India to repair Myanmar's most-revered shrine

The Times of India, June 1, 2008

NEW DELHI, India -- India will repair Myanmar’s famous Shwedagon Pagoda, or Golden Pagoda, which was damaged by cyclone Nargis on May 3. This offer was made during Sunday’s pledging conference where around 52 countries promised rehabilitation and reconstruction aid to Myanmar.

India’s offer is a diplomatic coup of sorts. Shwedagon is Myanmar’s most revered Buddhist shrine and is believed to house eight hairs of Gautam Buddha. For India, it’s an unbeatable way of building up confidence with Myanmar, but it’s also a way of claiming the diplomatic advantage on Buddhism.

For the past couple of weeks, as two of its neighbours, Myanmar and China, battled unprecedented natural disasters, India has been reaping massive diplomatic benefits by being among the first off the block in delivering aid and assistance.

In Myanmar for instance, quite apart from all the aircraft and ships, India’s most valuable contribution has been the 47 Army doctors who are tending to about 1,500 sick people a day. India is also going to repair the Myanmarese power system that has taken a hit. India is taking advantage of the natural disaster in Myanmar to build deeper ties — ultimately it is also tied to balancing out China’s influence in Myanmar. It is also helping Myanmar re-engage with the outside world.

Related story:
Myanmar's Shwedagon Temple Damaged

The Buddhist Channel - Donate to Support Our Work

An Appeal

In deep gratitude for your support! We are half way to meeting our target (US$ 10,400 of US$ 18,000 already achieved)!

The Buddhist Channel is a dedicated group of "mindful communication practitioners" striving to make a positive impact on the Buddhist community. We deeply believe in the power of mindful journalism and are reaching out to you with a heartfelt request for your support. Your donation, no matter the size, can make a tangible difference in the lives of countless Buddhist monastics, local communities and other dedicated engaged workers. With your help, we make their stories known, and thereby opening up avenues for them to obtain sustainable support for their work.

Please indicate whether your support will be a donation or a loan. We will get back to you via email. We thank you in advance for providing us financial relieve. May the Buddha Dharma ever be your guide and protector.

Note: To date, we have received the following:

US$ 900 from Esa Myllykoski (donation)
US$ 9,500 from Lance Edwards/Kau Soo Kin (loan)

We express our deep gratitude for the support and generosity.

If you have any enquiries, please write to: