|• Type||Nagar Panchayat|
|• District Magistrate||Mr. Shambhu Kumar|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
Kushinagar, Kusinagar or Kusinara is a town and a Nagar Panchayat in the Kushinagar district of the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh located around NH-28, and is 52 km east of Gorakhpur city. It is an important Buddhist pilgrimage site, where Buddhists believe Gautama Buddha attained Parinirvana after his death. Outside India, it is an International Buddhist Pilgrimage Centre. The followers of Buddhism, especially from Asian Countries, wish to visit this place at least once in their lifetime.
According to one theory, Kushwati was capital of Kosala Kingdom and according to Ramayana it was built by King Kush, son of Rama, protagonist of the epic Ramayana. While according to Buddhist tradition Kushawati was named prior to the king Kush. The naming of Kushwati is believed to be due to abundance of Kush grass found in this region.
As of 2011 India census, Kushinagar had a population of 22,214, with 3462 households. Males constitute 52% (11,502 Men) of the population and females 48% (10,712 Women). Kushinagar has an average literacy rate of 78.43%, higher than the national average of 74%, male literacy is 85%, and female literacy is 72%. In Kushinagar, 11% of the population is under 10 years of age. Schedule Caste (SC) constitutes 5.03% while Schedule Tribe (ST) were 2.39% of total population in Kushinagar Nagar Panchayat.
The present Kushinagar is identified with Kushawati( in pre-Buddha period ) and Kushinara (in Buddha period). Kushinara was the capital of Mallas which was one of the sixteen mahajanpads of the 6th Century B.C. Since then, it remained an integral part of the erstwhile empires of Maurya, Shunga, Kushana, Gupta and Harsha dynasties.
In medieval period, Kushinagar had passed under the suzerainty of Kultury Kings. Kushinara continued to be a living city till the 12th Century A.D. and was thereafter lost into oblivion. Padrauna is believed to be ruled over by a Rajput adventurer, Madan Singh in the 15th century A.D.
However, modern Kushinagar came into prominence in the 19th Century with archeological excavations carried out by Alexander Cunningham, the first Archeological Surveyor of India and later followed by C.L. Carlleyle who exposed the main stupa and also discovered a 6.10 meters long statue of reclining Buddha, in 1876 A.D. Chandra Swami, a Burmeses Monk, came to India in 1903 and made "Mahaparinirvana Temple" into a living shrine.
Kushinagar is situated at 53 km east from Gorakhpur on the National Highway -28, lies between latitude 26° 45´ N and 83° 24´ E. Gorakhpur is the main railway terminus for Kushinagar while air strip of U.P. Civil Aviation is available in Kasia, 5 km. from Kushinagar.
The reclining Nirvana statue of the Buddha is inside the Parinirvana Stupa. Statue is 6.10 metres long and is made of monolith red - sand stone. It represents the "Dying Buddha" reclining on his right side with his face towards the west. It is placed on a large brick-pedestal with stone-posts at the corners.
Nirvana Chaitya (Main Stupa)
Nirvana Chaitya is located just behind the Main Parinirvana Temple. It was excavated by Carlleyle in the year 1876. During excavations, a copper-plate was found, which contained the text of the "Nidana-Sutra" which concluded the statement that plate had been deposited in the "Nirvana-Chaitya" by one Haribala, who also installed the great Nirvana Statue of Buddha in the temple front.
Ramabhar Stupa Ramabhar Stupa, also called a Mukutbandhan-Chaitya, is the cremation -place of Buddha. This Site is 1.5 km east of the main Nirvana Temple on the Kushinagar-Deoria road.
Matha Kuar Shrine A Colossal statue of Lord Buddha is installed, which is carved out of one block which represents Buddha seated under the "Bodhi Tree" in a pose known as " Bhumi Sparsh Mudra " (Earth touching attitude). The inscription at the base of statue is datable to the 10th or 11th Century A.D.
Other major places
- Indo-Japan-Sri Lanka Temple: Indo-Japan-Sri Lanka temple is a marvel of Buddhist architectural grandeur of modern times.
- Wat Thai Temple: It is a huge complex built in a typical Thai-Buddhist architectural fashion.
- Ruins & Brick Structures: These are located around the main Nirvana Temple and Main Stupa. These are the remains of various monasteries of different sizes constructed from time to time in the ancient period.
- Several museums, meditation parks and several other temples based on architecture of various eastern countries.
Government and politics
Kushinagar comes under Kushi Nagar (Lok Sabha constituency) for Indian general elections. Current Member of Parliament from this constituency is Rajesh Pandey of Bharatiya Janata Party who defeated R. P. N. Singh of Indian National Congress in Indian general elections, 2014.
Following are some initiatives by district administration:
1. The Buddha Relic Distribution Site has been added as a new pilgrim spot on the Kushinagar Tourist Map. The site is located in Village Anirudhawa, at a walking distance from the main Mahaparinirvana Temple and 50 meters, right behind the Thai Temple.
2. The Buddha Ghat was constructed on the banks of the river Hiranyavati—Buddha was cremated on its bank—right behind the Ramabhar Stupa. It is said that Buddha's body wa's given the last bath in this river. 3. Work also started on The Buddha's Last Meal site at Pavanagar, village Satheeau, Fazilnagar, about 20 km before Kushinagar while approaching from Bihar. This is the spot where as per the Mahaparinirvana Suttra, Chunda the goldsmith offered Sukar-maddava, eating which the lord became sick.
4. Work also started at the Kakuttha River, Buddha took his last bath in this river. This is on the Main National Highway 28 at a bridge while approaching Kushinagar from Bihar after the Buddha's Last Meal site.
5. Pampor Stupa. A new Buddhist site was excavated at Village Pampor. The excavation revealed the remains of an old Buddhist Stupa. Rahul Sanskrityan the legendary Buddhist scholar from India is said to have identified Pampor as the famed Pava Kingdom of ancient India. Some decorated bricks were discovered from the site which has been handed over to the local museum at Kushinagar.
Notable People From Kushinagar
- Sachchidananda Vatsyayan 'Agyeya' (सच्चिदानंद हीरानंद वात्स्यायन 'अज्ञेय') was a notable Indian Hindi Writer.
- Ram Nagina Mishra was a former Loksabha M.P. from Kushinagar.
- Baleshwar Yadav was a former Loksabha M.P. from Kushinagar.
- Rajesh Pandey is a member of 16th Loksabha from Kushi Nagar (Lok Sabha constituency) and also served as a Member of Legislative Council in Uttar Pradesh.
- R. P. N. Singh was former member of parliament from Kushi Nagar (Lok Sabha constituency) from Indian National Congress. He also served as Minister of State for Road and Transport, Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas in Dr. Manmohan Singh Cabinet. He was also member of many parliamentary committees.
Kushinagar has made a lot of progress in education in recent times. Since last decade - dozens of private and governmental institutes have been launched at this little town. Here is a list of all educational institutes at Kushinagar:
- Buddha Post Graduate College, Kushinagar
- Buddha Intermediate College, Kushinagar
- Mooti Chand Polytechnic Institute, Kurmauta, Kushinagar
- Buddha Central Academy, Kasia, Kushinagar
- Saraswati Shishu Mandir, Kasia, Kushinagar
- Rahul Public School, Kushinagar
- Rahul Shishu Shiksha Niketan, Kushinagar
- Swargiya Foolmati Devi Kushinagar Public School, Kushinagar
- Linh-Son Buddhist Intermediate College, Kushinagar
- Gyanlok College for Government Services, Kushinagar
- Nav Jeevan Mission School, Kasia, Kushinagar
- St. Xavier's High School, kasia,kushinagar
- Bright children's academy,kasia,kushinagar
- St. joseph's school,salemgarh,kushinagar
- Gyan bhoomi international school,NH-28,kushinagar
- St. thereses school,padrauna, kushinagar
- Malati Pandey Girls Inter College,Bhaluhi Madari Patti,Kasia,Kushinagar
- Holy Mother's English School, Gaura Khas, Kasaia Road
Medical institutions and hospitals in Kushinagar
There are two governmental and several private hospitals and clinics available at Kushinagar and Kasia. The popular ones are:
- Governmental Aayurvedic Hospital, Mahaparinirvana Temple road
- Buddha National Hospital, NH 28
- Government Hospital, Kasia
- al-Shifa Medical College, Kasia
- Vartika Medical Center, Kasia
- Hitashi hospital,gorakhpur road,kasia
- Sanjeevni Hospital,sapha road,kasia
- Jeevan jyoti chikitsalaya,kasia
- Hansraj memorial hospital,NH-28
- Holy Mother's English School, Kasaia Road, Gaura Khas
- "Kushinagar City Census". census2011. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- W. Owen Cole, Peggy Morgan Six Religions in the Twenty-First Century 2000 - Page 204 "Kushinara. Here, near modern Kasia in Uttar Pradesh, is the site of the Buddha's death. A temple commemorates the Buddha's final ..."
- "Kushinagar". official government website of Kushinagar. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- Census of India: Population Finder, http://censusindia.gov.in/PopulationFinder/View_Village_Population.aspx?pcaid=1249&category=N.P.
- "Kushinagar History". kushinagar.nic.in. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
- "Kushinagar geography". kushinagr.nic.in. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
- "Kushinagar". onefivenine. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
- "Places in Kushinagar". kushinager.nic.in. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- "Kushinagar Loksabha". elections. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
- "Kushinagar Assembly". empowering india. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
- A Literary History of Deoria & Kushinagar by M.A. Lari Azad (USM 1998 Ghaziabad).
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