India hosts 6th International Buddhist Conclave 2018

The four-day long Conclave was organized by the Ministry of Tourism in collaboration with the State Governments of Maharashtra, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh which host critical Buddhist pilgrimage sites

August 26, 2018

Events within the gamut of the conclave were held at New Delhi and Ajanta (Maharashtra), Rajgir, Nalanda and Bodhgaya (Bihar) and Sarnath (Uttar Pradesh)

India launched the Ministry of Tourism website highlighting important Buddhist sites - indiathelandofbuddha.in; Japan served as the partner country for IBC-2018

Besides ministerial level delegations from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar and Sri Lanka, delegates from 29 countries participated in the Buddhist Conclave

Indian Government organized an ‘Investors’ Summit’ during the Conclave to attract investments in developing world class infrastructure at Buddhist sites

India hosted the 6th International Buddhist Conclave over August 23-26. The Conclave was inaugurated by President of India, Ram Nath Kovind, along with the Minister of Tourism, KJ Alphons. The four-day long Conclave was organized by the Ministry of Tourism in collaboration with the State Governments of Maharashtra, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh – states hosting Buddhist relics of global importance. Events within the gamut of the conclave were held at New Delhi and Ajanta (Maharashtra), Rajgir, Nalanda and Bodhgaya (Bihar) and Sarnath (Uttar Pradesh). On the occasion, the President also launched the Ministry of Tourism website highlighting important Buddhist sites – indiathelandofbuddha.in.

President Kovind said that the voyage of Buddhism from India to Asia and beyond have facilitated strong cultural and in turn trade ties. Besides ministerial level delegations from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Myanmar and Sri Lanka participated in the conclave, delegates from 29 countries participated in the Conclave. These countries included Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brazil, Cambodia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Norway, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, UK, USA and Vietnam. The Indian Buddhist Heritage is of great interest to the followers of Buddhism the world over.

The aim of the Conclave is to showcase and project the Buddhist Heritage in India and boost tourism to the Buddhist sites in the country and cultivate friendly ties with countries and communities interested in Buddhism. The Conclave featured presentations by the Ministry of Tourism and State Governments, panel discussion between scholars and monks and meetings between foreign and Indian tour operators. The Ministry has also organized an ‘Investors’ Summit’ during the Conclave to attract investments in developing world class infrastructure at Buddhist sites. The Government has identified 17 sites in 12 clusters in the country for development under Iconic Tourist Sites Development Project.

Indian Government’s efforts target a market of around 500 million Buddhists worldwide, representing 7 per cent of the World’s population. For instance, Japan is promoting sightseeing tours of Buddhist sites in Japan to promote Buddhism. Buddhism has connected the culture of India, with that of countries in the region like Bhutan, China, Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Myanmar, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam. The ASEAN bloc was the guest of honor during IBC 2016 and Japan served as the partner country for IBC-2018.