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On the occasion of Buddha Purnima, PM Modi will pay a visit to Nepal's Lumbini on Monday, 16 May. At Lumbini, he will offer prayers at the sacred Mayadevi Temple and, separately, participate in the Shilanayas (foundation laying) ceremony of a Centre for Buddhist Culture and Heritage to be built with Indian assistance.

Hoardings have been put up all along the highway leading to Lumbini, hailing Indo-Nepal relations.

During his visit, PM Modi will also meet Nepali counterpart Sher Bahadur Deuba at Lumbini for bilateral talks.

This will be PM Modi's fifth visit to Nepal since 2014.

The significance of the timing of Prime Minister’s visit to Nepal is to coincide the inauguration of LumbiniBuddhist Centre with the Holy Vaishakha Buddha Purnima Divas. The day is recognized as the thrice blessed day that marks the Birth, Enlightenment and Mahaparinirvana of Lord Buddha. While Buddha was born in Lumbiniin Nepal, he attained enlightenment in Bodhgaya in Bihar, preached his first sermon at Sarnath and attained Nirvana in Kushinagar, in Uttar Pradesh.

Lumbini is the holy place where according to Buddhist tradition, Queen Mahamayadevi gave birth to Siddhartha Gautama at around 623 B.C. Lord Buddha, was born in the famous gardens of Lumbini, which soon became a place of pilgrimage.

Among the pilgrims was the Indian emperor Ashoka, who erected one of his commemorative pillars there. The site is now being developed as a Buddhist pilgrimage centre, where the archaeological remains associated with the birth of the Lord Buddha form a central feature.

 

 

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