Bodh Gaya: The Vault of Mahabodhi Temple at Bodhgaya would be coated with Gold plates weighing around 290kg. The Entire Gold Coating Project is being undertaken by Thailand Government with approval from Bihar Government and Archaeological Survey of India. The work started today upon arrival of Team from Thailand.
A team, led by former Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand General Pricha, arrived at Bodhgaya from Bangkok yesterday with 2.90 quintal gold for the purpose, sources in the Mahabodhi Temple Management Committee said.
The 40-member team came with the gold packed in 13 boxes. More than two dozen commandos from Thailand have also come to provide security for the gold, Management Committee member Arvind Kumar Singh said. King of Thailand Bhumibol Atulaya had taken a decision to coat the gumbad (vault) with gold last year and got approval of the Bihar government and temple management committee for the purpose.
After acquiring No Objection Certificate (NOC) from Archaeological Survey of India, work for golden coating of the ancient Buddhist temple has started. The entire work is being videographed. The ancient temple in Bodh Gaya where Lord Buddha had attained enlightenment is revered world over.
Mahabodhi Temple at Bodhgaya is one of the World Heritage Sites declared by UNESCO and dates back to 250 BC, when it was first constructed by Emperor Ashoka. The Present Structure dates back to 5th or 6th Century AD with periodic restoration in 11th Century AD and 19th Century AD.