A high-level committee comprising Buddhist scholars and monks is likely to be formed by the government to suggest the modalities for shifting Buddha’s relics to the Buddha Memorial Park being developed in the state capital.
Senior Buddhist leader Dalai Lama has been contacted to become a part of this committee, which will provide guidelines to the project and safeguard the last remains of Buddha.
On Monday, a three-member team of government officials visited Dharmashala in Himachal Pradesh to consult the Buddhist religious leaders in this connection.
Others expected to be involved in the proposed committee include Chandil, Chairman of the Mahabodhi Temple Management Committee and Naveen Sharma, a Buddhist scholar.
The Buddha relic is presently in the safekeep of the Patna Museum gallery.
Soon after coming to power, the present government had planned a huge Buddha Memorial Park in the city with a meditation hall and a display gallery along with some other tourist facilities. During a recent visit to the Memorial Park under construction, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar asked the officials to complete the project by April this year.
But there has been a long pending demand of one group of people to take the ashes back to Vaishali where it was discovered during a digging in 50s and was later shifted to the Patna Museum for security purposes.
Yet another group of Buddhists want the ashes to be displayed at Bodh Gaya, the site where Buddha attained enlightenment.
“We are in Dharmshala to consult Dalai Lama on how to bring Buddha’s relics to the Buddha Memorial Park. There is also an effort to involve him in the proposed committee also along with other Buddhist monks,” confirmed one among the three-member team at Dharmashala.
An official of the Infrastructure Development Finance Company (IDFC) handling the construction of the Patna based memorial park, said that the project involved around Rs 125 crore. “There are efforts to avoid any controversy.
Every aspect of the proposed Stupa over Buddh’a relics has to be considered before going ahead. Contractors have been asked to complete it by April this year,” he said.