Buddhist Circuit, Char Dham, Hastinapur, Indian Pilgrimage tourism, Kurukshetra's Ranbhumi(battlefield), Mahabharata, Mahabharata circuit an addition to the pilgrimage tourism, Media India Group., Megha Gupta, Sarnath, Uttar Pradesh tourism, Uttar Pradesh tourism minister Kawkab Hameed
Pronounced as one of the biggest wars that lasted for over 18 days, Mahabharata turned the battlefield in Kurukshetra (Haryana) red. It was called the Dharam Yudh (Justice War). One of the greatest epics in the Hindu mythology written by the sage Ved Vyas based in the period between 400 CE to 200 CE, Mahabharata depicts the war between two group of cousins Pnadavas (sons of King pandav) and Kauravas (sons of a blind King, Dhritrashtra) for the throne of Hastinapur (now in Uttar Pradesh) and simultaneously an important source of information for the development of Hinduism. In an effort to bring the places and stories from the epic into life, Uttar Pradesh government is developing Mahabharata circuit that would connect the key places in Mahabharata.
The circuit will connect three major places of the Ved Vyasa’s epic i.e., Hastinapur, Kampilya and Ahichchhatra. Hastinapur was the King’s landing and the capital of the Kuru clan that is located near Meerut. Whereas Kampilya, called Kampil now, near Farrukhabad is believed to be the birthplace of Draupadi, the wife of Pandavas (five brothers). The third site is Ahichchhatra or Panchal Desha, which have been discovered near Ramnagar village in Bareilly. It was the kingdom of King Panchal, father of Draupadi.
India is known for its pilgrimage and spiritual tourism. Banaras, Haridwar and the famous Char Dham (the four abode) are a few of the attractions of religious tourism. 33o million deities in India reflect the faith and devotion of India.
Every year lakhs of foreigners visit country to explore religious tourism. India being a culturally diverse country has many stories and rituals that lure foreigners to research on the deep-rooted customs of India. These circuits serve as a good appetite for their curiosity.
Buddhist circuit is the biggest one connecting all the holy sites related to Buddhism, his birth place Lumbini, place he attained enlightenment Bodhgaya, preaching place Sarnath and the place he reached Nirvana Kushinagar.
Mahabharata circuit will be an addition to the UP tourism. It will give face to the imagination and thus will not merely be connecting places but the hearts and faith as well. Mahabharata circuit will also promote Haryana and boost the UP tourism.
The project is expected to cost INR 80 million and the state tourism minister Kawkab Hameed has submitted a proposal to the central government to grant money for the development of the circuit.
Hameed talking about the places in circuit said, “Efforts are also on to pinpoint the spot where Lord Krishna preached ‘Bhagvad Gita,’ the gospel of duty, to Arjun at the onset of the great battle of Mahabharat”.
Director general, UP Tourism, Amrit Abhijat, said, “Linking these sites is not the only thing being worked upon. The plan also includes the development of tourist infrastructure in the selected destinations. Besides this, we would also be promoting the important Buddhist and Jain sites falling in the districts.”