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City to have Buddhist Chinese temple in future

Press Trust of India  |  Kolkata 

Chinese General today said the 50-year old Monastery in the city will be converted into a ''most modern'' Buddhist Chinese temple in future.

The monastery in the southern fringes of the city, is named after Hsuan Tsang, the famous seventh century Buddhist monk, scholar, traveller and from who travelled to in the seventh century.

The monastery had been set up by the local Chinese community about 50 years ago.

Chinese immigrants had arrived in the city in the 18th century to work at the They have contributed to the social and economic life of Kolkata through and trade of leather products, running of restaurants and beauty parlours. Their largest population is in the in the city.

Zhanwu, who was present at the foundation stone laying ceremony of the new complex within the compound of the old monastery building, told reporters that once completed the new temple will have the "most durable and most modern features" retaining the unique characteristics of a Buddhist temple in

Describing the foundation stone laying ceremony as a "good starting phase in terms of cultural exchanges between the two countries", the said, it will be made an important landmark in the entire East and a tourism spot for both domestic and foreign tourists.

The temple, once it is rebuilt with modern amenities, will be another step in promoting friendly exchange and cooperation between people of two great nations, enhance their mutual trust and push for continuous development in the bilateral ties, he said.

"We hope that the monastery will be more widely known to the people of and abroad," the Consul, whose office is participating in the renovation along with the monastery authorities, said.

had visited over 1400 years ago by the Silk Road and took large number of Buddhist scripts back to This had helped in development and spread of in China, he said.

"The story of is a very good example in the friendly exchange between the two nations and exemplified the Silk Road spirit featuring peaceful cooperation, inclusiveness, mutual learning," he said.

To a question about border disputes between the two countries, the Chinese briefly said "There are border issues between many countries."

The foundation stone laying ceremony was preceded by an elaborate colourful ritual which was conducted by monks from at in led by the Abbot Guangquan.

Monks attired in silk orange and brown robes chanted hymns amidst the beating of cymbals and moved in a procession with a Buddha idol to the spot where the foundation stone was laid. They then returned in a procession to the old monastery building.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, March 14 2018. 17:15 IST