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Kalachakra Puja ends with a Long Life Prayer His Holiness the Dalai Lama arrives at Sarnath

Bodh Gaya, January 20, 2003: The 28th Kalachakra puja came to an end this morning with a long life puja for His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

His Holiness conferred a long life empowerment to the devotees.

Referring to Bodh Gaya as the most sacred place for the Buddhists, His Holiness prayed and hoped that everyone present here will be able to visit Bodh Gaya again.

The Kalon (Minister) for Religion and Culture of Central Tibetan Administration, Mr.Thupten Lungrig, expressed a great satisfaction over the successful conclusion of this mega religious event, and said, "We are deeply grateful to His Holiness the Dalai Lama for blessing us with the Kalachakra puja at this most sacred place of our pilgrimage".

The Kalon, on behalf of the Department of Religion and Culture and the 17 sponsors of the Kalachakra puja, also expressed profound appreciation and gratitude to the Government of Bihar and the District Administration of Gaya for extending every possible support and assistance for organizing the Kalachakra puja, and added, "the successful conduct of the Kalachakra puja at this scale is made possible only with the whole hearted support and cooperation of the Government and people of Bihar, and Bodh Gaya will remain as the most sacred pilgrimage site for us as ever before".

His Holiness the Dalai Lama arrived at the Kalachakra temple at 7 this morning, and conferred a long life empowerment to about 150 thousand devotees gathered here from across the globe to attend the Kalachakra puja, which began on 12th January.

The 17 sponsors of the Kalachakra puja offered Tenshug (Long Life Offering) to His Holiness, and the devotees joined in to pray for the long life of His Holiness.

On this auspicious occasion this morning, His Holiness the Dalai Lama announced the appointment of Ven.

Lungrig Namgyal as the new Gaden Tripa, a holder of the throne of Gaden.Ven. Lungrig Namgyal has become the 101st head of the Gelug School of Tibetan Buddhism.

His Holiness blessed the new head of the Gelug sect. The retiring Gaden Tripa, Ven. Lobsang Nyima, was also present at the ceremony at the Kalachakra temple.

The head of the Gelug School, known as Gaden Tripa, is appointed on the basis of many years of their academic excellence in Buddhism.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama left Bodh Gaya at about 3:20 a special flight and arrived in Sarnath later in the afternoon.

His Holiness will attend a religious meeting of the Heads of Tibetan Buddhism at the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies at Varanasi.

Before departing from here, His Holiness paid a visit to the main stupa and offered prayers there.

Gyalwa Karmapa Rinpoche left for Sarnath this afternoon by road.

The Kalachakra Initiation, completed yesterday, was attended by about 150 thousand devotees, of which 13,000 were monks and nuns from monasteries.

Over 2,000 foreigners from a hundred different countries and about 2,300 Tibetans from Tibet attended the Kalachakra Initiation.

165 media persons from all over the world had registered to cover this religious event.

The public viewing of the Kalachakra Mandala began this afternoon and it is still going on.

The next Kalachakra puja will be held from April 23 to May 6, 2004 at Toronto in Canada.

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Kalon Tripa Prof.Samdhong Rinpoche, who arrived in Bodh Gaya on January 18th, was a Chief Guest at the Conference on the Freedom of Tibet and the Role of India organized by the Indo-Tibetan Friendship Society, Eastern Zone, at the Magadh University in Bodh Gaya this afternoon.

The Conference was addressed by Shri Vashist Narayan Singh (MP), Dr.Surendra Prasad, Minister in the Bihar State Govt., and Shri Ramchandra Khan, President of ITFS, Bihar chapter.

The meeting was presided over by Shri Abhimanyu Singh, Vice-Chancellor of Magadh University.

Kalon Tripa left for Delhi this evening.

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