Vesak is widely celebrated in Nepal as Buddha Jayanthi, paying homage to the Buddha who was born as Prince Siddhartha to King Suddhodana of the Shakya dynasty of Kapilavastu, and Queen Maya Devi, in present day Tilaurakot of Nepal. Queen Maya Devi gave birth in the Lumbini garden, while on the way to her maternal home in Devdaha, in Rupandehi district of modern day Nepal. This year marks the 2565th Buddha Jayanthi.
The Embassy of Sri Lanka celebrated this triple blessed occasion giving priority to religious observances. Ambassador and staff participated in religious observances in the morning of Vesak Day (26 May) at the Ananda Kuti Vihar in Kathmandu, which has historic links with Sri Lanka, and is the first Theravada Monastery in modern Nepal. Special religious observances were conducted by the resident monks with chanting of pirith and offering of Buddha Pooja to the Sacred Relics of the Buddha, enshrined in the Chaitya. These Sacred Relics were a gift from Sri Lanka to the Anand Kuti Vihar, symbolizing the strong Buddhist links between the two countries. The religious ceremony was followed by offering of morning alms to the resident monks.
Given the hardships brought on by the COVID pandemic in Nepal, the Embassy also contributed towards the distribution of food and other essential items to people rendered helpless and deprived due to the pandemic in the capital city. This was done through H.T. Foundation, Nepal, a social organization helping needy people through distribution of cooked food, dry rations and supply of oxygen to COVID patients during this difficult time.
The Chancery and the Official Residence were decorated with Buddhist flags and illuminated with Vesak lanterns in keeping with Sri Lankan traditions of the Vesak festival.
Sri Lanka Embassy
28 May 2021