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Wat Thairachaduta 60 monastery Darjeeling organised Maha Kathina ceremony

Maha Kathina ceremony
The only Thai monastery in the hills, Wat Thairachaduta 60 Darjeeling, organised a ceremony for Buddhist monks here today to mark its six-decade relations with India.
The Maha Kathina ceremony was held at the Gorkha Rangamanch Bhavan and was attended by the ambassador of Thailand to India, Chalit Manityakul, and Indian ambassador to Thailand, Harsh Vardhan Shringla, among others.
"Maha Kathina is a ritual in Thailand in which, offerings are made to Buddhist monks who come out of retreat during the rainy season. With the setting up of a monastery we are trying to strengthen the relations between the two places. There are lot of commonalities between the two places. The physical appearance of the people from the two regions is similar and Buddhism is practised in both the places. Many past ministers from Thailand have studied in Darjeeling and even today, there are about 300-400 Thai students studying in various schools of Darjeeling," Manityakul said on the sidelines of the event. The monastery was established in May. It is a temporary structure at the moment along 18 Lebong Cart Road in town.
"The name of the monastery is to celebrate 60 years of diplomatic relations between the two countries. Also (Thai royal princess Maha) Chakri Sirindhorn turned 60 this year," said Manityakul.
The monastery is under the aegis of the Royal Thai Monastery in Bodh Gaya.
"We have a Thai monastery in Calcutta as well. People from Thailand travel to India, especially along the Buddhist circuit. They also travel to different other places, right from Jammu and Kashmir to south India. People from Thailand are attracted to mountains," said Manityakul.
Nipon, a Thai monk in Darjeeling, said: "We are requesting the government to provide us with three acres" to build a permanent monastery.(TT)

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