6 Kartik, Butwal. A statue of Buddha weighing 1,800 kilograms worth Rs 2.5 billion will be placed at the Gaum Buddha International Airport in Bhairahawa.
The statue of Buddha, made of the precious metal ‘White Jade Stone’, was donated by the Malvin Group, a mining company based in Myanmar, to the Lumbini Garden Foundation in Spain.
The foundation has brought Bhairahawa from Kolkata port of India via Myanmar and Hong Kong.
The idol has been brought to Gautam Buddha Airport after circumambulating Bhairahawa Bazaar on Saturday.
The Lumbini Garden Foundation has handed over the Buddha statue to the Government of Nepal free of cost.
A statue of Buddha weighing 1,800 kilograms, 1.9 meters high and 60 centimeters wide is scheduled to be unveiled by President Bidyadevi Bhandari on November 30.
The foundation has sent such statues to 16 countries around the world. Ekraj Giri, general secretary of the foundation, said that neither the foundation nor the government of Nepal had made any cash investment as the statue was provided by a Myanmar miner.
The transportation cost of bringing Nepal from Myanmar is borne by the foundation. The idol was brought to Nepal from Myanmar after paying a transportation fee of 12,000 US dollars.
Giri said that the customs duty has been waived by the Nepal government. “It is hoped that the installation of the Buddha statue will have a positive impact on the tourism promotion of Lumbini,” said Bhishma Neupane, president of the Siddharthnagar Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Constituent Assembly member Istiaq Ahmed Khan, Deputy Chief of Siddharthnagar Municipality Uma Kafle, Chief of Ramgram Municipality Narendra Kumar Gupta, Chief Administrative Officer of Lumbini Cultural Municipality Bhupendra Pandey and others stressed on the need to bring the airport into operation soon.