Leh: Sept. 16, 2013. (VisitLadakh.com) – The 2nd International Festival of Buddhist Heritage of Ladakh began here today with great festivity at Sindhu Sanskriti Kendre (SSK) which was inaugurated by the Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Ghulam Nabi Azad. The festival is supported by Ministry of Tourism, J&K State, Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council ( LAHDC) and all Ladakh Gonpa Association ( ALGA).
Addressing to the jam packed auditorium of SSK, Gh. Nabi Azad said that Buddhism has admired the people world over for peace, tranquility and serenity and holding of such a festival on the heritage of Buddhist here with colossal participation from many parts of the world would play a great role in exchanging the harmonious experiences and uniting the diverse people in the world. The Minister said that during the three days festival showcasing the values of Buddhism through films, photo exhibition, heritage visits, cultural programs, monastic dances, meditations and Yogas and witnessing talks by the eminent masters and scholars would surely help in further promotion of peace and amity in the universe.
Referring to late Bakula Rinpochey as a great son of India, a statesman and a huge diplomat who had significantly contributed for reviving the ties with some important countries, Azad said that Bakula had immensely worked in spreading education awareness in Ladakh in those days when most of the Ladakhis were unaware of the importance of education.
Mentioning the rapid development taken place in Leh district during the recent times, Gh. Nabi Azad credited Nawang Rigzin Jora for his energetic approach and termed him as an unimpeachable minister in the State. The Minister also made a mention of dynamism and vitality working manner of CEC, LAHDC, Leh Rigzin Spalbar that has put Leh on growth and development.
Appreciating the vision and initiatives of Bikhu Sangha Sena, the Director and Founder of Mahabodhi International Meditation Centre (MIMC) , Ghulam Nabi Azad said that he has contributed a lot specially for the underprivileged and needy people in different ways with special focus on the education of children from poor families of remote areas.
Shri Nawang Rigzin Jora in his address strongly urged for promotion of intangible values such as truthfulness, broadmindedness and calmness inspite of talking much on tangible things. He said that religion is purely a personal affair and said that we must follow the core values of the religion rather than indulging in ritual and ceremonial things.
The CEC, Rigzin Spalbar on behalf of the people of Ladakh extended heartiest welcome to Gh. Nabi Azad for his visit to Ladakh and reiterated that Azad Sahib has always been a true friend as well as a well wisher of Ladakh while highlighting the his contribution towards Ladakh region that has tremendously helps the region to move on the progressive path.
Making a mention of meritorious works done by Bikhu Sangha Sena, working selflessly in serving and uplifting the downtrodden people with scores of welfare programs, CEC termed him as a light of Ladakh.
While expressing his view guest of honour Skyabje Thuksay Rinpochey in his speech appreciated the organizing committee and all stakeholders for making the festival successful for the second consecutive year and likewise many delegates from various countries as well as different states of the country also spoke on the inaugural function.
Earlier, Bikhu Sanga Sena in his welcome address highlighted the purpose of the Buddhist Heritage Festival with main focusing to make Ladakh an international Buddhist pilgrimages destination in Asia where the visiting tourists truly feel the essence of spirituality and get relieve from hectic life schedule.
On the occasion a souvenir Book was also released by the minister.
To mark the occasion, a scintillating cultural program which include an enchanting melodious Buddhist chanting by renown vocalist Aney Choyang Dolma from Nepal besides spectacular mask dance by the monks of Hemis monastery enthralled the jump packed audience.
Eminent delegates from Germany, Holland, Hong Kong, India, Repubic of Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Nepal, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Taiwan, USA, Thailand and India.