Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Thursday arrived in Bodh Gaya, as he resumed his annual tour of the Buddhist tourist town after a two-year gap due to the COVID 19 pandemic. He was accorded a warm welcome at the Gaya International Airport by officials led by District Magistrate Thyagarajan and Senior Superintendent of Police Harpreet Kaur, besides a sizeable number of followers.
According to Arvind Singh, a member of the Bodh Gaya Temple Management Trust, a large number of people stood on either side of the road to catch a glimpse of the Dalai Lama, as he drove to the Tibetan monastery at Bodh Gaya. The Dalai Lama is scheduled to offer discourses at the Kalchakra Maidan from December 29 to 31.
Tight security arrangements are in place in view of the the Nobel laureate’s stay, the site of whose discourse was rocked by a low-intensity blast in January 2018. Meanwhile, the health department has spruced up enforcement of Covid protocols in Bodh Gaya, where followers from across the world are expected to converge to attend the discourses. According to Dr Ranjan Singh, the medical officer in charge of Gaya district, health personnel have been deployed for Covid testing of visitors from abroad, and people are being advised to wear masks in public places.