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28th April 2006

50 new stamps for Buddha Jayanthi

Fifty new stamps will be released to mark the 2550th 'Buddha Jayanthi' ceremony which falls in May, Post, Telecommunications and Rural Development Minister D.M. Jayaratne told the Daily News yesterday.

This is the first time that such a large number of stamps is being issued simultaneously in the 200 years of postal history. These pictures depicting the importance of Buddhism and Buddhist philosophy in our society, he added.

The 50 stamps valued at Rs.2.50, Rs.4.50, Rs. 5.00, Rs. 10.00 and Rs.17.00 will depict the ancient shrines that play a major role in Sri Lankan Buddhist culture and glory, he said.

Each stamp has two main parts - a picture of an important event in the Buddha's life and a sketch drawing of the relevant shrine.

The sketches of these stamps were done by renowned artists who had visited the shrines in Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa, Matale, Kataragama and Jaffna and other areas of historical importance.

Shrines of fame such as 'Thiwanka Pilima Geya','Hindagala Rajamaha Temple', 'Jethawanaramaya', 'Nagadeepa Cetiya', 'Kirivehera', 'Sithulpawwa' and 'Alu Viharaya,' adorn these stamps, Minister Jayaratne said.

Click to enlarge

Events in Buddha's life were drawn under various categories like Jathaka stories, special occasions in Buddha's life before and after attaining Buddhahood, Buddhist history of Sri Lanka, the impact of Buddhism on the people and many other important aspects in Buddhist culture.

Minister Jayaratne said his Ministry carried out the programme in collaboration with the Archaeological Department and Ministry of Cultural Affairs. The stamps are being printed, sources said.

by Lakmini Rodrigo - Daily News

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