| Mahabodhi Mahavihara |
The Bodhgaya Temple Management Committee (BTMC) is yet to announce the schedule for the annual peace puja this year.
Usually, the events, that begin in October and end in mid-March are announced by July-end or latest by first week of August. BTMC had released the annual prayer schedule for the 2012-13 tourist season on July 14 last year.
Sources say the reason behind the delay this year is that some organisers are yet to confirm their participation. Usually, BTMC approves the schedule after confirmation, prepares the calendar for annual events and uploads it on its website.
Normally, organisers send their confirmation letters to BTMC by May. Sources say the serial blasts at Bodhgaya on July 7 could be behind the delay. BTMC secretary Nangzey Dorjee, however, claimed there was no confusion regarding security of devotees and tourists. He said: “The schedule for annual events of world peace puja performances will soon be uploaded on the BTMC portal. We expect to upload it in the first week of September.”
“Mahabodhi Mahavihara is the most sacred place for Buddhists. The temple is for puja performances and annual prayers will be held without any hindrance this year too,” Dorjee said.
All India Bhikkhu Sangh office-bearer Bhikkhu Pragyadeep said: “Different prayers are held every year, mostly under the sacred Bodhi tree. The 10-day Tipitaka Chanting ceremony has a fixed schedule from December 2 to 12 every year. Most organisers have sent their confirmation letters to BTMC and now the committee has to confirm and release the annual calendar.”
A large number of monks, nuns, devotees and tourists from Japan, Thailand, Bhutan, Myanmar, Combodia, Vietnam, Tibet, China and other countries take part in the annual peace puja performances organised every year.
The important annual events of peace puja performances include the Tipitaka Chanting Ceremony organised by International Tipitaka Chanting Council, the International Kagyupa Monlam Chenmo conducted by Kagyupa International Trust, Kagyu Monlam by Kagyu Monlam Organising Committee, Water Land Puja organised by All India Bhikkhu Sangh, and Nyingma Monlam Chenmo prayer by Nyingma Monlam Chenmo International Foundation.
Apart from these events, Palden Gyalwa Jonang Pay Monlam organised by Jonang Monlam Chenmo Committee, Dudjom Thromai Tshogbum Chenmo’s Throema Puja conducted by Dudjom Thromai Tshogbum Chenmo and the Khanpo Jigme Phuntsok Dechod Monlam by Dechod Organising Committee are the other attractions at Bodhgaya during the tourist season from October to mid-March.