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Pratibha Patil to inaugurate Buddha Vihara in Gulbarga

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Congress leaders N. Dharam Singh, M. Mallikarjun Kharge and M.P. Prakash with Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa when they called on him in Bangalore on Sunday.
Congress leaders N. Dharam Singh, M. Mallikarjun Kharge and M.P. Prakash with Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa when they called on him in Bangalore on Sunday.

Special Correspondent

It has been built by Siddhartha Vihara Trust at a cost of Rs. 4 crore

The Buddha statue is the largest in south India

Government urged not to shift college from Hadagali

Bangalore: President Pratibha Patil will inaugurate the Buddha Vihara, built by the Siddhartha Vihara Trust at a cost of around Rs. 4 crore on the outskirts of Gulbarga on January 7.

Tibetan Buddhist religious leader the Dalai Lama would inaugurate an all-religion conference on January 19 and launch the consecration ceremonies of the 18-ft-tall bronze statue of Buddha according to Buddhist rituals. The Buddha statue, the largest in south India, has already been installed.

A Buddhist monastery, a prayer hall and a meditation centre would be opened at the vihara. Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly M. Mallikarjun Kharge, who is also chairman of the trust, former Chief Minister N. Dharam Singh and former Deputy Chief Minister M.P. Prakash met Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa and requested him to attend the functions.

Mr. Kharge told presspersons here on Sunday that Mr. Yeddyurappa had agreed to participate in the inaugural function. He said the Congress leaders urged the Chief Minister that the engineering college at Hadagali in Bellary district not be shifted to Bellary city, just because the student strength there was poor. A decision to shift the college should be taken after studying the situation for two years, the Chief Minister said.

Mr. Yeddyurappa said that basic facilities such as roads, drinking water and lights in the area where the Buddha Vihara had been built would be provided and gave a direction in this regard to the Deputy Commissioner.

The Chief Minister said the Government had directed the police to keep a watch on anti-social elements during the festive season. He said that miscreants might try to create confusion and spread rumours fuelling anxiety among the people during the period.

When his attention was drawn to the criticism of some Congress leaders at the Kittur festival that more funds were not released for it, he said it was better if they recalled how much funds their party sanctioned whey it was in power. His Government, Mr. Yeddyurappa said was encouraging people to celebrate Kanaka Jayanti also.

Mr. Kharge requested the media not to give it any colour, because the Congress leaders made such remarks on the spur of the moment.

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