Sinhala translation of 'Buddhist Gandhara - History, Art and Architecture'

Sunday Observer, Sept 9, 2007

Colombo, Sri Lanka -- The High Commission for Pakistan in Colombo will launch a Sinhala translation of the famous book "Buddhist Gandhara - History, Art and Architecture" written by Ihsan H. Nadiem. The book has been translated by M. S. Hussain, with an expert review by Prof. Anura Wickremesinghe of the Colombo University.

The book launching ceremony will be held tomorrow, a media release from the High Commission of Pakistan said.

The author of the book, Ihsan Nadiem is a well-known Pakistani archaeologist and museologist. Besides remaining the curator and in charge of leading Pakistani museums, he also upgraded the prestigious Pakistan Institute of Archaeological Training and Research (PIATR) at Lahore. He has written nearly 20 books on history, art, culture and heritage of all Pakistani provinces.

The Government of Pakistan has always given a great importance to protect and preserve places of importance of any religion in Pakistan.

Due to the spiritual, cultural, religious and historical importance of Buddhist relics in Pakistan, the Government of Pakistan is making efforts to preserve Gandhara culture in Pakistan.

To promote awareness about Buddhist relics in Pakistan. the Pakistan Government under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism organises a Gandhara week in Pakistan every year where bhikkhus, clergy, scholars and worshippers are invited from all over the world to participate.

Besides the Gandhara week, last year the Government of Pakistan also invited the Most Ven. Mahanayakas from Sri Lanka for pilgrimage to Buddhist worship places in Pakistan.

They included the Most Udugama Sri Buddharakkitha Maha Thera, Mahanayaka of the Asgiriya Chapter, Asgiri Maha Viharaya, Kandy.

The Most Ven. Devuldena Gnanissara Maha Thera, Uttaritara Mahanayaka Thera of the Amarapura Nikaya, Vidyavijayuaramaya, Pagoda Road, Nugegoda, The Most Ven. Veveldeniye Medhalankara Maha Thera, Mahanayaka of the Ramanna Nikaya, Sri Sasanawardhana Pirivena, Mirigama and the Most Ven. Niyangoda Vijitasiri Deputy Mahanayaka of Malwatta Chapter, Kandy.

Last year the Pakistan High Commission also launched the Sinhala translation of famous book 'Gandhara Art in Pakistan' written by Dr. A. H. Dani and translated by Prof. Emeritus J. B. Dissanayake.

Pakistan will also host the World Buddhist Assembly in November.