President Sirisena offered the first pooja for the renovated Abhayagiriya Stupa and declared open the stupa for devotees.
Located at the northern inner city of the Anuradhapura ancient town, the Abayagiriya Stupa, which is 345 feet in height and 1,355 feet around was being renovated for the last 18 years by the Central Cultural Fund.
The restoration work, initiated as a UNESCO project in 1997 had cost Rs. 519.5 million. The funds for the project were gathered from the earning of the Central Cultural Fund (CCF) and from the donations of both local and international devotees as well as international organizations.
Addressing the gathering the President said Buddhist philosophy is accepted not only by the Buddhists but also by all righteous people throughout the world due to the uniqueness and supremacy of this philosophy. Buddhist philosophy is the only way to create honest people and a spiritual society, he said.
“While the developed countries speak about their scientific and technological developments, we have a proud heritage going back to centuries. Based on this heritage we should build the sound future for our future generation” the President said.
The President remembered all the forefathers including King Walagamba who built the world renowned Stupa.
He also thanked the philanthropists and officials who contributed to conserve this valuable heritage of mankind.
The Prime Minister sending a message for the occasion said the Abayagiriya tradition led to the thorough study of the basic principles of Theravada and Mahayana and to derive the best out of it. Sri Lanka is significant as it had education centers of three traditions of Buddhist philosophy, he said.
Chief Incumbent of Atamasthana Most Ven. Pallegama Sirinivasa Thero, Chief Incumbent of Abayagiriya Temple Ven. Kallanchiye Ratanasiri Thero, Several Ministers, North Central Province Chief Minister, Director General of Archaeology. Dr. Senarath Dissanayake, Director General of Central Cultural Fund Prof. Prishantha Gunawardena, and former Director General of Archaeology Dr. Roland Silva were among those participated in this event.