New Delhi, Aug 10, 2020: India on Sunday (August 9) rejected the controversy over the birthplace of Gautam Buddha, saying that Foreign Minister S Jaishankar’s comment on the founder of Buddhism was on ’our shared Buddhist heritage’ and there is no doubt that Lord Buddha was born in Lumbini, Nepal.
The controversy started after Jaishankar on Saturday referred to Gautam Buddha as one of the "two greatest Indians" apart from Mahatma Gandhi. The Union Minister made the statement during Confederation of Indian Industry’s ‘India@75 Summit – Mission 2022’.
On Sunday, Nepal foreign ministry issued a statement that it was a “well-established and undeniable fact proven by historical and archaeological evidences that Gautam Buddha was born in Lumbini, Nepal”.
The statement issued on behalf of Nepal foreign ministry’s official spokesperson was in the context of the “recent statement made by the External Affairs Minister of India on Gautam Buddha”.
The statement also asserted that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had also mentioned during his speech to Nepal parliament in 2014 that ‘Nepal is the country where apostle of peace in the world, Buddha, was born’.
“It is true that Buddhism spread from Nepal to other parts of the world in the subsequent period. The matter remains beyond doubt and controversy and thus cannot be a subject of debate. The entire international community is aware of this,” he added.
India, however, reacted swiftly to end the controversy, for now.
“EAM’s remarks yesterday at the CII event referred to our shared Buddhist heritage. There is no doubt that Gautam Buddha was born in Lumbini, which is in Nepal,” said MEA spokesperson Anurag Srivastava.