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Dalai Lama to open three-day global Buddhist meet in Bihar

About 200 delegates from 35 countries, including Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Nepal, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Germany, Thailand and Bangladesh, as well as several Buddhist monks are anticipated to be a part of the conclave

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Buddhist
The 14th Dalai Lama.

Patna, March 17, 2017: The Fourteenth Dalai Lama of Tibet, Tenzin Gyatso, will inaugurate ‘The Relevance of Buddhism in the 21st Centruy: Perspectives and Global Challenges’, a three-day International Buddhist Conclave on Friday at Rajgir. This conclave is being termed as the first serious academic discourse on Buddhism by the organisers.

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The conclave will commence at Rajgir International Convention Centre (RICC), is jointly organised by Nava Nalanda Mahavihara (NNM) — a deemed university and Union Ministry of Culture.

About 200 delegates from 35 countries, including Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Nepal, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Germany, Thailand and Bangladesh, as well as several Buddhist monks are anticipated to be a part of the conclave.

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“This is for the first time in India that a Buddhist conclave is being organised on such a huge scale. Several technical sessions will be held where the participants will discuss various aspects of Buddhism and the teaching of Lord Buddha,” stated NNM media in-charge Srikant Singh.

Singh said the Buddhist scripture, The Tripitaka, has been reprinted in Devanagri script after a gap of around five decades, and will be released by the Dalai Lama. The Triptika is a 41 volume text containing the words of Lord Buddha in Pali.

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President Pranab Mukherjee will also attend the Buddhist conclave.

– prepared by Sabhyata Badhwar of NewsGram. Twitter: @SabbyDarkhorse

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India Struggles with Encephalitis Outbreak in Eastern State of Bihar, One of Its Poorest Regions

In 2014, an outbreak of encephalitis killed 350 children in Muzaffarpur

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India, Encephalitis Outbreak, Bihar
Children showing symptoms of encephalitis undergo treatment at Sri Krishna Medical College Hospital in Muzaffarpur, Bihar state, India, June 18, 2019. VOA

At least 152 children have died in an encephalitis outbreak during the month of June in India’s eastern state of Bihar, according to local health authorities. Following a petition, India’s supreme court ordered an investigation into the epidemic.

Acute encephalitis syndrome, sometimes referred to as ‘brain fever’, has claimed lives in 20 of Bihar’s 38 districts.  In particular, the disease has gripped the Muzaffarpur district of Bihar, reaching epidemic proportions in a region already stricken with poverty and poor child health.

In 2014, an outbreak of encephalitis killed 350 children in Muzaffarpur.

A petition filed to India’s supreme court sought to end the current epidemic, accusing local and regional governments of being negligent in their response.

India, Encephalitis Outbreak, Bihar

At least 152 children have died in an encephalitis outbreak during the month of June in India’s eastern state of Bihar. Pixabay

“[Encephalitis] is completely curable and lives of young children are being lost due to the inaction of state machinery,” the petition read.

“Most of the deaths are occurring due to lack of medical facilities in the area of outbreak,” it continued.

In response to the petition, Indian supreme court justice Sanjiv Khanna said “We issue notice to the Bihar government seeking a detailed response.”

State and national officials must respond within seven days on health conditions, according to India’s top court.

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India’s health ministry affirmed its earlier promise to open a children’s ward in the district and monitor the epidemic, as state health official face sharp criticism for what has been seen as indifference and negligent behavior.

India’s health minister Harsh Varadhan insisted that the Indian government was providing “all possible support” to combat the epidemic.

Since June 1, more than 700 cases of the disease have been recorded, though there are signs that the disease has been slowing, with no new deaths reported on Monday. (VOA)