Sri Lankan pilgrims get nod to visit Mahabodhi temple

Colombo, July 11 (IANS) Sri Lankan authorities Thursday gave the green signal to pilgrims to visit the Mahabodhi temple in India which was bombed four days ago.

The Sri Lankan high commission in India said pilgrims could resume pilgrimage to the sacred shrine at Bodh Gaya in Bihar, reports Xinhua.

A foreign ministry statement said: "The Mahabodhi temple is again open to the public."

On July 7, a string of low intensity bombs exploded at the sacred shrine where Lord Buddha attained enlightenment and which is visited by millions of Buddhists from around the world.

The Sri Lankan statement said Indian authorities in consultation with the temple management had established a security system "that will provide for the safety and security of all pilgrims".

It said there has been no damage to the sacred Bodhi tree, the structure of the shrine and premises or to sacred objects as a result of the blasts, and no Sri Lankan was hurt.

Five people, including two Buddhist monks, were injured in the attack.

Following an advisory from the Indian government, security at all major Buddhist sites has been increased.

Around 150,000 Sri Lankans travel to the Bodh Gaya temple each year.


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