May 19, Colombo: Recognizing the close cultural relationship between the two countries, India is organizing several cultural events in Sri Lanka to commemorate the 2600th anniversary of Buddha’s Enlightenment, a press release issued by the High Commission of India in Colombo said.
At the request of Sri Lanka Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa as a part of the activities commemorating the event, Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR), has sponsored a recital “Nirvana- the life of Gautam Budha” performed by the Odissi Dance Troupe at the BMICH Exhibition Centre in Colombo from 18-21 May 2011.
The ICCR has also organized a photographic exhibition “Buddhism in India” by renowned photographer Sondeep Shankar at the BMICH from 18-22 May 2011.
India’s contribution to the Sambuddhathva Jayanthi celebrations also include screening of a film “Gautam Buddha” by famous Director Bimal Roy and screening of documentaries “The Oneness of creation”, “The Path of Compassion”, “The Land of Buddha”and “Path of Buddha” at the BMICH and Independence square.
The other activities being undertaken by India to commemorate the Sambuddhathva Jayanthi celebrations include an exposition of the Kapilvastu Relics in Sri Lanka later this year, setting up of an Indian Gallery at the International Buddhist Museum in Kandy and installation of a 16 feet high idol of Lord Buddha in the Sarnath style from the Gupta Period at the entrance of the International Buddhist Museum complex in Sri Dalada Maligawa in Kandy.
Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa on March 20, 2011 inaugurated the International Buddhist Conference at Sri Lanka International Buddhist Academy (SIBA), which was also organized by the ICCR as part of the joint commemoration by India and Sri Lanka of the Sambuddhathva Jayanthi.