Patna's Buddha idols being sent to Singapore for an exhibition

ANI, July 28, 2007

Patna, India -- Some selected idols of Lord Buddha dating back to the 8th century AD are being sent from the Patna Museum to Singapore for an international exhibition.

Sixteen idols of Lord Buddha are to be displayed at the Ancient Civilisation Museum for an exhibition on "Buddhist Philosophy and Buddhist Art", in October this year, said Sahdev Kumar, the museum's director.

"The idols are primarily from Nalanda and Kurkihar and they hold utmost importance, as Lord Buddha spent most of his time there only," he added.

Amidst all the excitement, the safe transport of these idols is a cause ofoncern to the authorities. The State administration has taken care to ensure the safe return of the idols.

"All these idols are invaluable," said Janardan Singh Sigriwal, Bihar'sulture and Youth Affairs Minister.

The event has excited locals and visitors, who see this as an opportunity for their State to make a mark on the international Buddhist circuit.

"I am delighted to know that these idols are being sent for an international exhibition in Singapore. It is a good thing," said Prabhat Sharma, a visitor.

The idols were found during an excavation at Nalanda and Kurkihar.

Buddhism is an important religion in Singapore with almost 61 percent of its nationals following it.

These idols were sculpted during the Pala Dynasty. The bronze figurines depicting Buddha in various postures were selected by representatives of Singapore Museum.