sri Lanka.
Earlier, while on way to Bodh Gaya from Rajgir the chief minister paid a visit to Ayer also known as Budhwan in Jethian block of Gaya district. He emphasized the need to develop Budhwan as well as the sublime path Buddha had passed through in course to his journey to Sarnath after attaining enlightenment in Bodh Gaya.

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