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New Delhi, Feb 8 – As part of a walking pilgrimage that is being organised by the Sangwol Society of South Korea, 108 Buddhist pilgrims from the Republic of Korea will walk over 1,100 km over the course of 43 days, according to an announcement made today by Apurva Chandra, Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
Chandra noted that the event is more significant because India and South Korea are commemorating 50 years since their diplomatic relations were established. The purpose of the pilgrimage is to strengthen ties of friendship and cooperation between the two nations. The tourists will go to Nepal after visiting Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the Indian states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
The circuit tracks Buddha’s steps throughout his life and aims to assist travellers in experiencing Lord Buddha’s teachings firsthand. The pilgrimage’s destinations cover the Buddha’s entire life, from his birth to his Parinirvana.
The Secretary welcomed the pilgrims, assured them of the Indian government’s full support, and expressed the hope that their tour would help them better comprehend Buddhist philosophy.
The tourists will be on a 43-day tour to Buddhist holy sites in India and Nepal from February 9 to March 23, 2023. With the slogan ‘Oh, We! Oh Love! Oh, Life!’, the pilgrimage aims to spread Buddhist culture of devotional activities through a through a pilgrimage to India where the life and footsteps of the Buddha are preserved.
Ambassador of Republic of Korea to India Chang Jae-bok said that the year 2023 is special for the bilateral relation between the countries as the two celebrate this historic milestone of 50 years of diplomatic relations. This occasion coincides with India’s G20 Presidency and South Korea is committed to India’s success at G20, he added. The Ambassador further remarked that Buddhist teachings are similar to the motto of India’s G20 presidency ‘One Earth, One Family, One Future’.
Speaking on the religious ties between India and South Korea, the Ambassador said that the it evokes strong emotion and generates immense goodwill among the two peoples that fuels the bilateral relation. He further said that every year thousands of tourists visit India from Korea and this walking pilgrimage is being hosted by Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism. The walking pilgrimage will begin from Sarnath in Varanasi and will culminate at Shravasti after traversing through Nepal.
Informing media about the significance of this event, the Ambassador said that the mega Buddhist pilgrimage is a befitting tribute to our shared Buddhist heritage. This will go a long way in further deepening the people to people contact. He added that the pilgrims which include monks will
pay homage to eight major Buddhist holy sites,
experience Indian Buddhism and culture, and have a bilateral meeting of religious leaders and
hold a prayer assembly for world peace and a blessing ceremony for the dignity of life