Guj govt speed up preservation of Buddhist sites for tourism

The Gujarat government has accelerated efforts for preservation of sites that are going to be part of the Buddhist tourism circuit comprising caves in Saurashtra and remains of Buddhist monastery in Central Gujarat region.

Last Updated: Apr 04, 2011, 12:06 PM IST

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat government has
accelerated efforts for preservation of sites that are going to be part of the Buddhist tourism circuit comprising caves in Saurashtra and remains of Buddhist monastery in Central
Gujarat region.

While the proposal for Buddhist tourism circuit awaits
approval from the Centre, Gujarat government has sped up
work on preservation of ancient Buddhist caves and sites which
are presently being excavated by the Archaeological Survey of
India (ASI).

Chief minister Narendra Modi himself has taken keen
interest in the activities and had recently visited the
excavation site in Vadnagar of Mehsana district in North
Gujarat to take stock of the works taken up there.
"In ancient times thousands of Buddhist monks were
coming to Vadnagar in search of spiritual knowledge. It is
believed that eastern belt of India is especially influenced
by Buddha but with the finding of Buddhist relics in Vadnagar,
an opportunity to study his influence on western belt has also
opened up," Modi said during his visit.

According to an official of the department of youth
and Cultural affairs, they plan to built a shed made out of
special fibre to protect the Vadnagar excavation site from
rain and other disturbances.

"We also plan to erect a cultural wall that would
display the relics of the Buddhist monastery and coins. An
amount of Rs 40 lakh has been allocated for it," the official
said on the condition of anonymity.

PTI