In 2012 the Buddha Festival will be held from January 26 to 29 at Deekshabhoomi in Nagpur. The festival is a showcase of Buddhist culture, heritage and philosophy. This year along with various cultural programmes depicting the teachings and life of Lord Buddha, the audience will also be entertained by a three hour live rock music band formed by a group of youngsters called Band Dhamma Wings.
The Buddha Festival is being organized by Nagpur Buddhist Centre, a unit of Triratna Boudha Mahasanga and the theme this year is based around the events that took place during the life of Lord Buddha. The presence of Lord Buddha will be in the form of a 50 feet high structure of Lord Buddha, similar to the statue of Lord Buddha in Bodhgaya in Bihar. The design and structure of the statue has been conceptualized by artist and stage designer Digambar Bagde.
Artists and performers from Mumbai, Lucknow and Ujjain will also be participating in the various cultural programmes during the four day festival. Scintallating collection of paintings and sculptures of Buddha by Dilip Wankhede will be exhibited.
The chief coordinator of the fest, Ritayush said, "The teachings of Buddha are very relevant in the contemporary age, hence this festival is an attempt to propagate peace, harmony and compassion in the society. Also attempt is being made to promote principles of Buddha through rock singing, as there was a very good response from youth in attending the gala in 2011."
The various programmes which will be part of Buddha Festival 2012 include classical dance and drama on the life of Buddha, rangoli and sculpture competition for various age groups, meditation, jugalbandi and many others.
Many low caste people, especially the Dalits across India have embraced Buddhism after it was adopted by their leader Dr. Babasahed Ambedkar, Father of the Indian Constitution in 1956. Lakhs of followers of Dr Ambedkar from different states in the country and abroad gather at the Deeksha Bhoomi in Nagpur every year to celebrate the 'Dhamma Chakra Pravartan Din', the day when Dr. Babasaheb embraced Buddhism.