Monday, November 29, 2004

Lumbini jamboree all set to kick off

Razen Manandhar
Lumbini, November 29:

Preparations for the much-hyped Second World Buddhist Summit are complete, the organisers said today.

The over 2500 years old shrine has been selected as the venue for the international gathering of eads of states, political leaders, diplomats and religious leaders.
Hotels in Butwal, Bhairahawa and Lumbini bazaar as well as monasteries are all packed with delegates, observers and journalists.
Many are yet to find bedding space. A minor bomb blast, not far away from Lumbini, sent a ripple of fear among participants but they are committed to see the gathering to a successful ending.

"We are ready to welcome the distinguished guests," said host Deep Kumar Upadhyaya, the minister for culture, tourism and civil aviation. Organisers said that the two-day Rupandehi bandh,imposed by the Moist would not affect the gathering. Three working papers -- Indispensability of peace in the present world context, Lumbini's development and international cooperation, and developing Lumbini as a world peace city � will be presented during the three-day event.

Meanwhile, the local administration has picked up some 100 buses of the Western Nepal Bus Entrepreneurs' Association (WNBEA) and Siddhartha Transporters' Committee (STC) to be used during the Summit. The WNBEA and STC said force was used to vacate many vehicles carrying passengers and bringing others from the owners' houses.