- Restoration of the country’s fifth highest Stupa is in progress
- Deegawapiya sacred relics exposition for veneration is under consideration
Unlike futile attempts launched previously, we will see the former glory of Deegawapiya Stupa this time, pledged Defence Secretary Gen. Kamal Gunaratne (Retd) while addressing media at the Defence Ministry yesterday (Jan 13).
“We will complete the restoration process within three years”, he reiterated at the media brief held to convey the message of Deegawapiya donation account launching ceremony.
Further elaborating, he said “We have opened an account dedicated for Deegawapiya restoration project following the Parliament's approval and it will be launched officially on January 22, 2021 at the Sri Sambodhi Viharaya, Colombo in a ceremony presided over by Maha Sanga under the directives of the President and the Prime Minister”.
Gen. Gunaratne stated, the biggest challenge we encounter is the manufacturing of standard bricks, which is the core material for the Stupa erection, its transportation and the laying of 28000 bricks daily.
Depicting the need of 23 million standard bricks, 3977 cubes of river sand, 30167 bags of cement and other raw material, he said “We need financial aids for the provision of these resources”.
Therefore, print and electronic media networks were requested during the session to support the noble cause by disseminating this message to the general public.
He said plans are afoot to structure the Sacred Stone-Paved Precincts (Salapathala Maluwa), a full-fledged Pilgrimage’s Rest House (Vishrama Shalawa) and to set up a charming environment while planting saplings of Sal (shorea robusta) and ironwood.
Defence Secretary recalling the recently unearthed omniscient sacred relics, those deposited in a stone casket, during the excavation pledged, “All the relics associated with the sacred site would be placed in the Stupa once the project is completed.
Exposition of these sacred relics would also be held in Colombo and a few other cities for veneration of devotees once the coronavirus threat is mitigated in due course, he noted.
Stating that state funds would not be utilized for this, he said “This magnanimous effort requires approximately one billion rupees and therefore, funds would be generated through devotees, local and foreign donors and all those well-wishers”.
Let’s restore, protect and facilitate devotees to pay homage to this sacred Stupa and to preserve it for future generations to see the pride of motherland!