The honourable Speaker to Sri Lanka Chamal Rajapaksa received the sacred relics at the airport along with the High Commissioner of Pakistan Seema Ilahi Baloch and officials of the Pakistan High Commission.
Dr. Paul Bhatti, Advisor to the Prime Minister of Pakistan on Minorities Affairs and a high level team of archeology Department of Pakistan brought these relics to Sri Lanka.
The relics are valuable part of the archeological heritage of Pakistan and depicts the rich Buddhist history of Pakistan. The President of Sri Lanka Mahinda Rajapaksa inaugurated the sacred relics at Maligakanda Tample in Colombo for the public exposition.
The exhibition in Colombo will be displaying these high quality cultural assets from the Gandhara region of Pakistan and encompass four sacred artifacts/relics.
The artifacts/relics consist of the collection of Peshawar and Taxila Museum, of Pakistan
These exhibits include the sacred tooth relics of Lord Buddha, Kanishka Relic Casket from Shah-Ji-Ki-Dheri, stone reliquary in stupa shape and a golden Casket.
Buddhism left a monumental and rich legacy of art and architecture in Pakistan. Despite the vagaries of centuries, the Gandhara region preserved a lot of the heritage in craft and art. Much of this legacy is visible even today in Pakistan.
The Gandhara civilization was not only the centre of spiritual influence but also the cradle of the world famous Gandhara culture, art and learning.
It was from these centers that a unique art of sculpture originated which is known as Gandhara Art all over the world. Today the Gandhara sculptures occupy a prominent place in the museums of England, France, Germany, USA, Japan, Korea, China, India and Afghanistan, together with many private collections world over, as well as a vast collection in the museums of Pakistan.
The exhibition will further strengthen the already existing deep rooted cultural relations between the two friendly nations as it will mark 2600th Year of the attainment of Enlightenment of Lord Buddha.