Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday offered prayers at the sacred Maya Devi temple here in Nepal on the occasion of Buddha Purnima.
He was accompanied by his Nepalese counterpart Sher Bahadur Deuba during his visit to the historic temple, the birthplace of Gautam Buddha.
“Beginning the Nepal visit with prayers at the sacred Maya Devi Temple, Lumbini,” the Office of the Prime Minister of India tweeted.
“On the auspicious occasion of Buddha Purnima, both Prime Ministers offered pooja and prayers at the sacred Mayadevi temple in Lumbini, the birthplace of Gautam Buddha,” Nepal’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Twitter.
Modi, who is in the Himalayan nation at the invitation of Deuba, is paying a day-long visit to Lumbini on the occasion of Buddha Purnima.
”Landed in Nepal. Happy to be among the wonderful people of Nepal on the special occasion of Buddha Purnima. Looking forward to the programs in Lumbini,” Prime Minister Modi said on Twitter upon his arrival.
He was received by Deuba in Lumbini.
“I would like to thank PM @SherBDeuba for the warm welcome in Lumbini,” Modi said in a tweet.
It is the prime minister’s fifth visit to Nepal since 2014. Modi and his entourage arrived here on a special Indian Air Force helicopter from Kushinagar, Uttar Pradesh.
Lumbini, located in the Terai plains of southern Nepal, is one of the holiest places of Buddhism, as Lord Buddha was born there.
During the visit, he will deliver an address at the Buddha Jayanti celebrations organized by the Lumbini Development Trust.
The visiting Prime Minister will also participate in the foundation laying ceremony for the construction of a center for Buddhist Culture and heritage within the Lumbini Monastic Zone.