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ASI team to bring back Buddha begging bowl from Kabul

New Delhi: Senior officials of Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) will visit Kabul by this month-end to examine the huge 400 kg begging bowl, said to belong to Gautam Buddha, and then initiate the process
PTI January 14, 2014 21:23 IST
PTI
New Delhi: Senior officials of Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) will visit Kabul by this month-end to examine the huge 400 kg begging bowl, said to belong to Gautam Buddha, and then initiate the process of bringing the relic back to India.

ASI Additional Director General B R Mani told PTI that the team of senior officials will study the bowl, a huge stone vessel currently displayed at the National Museum of Afghanistan, and initiate the process of bringing it back.  

Asked about the number of officials in the team, Mani said, “It could be two or more.”

However, he hastened to add, “The team will be selected and sent with the approval of the Culture Ministry and External Affairs Ministry.”

RJD MP Raghuvansh Prasad Singh has been demanding the return of the bowl and installing it at its original place at Vaishali, a Buddhist pilgrimage site in Bihar.  

Singh has raised the issue in Lok Sabha also.

According to ASI, Buddha donated the bowl to the people of Vaishali. Later on, it was taken to Peshawar and then to Kandahar and finally to Kabul.

The vessel made of greenish-grey granite with a diameter of about 1.75 metres, a height of almost four metres, and a thickness of 18 cm at its rim, has a delicate lotus petal design chiselled around its base.