Protesting the terror attack at the Mahabodhi Temple in Bodhgaya, Buddhist monks and followers on Sunday held a candlelight vigil at Lepakshi and Ambedkar Statue, Tank Bund.
Anand, a monk at the Anandha Buddha Vihar Trust, said, “The culprits don’t understand the significance of the temple. They might have attacked it out of ignorance.” Monks of the trust chanted Jayamangala Atta Gatha verses praying that the terrorists might get knowledge. “We are also chanting prayers to maintain peace and for the benefit of all creatures on earth,” said Anand.
Sambavathi, also a monk, said ,"This incident has deeply hurt me. Destroyers of Buddha’s statues at Bamiyan in Afghanistan were punished. Attackers of the Bodh Gaya will also meet with the same fate.” She demanded immediate arrest of the culprits. Anand pointed out that the Buddhist community is very small in India and requested the state and central governments to provide protection to Buddhist temples and the community.
Mallepalli Lakshmaiah, president of the Neo-Buddhist Society, said there was no scope for terrorism or any kind of violence in Buddhism. He said, “If there is any problem with Buddhism, it can be discussed peacefully. These kind of attacks will only aggravate the problem.”
Maheshwar Raj, State president of the All India Confederation of SC & ST organisations, said Bodhgaya was not only a place of worship for Buddhists but also a very historic place. “The culprits should be considered terrorists, but the act should not be associated with any religion,” he said.