Kushinagar (also known as Kusinagar, Kusinara, Kasia and Kasia Bazar)
is a pilgrimage town and a
Notified Area Council in the Kushinagar
district of the Indian state of
Uttar Pradesh located around NH-28,
and is 52 km east of
Gorakhpur city. The name of "Kasia Bazaar"
was changed to "Kushinagar" and then "Kasia Bazaar" became a
municipality with the official name "Kushinagar".
It is an important
Buddhist pilgrimage site, where Buddhists believe
Gautama Buddha attained
Parinirvana after his death. It is an
Buddhist pilgrimage centre. The followers of Buddhism,
especially from Asian countries, wish to visit this place at least
once in their lifetime.
4 Location of Gautama Buddha's death and parinirvana
7 Government and politics
9 Notable people
12 Further reading
13 See also
14 External links
According to one theory, Kushwati was the capital of Kosala Kingdom
and according to
Ramayana it was built by King Kush, son of Rama,
protagonist of the epic Ramayana. While according to Buddhist
tradition Kushawati was named prior to the king Kush. The naming of
Kushwati is believed to be due to abundance of Kush grass found in
As of 2011
Kushinagar had a population of 22,214,
with 3462 households. Males constitute 52% (11,502 Men) of the
population and females 48% (10,712 Women).
Kushinagar has an average
literacy rate of 78.43%, higher than the national average of 74%, male
literacy is 85%, and female literacy is 72%. In Kushinagar, 11% of the
population is under 10 years of age. Schedule Caste (SC) constitutes
5.03% while Schedule Tribe (ST) were 2.39% of total population in
Kushinagar Nagar Panchayat.
Kushinagar is identified with Kusavati (in the pre-Buddha
period) and Kushinara (in the post-Buddha period). Kushinara was the
capital of Mallas which was one of the sixteen mahajanpads of the 6th
Century BCE. Since then, it remained an integral part of the erstwhile
empires of Maurya, Shunga, Kushana, Gupta, Harsha, and Pala dynasties.
In the medieval period,
Kushinagar had passed under the suzerainty of
Kultury Kings. Kushinara continued to be a living city till the 12th
century CE and was thereafter lost into oblivion.
Padrauna is believed
to be ruled over by a Rajput adventurer, Madan Singh, in the 15th
Conjectural reconstruction of the main gate of Kusinagara circa 500
BCE adapted from this relief at Sanchi
Kushinagar came into prominence in the 19th century
with archeological excavations carried out by Alexander Cunningham,
the first Archeological Surveyor of
India and later followed by C.L.
Carlleyle who exposed the main stupa and also discovered a 6.10 meters
long statue of reclining Buddha in 1876. Excavations continued in the
early twentieth century under J. Ph. Vogel. He conducted
archaeological campaigns in 1904-5, 1905-6 and 1906-7, uncovering a
Chandra Swami, a Burmese monk, came to
India in 1903 and made
Mahaparinirvana Temple into a living shrine.
Kushinagar remained the part of district Deoria.
On 13 May 1994, it came into being as a new district of Uttar
Location of Gautama Buddha's death and parinirvana
Buddha's cremation stupa, Kushinagar
In 1896, Waddell suggested that the site of the death and parinirvana
Gautama Buddha was in the region of Rampurva. However, according
to Maha-parinirvana Sutta, the Buddha made his journey to Kushinagar,
died there and wherein he was cremated. Modern scholarship,
based on archaeological evidence, believes that the Buddha died in
Kushinagar, close to the modern Kasia (Uttar Pradesh).
Ashoka built a stupa and pilgrimage site to mark Buddha's parinirvana
in Kushinagara. The Hindu kings of Gupta dynasty period (4th to
7th century CE) helped greatly enlarge the
Nirvana stupa and
Kushinagar site, building a temple with reclining Buddha. This
site was abandoned by
Buddhist monks around 1200 CE, who fled to
escape the invading Muslim army, after which the site decayed over the
Islamic rule in
India that followed. The British archaeologist
Alexander Cunningham rediscovered Kushinagara in the late 19th
century, and his colleague A. C. L. Carlleyle unearthed the
1,500-year-old Buddha image. The site has since then
become an important pilgrimage site for Buddhists.
Archaeological evidence from the 3rd century BCE suggests that the
Kushinagara site was an ancient pilgrimage site.
Kushinagar is a nagar palika situated at 53 km east from
Gorakhpur on the National Highway-28, lying between latitude 26°45´N
Gorakhpur is the main railway terminus for Kushinagar
while air strip of UP Civil Aviation is situated in Kasia, 5 km
away from Kushinagar, currently being developed as an International
Uttar Pradesh Government and Government of India.
Parinirvana Temple with the
Parinirvana Stupa, Kushinagar
Nirvana statue of the Buddha is inside the Parinirvana
Stupa. The statue is 6.10 metres long and is made of monolith red-sand
stone. It represents the "Dying Buddha" reclining on his right side
with his face towards the west. It is placed on a large brick pedestal
with stone-posts at the corners.
Nirvana Chaitya (Main Stupa)
Nirvana Chaitya is located just behind the Main
Parinirvana Temple. It
was excavated by Carlleyle in the year 1876. During excavations, a
copper plate was found, which contained the text of the "Nidana-Sutra"
which concluded the statement that plate had been deposited in the
Nirvana-Chaitya by one Haribala, who also installed the great Nirvana
Statue of Buddha in the temple front.
Stupa Ramabhar Stupa, also called a Mukutbandhan-Chaitya, is
the cremation place of Buddha. This site is 1.5 km east of the
Nirvana Temple on the Kushinagar-Deoria road.
Matha Kuar Shrine A colossal statue of Lord Buddha is installed, which
is carved out of one block which represents Buddha seated under the
Bodhi Tree" in a pose known as "Bhumi Sparsh Mudra" (Earth touching
attitude). The inscription at the base of statue is datable to the
10th or 11th century A.D.
Other major places
Indo-Japan-Sri Lanka Temple: Indo-Japan-Sri Lanka temple is a marvel
Buddhist architectural grandeur of modern times.
Wat Thai Temple: It is a huge complex built in a typical Thai-Buddhist
Ruins and brick structures: These are located around the main Nirvana
Temple and Main Stupa. These are the remains of various monasteries of
different sizes constructed from time to time in the ancient
Several museums, meditation parks and several other temples based on
architecture of various eastern countries.
The Government of
Uttar Pradesh has proposed the Kushinagar-Sarnath
Buddha Expressway to connect
Buddhist pilgrimage towns. The expressway
will be around 200 km long and will reduce the distance from both
town from Seven hours to one and half hours.
Government and politics
Stupa ruins in Kushinagar.
Kushinagar comes under
Kushi Nagar (Lok Sabha constituency) for Indian
general elections. Current Member of Parliament from this constituency
Rajesh Pandey of
Bharatiya Janata Party
Bharatiya Janata Party who defeated R. P. N. Singh
Indian National Congress
Indian National Congress in Indian general elections, 2014.
The current Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) from Kushinagar
Assembly constituency is
Rajnikant Mani Tripathi of Bharatiya Janata
Kushinagar has made a lot of progress in education in recent times. In
the last decade,[when?] dozens of private and government institutes
have been established at this little town. Here is a list of all
educational institutes in Kushinagar:
Buddha Post Graduate College, Kushinagar
Buddha Intermediate College, Kushinagar
Government Polytechnic, Mujahana, Kushinagar
Mooti Chand Polytechnic Institute, Kurmauta, Kushinagar
Saraswati Shishu Mandir, Kasia, Kushinagar
Rahul Shishu Shiksha Niketan, Kushinagar
Buddha Central Academy, Kasia, Kushinagar
VIEIT Computer Education, NH-28,
Gorakhpur Road, Kushinagar
Rahul Public School, Kushinagar
Swargiya Foolmati Devi
Kushinagar Public School, Kushinagar
Buddhist Intermediate College, Kushinagar
Gyanlok College for Government Services, Kushinagar
Nav Jeevan Mission School, Kasia, Kushinagar
St. Xavier's High School, Kasia, Kushinagar
Bright Children's Academy, Kasia, Kushinagar
St. Joseph's School, Salemgarh, Kushinagar
Gyan Bhoomi International School, NH-28, Kushinagar
St. Thereses School, Padrauna, Kushinagar
Malati Pandey Girls Inter College, Bhaluhi Madari Patti, Kasia,
Holy Mother's English School, Gaura Khas, Kasaia Road
Green Land Public School, Kasia
Quantom Public School, Kasia
S.D. Public School, Babhnauli
Nirankari Inter College, Kasia
Holy Mother's English School, Kasaia Road, Gaura Khas
SP Montessori, Seorahi, Kushinagar
Medical institutions and hospitals
There are two government and several private hospitals and clinics
Kushinagar and Kasia. Noted ones are:
Government Hospital, Kasia
Governmental Aayurvedic Hospital,
Mahaparinirvana Temple road
Buddha National Hospital, NH 28
Qazi Nursing Home, Kasia
Al-Shifa Medical College, Kasia
Vartika Medical Center, Kasia
Gorakhpur Road, Kasia
Sanjeevni Hospital, Sapha Road, Kasia
Jeevan Jyoti Chikitsalaya, Kasia
Hansraj Memorial Hospital, NH-28
Janta Hospital, Kasia
Sachchidananda Vatsyayan 'Agyeya' (सच्चिदानंद
Ram Nagina Mishra, former Lok Sabha MP
Baleshwar Yadav, former Lok Sabha MP
Rajesh Pandey, member of 16th Lok Sabha, also served as a Member of
Legislative Council in Uttar Pradesh
R. P. N. Singh, former member of parliament from Indian National
Congress, also served as Minister of State for Road and Transport,
Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas in the cabinet of
former Prime minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh
Mahasukhamdada Chin Thargyi
Pagoda (Burmese Temple)
Wat Thai Temple
Buddha relic distribution site
Buddha's body was kept at this location for one week, after he
Gautam Buddh's statue in Parinirvana, at the
Stupa was built over a portion of the Buddha's ashes on the
spot where he was cremated by the ancient Malla people.
Relief on base of
Stone plaque pointing towards Buddha relic distribution site
^ W. Owen Cole, Peggy Morgan Six Religions in the Twenty-First Century
2000 - Page 204 "Kushinara. Here, near modern Kasia in Uttar Pradesh,
is the site of the Buddha's death. A temple commemorates the Buddha's
^ a b "Kushinagar". official government website of Kushinagar.
Retrieved 17 July 2015.
Census of India: Population Finder,
^ Vogel J Ph. (1950). "Some
Buddhist Monasteries in Ancient India".
Journal of the Ceylon branch of the Royal Asiatic Society. 1:
Kushinagar History". kushinagar.nic.in. Retrieved 18 July
^ "A Tibetan Guide-book to the Lost Sites of the Buddha's Birth and
Death", L. A. Waddell. Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, 1896,
^ a b c Lars Fogelin (2015). An Archaeological History of Indian
Buddhism. Oxford University Press. pp. 23–24.
^ John Guy (1991). "The Mahabodhi temple". The Burlington Magazine.
133 (1059): 356–357. JSTOR 884751.
^ United Nations (2003). Promotion of
Buddhist Tourism Circuits in
Selected Asian Countries. United Nations Publications.
pp. 23–24. ISBN 978-92-1-120386-8.
^ Kevin Trainor (2004). Buddhism: The Illustrated Guide. Oxford
University Press. p. 41. ISBN 978-0-19-517398-7.
^ Elizabeth Lyons; Heather Peters; Chʻeng-mei Chang (1985). Buddhism:
History and Diversity of a Great Tradition. University of Pennsylvania
Museum of Archaeology. p. 17. ISBN 978-0-934718-76-9. ;
Fred S. Kleiner (2009). Gardner's Art through the Ages: Non-Western
Perspectives. Cengage. pp. 13, 31. ISBN 0-495-57367-1.
^ Huntington, John C (1986), "Sowing the Seeds of the Lotus" (PDF),
Orientations, September 1986: 47, archived from the original (PDF) on
Nov 28, 2014
^ Akira Hirakawa; Paul Groner (1993). A History of Indian Buddhism:
From Śākyamuni to Early Mahāyāna. Motilal Banarsidass.
p. 101. ISBN 978-81-208-0955-0.
^ Gina Barns (1995). "An Introduction to
Buddhist Archaeology". World
Archaeology. 27 (2): 166–168.
^ a b Robert Stoddard (2010). "The Geography of
Buddhist Pilgrimage in
Asia". Pilgrimage and
Buddhist Art. Yale University Press. 178:
^ Richard H. Robinson; Sandra Ann Wawrytko; Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu
Buddhist Religion: A Historical Introduction. Thomson.
p. 50. ISBN 978-0-534-20718-2.
^ Mark Juergensmeyer; Wade Clark Roof (2011). Encyclopedia of Global
Religion. SAGE Publications. p. 148.
^ Asher, Frederick (2009). "From place to sight: locations of the
Buddha´s life". Artibus Asiae. 69 (2): 244.
^ Himanshu Prabha Ray (2014). The Return of the Buddha: Ancient
Symbols for a New Nation. Routledge. pp. 74–75, 86.
^ Lars Fogelin (2006). Archaeology of Early Buddhism. AltaMira Press.
pp. 42–43. ISBN 978-0-7591-1444-9.
Kushinagar geography". kushinagr.nic.in. Retrieved 18 July
^ a b c d e f g "Places in Kushinagar". kushinager.nic.in. Retrieved
17 July 2015.
Kushinagar Loksabha". elections. Retrieved 18 July 2015.
A Literary History of Deoria &
Kushinagar by M.A. Lari Azad (USM
Patil, D R (1981). Kusīnagara, New Delhi : Archaeological Survey
Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Kushinagar.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kushinara.
Official Photo Gallery of Kushinagar
Entry on Kusinara (Kushinagar) in the Dictionary of
Pali Proper Names
Kushinagar ruins and stupas
Photos of Kushinagar
Kushinagar Travel Guide
Kushinagar Photo Gallery, Temples At
Kushinagar, Archaeological Survey of India,
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