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Buddhist studies centre for 1,000-year-old monastery

Buddhist Monastery

Tabo, an ancient seat of Buddhist religion and culture in picturesque Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh in northern India, will now have an international learning centre.

Baudh Darshan, which will help preserve the ancient seat of Buddhist studies, will be set up at Tabo with a funding of Rs.45 crore by the central government. Founded in 996 AD, Tabo, known for a more than 1,000-year-old cave Buddhist monastery, is located at an altitude of 3,050 metres and 375 km from Shimla. It is also called the 'Ajanta of the Himalayas'.

Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, who took up the issue with former prime minister Manmohan Singh, said the proposed centre would help preserve and expand Buddhists studies. He said around 30 acres of land at Mohal Dhaang Chummi has been approved for the centre. Necessary clearances from the state forest department is expected to follow.

"The land will soon be transferred to the union ministry of culture for building the institute. The entire project cost of Rs.45 crore will be borne by the Indian government," Virbhadra Singh told IANS. "The institute will attract not only scholars from India but from across the globe," the chief minister said.