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Buddhist Circuit connecting Sanchi to Bodhgaya and Sarnath being developed by MP Tourism Board

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Senior Correspondent

BHOPAL: The Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board is developing a Buddhist Circuit to attract Buddhist pilgrims around the globe.

The circuit will connect Sanchi and other destinations in the state with Bodhgaya and Sarnath, two major centres of Buddhism of the country. The information was shared on the eve of Buddha Jayanti (May 23).

The aim is to inform Buddhist pilgrims visiting these places about the Buddhist heritage destinations in Madhya Pradesh. The Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board is making significant efforts to connect, develop, and promote major sites related to the life values of Gautam Buddha.

Principal Secretary Culture and Tourism Department and Managing Director M.P. Tourism Board Sheo Shekhar Shukla said "Destinations associated with Lord Buddha (Buddhist Circuit) are a major center for Buddhist pilgrims from all over the world. There are also some such places on the holy land of Madhya Pradesh, which are adorned with their life values. These places are of great historical, cultural and spiritual importance.”

Shukla further said “ Under the Swadesh Darshan scheme, the Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board has spent Rs. 70 crore to develop destinations like Sanchi, Mandsaur, Dhar, Satna, Rewa, Satdhara, Sonari, Murel Khurd, and Gyarsapur. Approach roads, meditation centers, interpretation centers, Buddhist theme parks, tourist facilitation centers, and route facilitation centres have been developed here for the convenience of Buddhist pilgrims and tourists."

Efforts are being made to encourage pilgrims and tourists visiting religious centres like Bodhgaya, Sarnath, and Kushinagar to come to Sanchi and other destinations in Madhya Pradesh.

Meditation hall and beautification for a serene ambience

The development of Marshall House, foothill, approach roads, the hilltop, light and sound show, tourist facilitation centre in Sanchi, landscaping around Chaitanya Giri Vihar, development and beautification of Kanak Sagar Lake situated at the foot of Sanchi, Buddhist theme park, beautification and development of Square Road Junction, development and beautification of the path from railway station to stupa foothill, meditation kiosk and complex work in Satdhara, Sonari, Murel Khurda and Gyarsapur near Sanchi are included.

Efforts to establish Sanchi as a major Buddhist centre

Additional Managing Director of Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board, Bidisha Mukherjee said that special efforts are being made to establish Sanchi as a major Buddhist center at the national and international level. Recently, the Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board took the holy relics of Arhant Sariputta and Arhant Mahamoggallan, the disciples of Lord Buddha kept in the Buddhist stupa complex of Sanchi, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to Bangkok, Thailand and Cambodia Vihar for darshan. A large number of Buddhist followers from different countries of the world came to see the holy relics of Lord Buddha and his disciples and were excited to come to Sanchi.

Historical Buddhist circuit

Buddhist followers from all over the world entered Madhya Pradesh from Deurkothar (Rewa) via Lumbini, Bodhgaya, Sarnath to Kushinagar. From here, they would reach Sanchi via Barhut Stupa Satna and then Satdhara, Sonari, Andher, and Murelkhurd to Ujjain. From here they would visit all the Dharmnar and then the Bagh Caves and cross the Narmada and Tapti rivers to reach Ajanta and Amaravati and then South India and from there they would depart for Sri Lanka.