Buddhist Maha Stupa set to entice tourists

Buddhist Maha Stupa set to entice tourists
Highlights

Nelakondapalli (Khammam): The majestic Buddhist Maha Stupa, which was believed to have built before 350 BC and older than the one at Amaravati, near Nelakondapalli, the birthplace of Saint composer Bhakta Ramadasu, is set to catch the eye of world tourism soon.

Nelakondapalli (Khammam): The majestic Buddhist Maha Stupa, which was believed to have built before 350 BC and older than the one at Amaravati, near Nelakondapalli, the birthplace of Saint composer Bhakta Ramadasu, is set to catch the eye of world tourism soon.

The fact is that despite its historical and cultural significance, the Maha Stupa, 257 kms southeast of State capital Hyderabad, never got its due with the successive governments turning a blind eye to this hemispheric structure that withstood the wear and tear of time. The height of the Stupa is 54 feet with a radius of 106 feet.

The first excavation carried out in 1976 and the experimental survey executed by the National Geophysical Research Institute, Hyderabad, revealed some startling revelations.

What was hitherto known as mythological seat of King Virata turned to be 52-layer Buddhist Maha Stupa constructed with well burnt bricks, similar to those found at Nagarjunakonda and Amaravathi.

Subsequent excavations revealed five-tier spoke Stupa with four Ayaka platforms on four cardinal points and three pradakshina pathams at three different levels. The excavation findings suggest that the Stupa was constructed during the times of Ikshvaku dynasty.

The three oil caldrons carved out of black stone found a kilometer from the Stupa not only suggest that there was a cooperative of oil merchants in the region but also presence of human civilisation from pre-historic days.

However the surface evidences suggest that there are several structures associated with the Stupa are spread across 10 acres, they remained hidden treasure.

But for the Rs 60 lakh restoration works taken up by the Department of Archaelogy and Museums in 2015, the Stupa, one of the pride possessions of Telangana, remained neglected.

Against this backdrop, the two-day Global Celebration on Buddhist Heritage in Telangana-2017 event organised by Telangana State Tourism Development Corporation in Hyderabad has come like shot in the arm for the Buddhist sites in the State.

Delegates, including 40 monks and others across from 16 countries, who visited Maha Stupa on Sunday as part of the field trip arranged by the State government, were dumbstruck seeing the gigantic Stupa, Pagadala Nagaraju, the Assistant Director of Archaeolgical Department, Nalgonda and Mahbubnagar districts, told The Hans India, who was accompanying the delegation.

The delegates didn’t imagine the kind of gigantic Stupa remained unnoticed for so long, he said, expressing hope that Stupa now stands to gain popularity in other countries. With this, the foreign tourist footfall is likely to go up invariably helping the tourism development in the region, he added.

Some of the monks opined that there is scope for expanding Buddhism in the region if a Buddhist School is established. “I never saw such a huge Stupa and it's a must see place in the world,” Yalagamuwe Dhammissara, a monk from Sri Lanka said.

“The drought Nelakondapalli region is experiencing will be eradicated if you bring back the Dharma of Buddha,” Sumedh from Lalithpur, Jhansi in Bhopal, said, appealing to people to memorise and practice at least a few from the 84,000 suktas of Buddhism.

Show Full Article
Download The Hans India Android App or iOS App for the Latest update on your phone.
Subscribed Failed...
Subscribed Successfully...
More Stories


Top