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Last updated: May 21, 2002
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Stalemate over Kalacakra Maidan
Bodhgaya 21 May. Buddha Purnima, [the full moon celebrating the night of Buddha's enlightenment:- PGF] will be celebrated in five nights in Bodhgaya the site of the Buddha's enlightenment. Over this there is a stalemate between the Temple Management Committee and the All India Monks Association regarding holding programs on the Kalacakra Maidan [an open space in Bodhgaya:-PGF]. Both organizations have announced they are holding programs on that site on the occasion of Buddha's Jubilee.
Every year a Buddha Jubilee program is held by the Mahabodhi Temple Management Committee on the occasion of the forthcoming Buddha Purnima full moon with its main program in the Temple compound. On this occasion along with special puja rites and rituals there is a program of distribution of blessed food. But on this occasion the committee has also organised a cultural programme to be held in the evening on the Kalacakra Maidan. Meanwhile, the All India Monks Association has organised the accommodation of the New Buddhists [Ambedkarite Buddhists:-PGF] on the very same Kalacakra Maidan itself. The New Buddhists will start arriving from the 24th, the Buddha Jubilee is on the 26th.
There is a stalemate between the Temple Management Committee and its cultural program and the All India Monks Association and its arrangements for accommodation on the Kalacakra Maidan. The National Secretary of the All India Monks Association the Venerable Ananda says that for the last three years they have arranged a Buddha Jubilee program and accomodation on the Kalacakra Maidan. Concerning this matter they had informed the DM and the management committee three months ago. But the DM had not taken seriously this important Jubilee of the Association and had made no arrangements for the convenience and well-being of the followers of the Buddha. According to the Venerable Ananda thousands of Buddhists would be arriving two days before the forthcoming Jubilee on the 26th of May to celebrate. He said that arrangements to house them were being made in that location. Whilst the Management Committee has also been making arrangements for its cultural program on the very same spot.
Due to both organizations announcing programs on the same spot there has been a stalemate created. Whilst for the District Administration it has made its moment for testing come closer. New Buddhists have been coming to Bodhgaya to celebrate Buddha Purnima in fair numbers for the last decade. Recently due to some New Buddhists fasting and engaging in various campaigning activities the Administration has not been pleased with them. In such circumstances it maybe that some New-Buddhists may under the banner of the All India Monks Association raise slogans for the liberation of the Mahabodhi Temple which may be a cause of worry to the administration.

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Texts and Translations © Peter G. Friedlander unless otherwise indicated.