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Vaishali

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Vaishali

A famed tourist destination in Bihar, Vaishali is deemed to be the embrace of people of two main religions of India which are Buddhism and Jainism. It is a small village that offers so many attractions that one must not give a miss during the tour to Vaishali. There are various places of Buddhist interest encompassing Ananda Stupa, Kutagarasala Vihara and relic Stupa. Moreover, heaps of Jains throng to this place every year as the place is said to be the home of Bhagwan Mahavira. One can also explore the very old architectural beauty in this village standing as evidence to era of yore.

Vaishali today is a small village known for its historical past. The epic Ramayana tells the story of the heroic King Vishal who ruled here. Historians maintain that one of the world's first democratic republics with an elected assembly of representatives flourished here in the 6th century. Vaishali, on the left bank of the Gandak river, is spiritually supreme : Lord Buddha visited this place frequently and at Kolhua, close by, preached his last sermon. One of the famous lion pillars have been erected here by Emperor Ashoka. A hundred years after the Mahaparinirvana of the Buddha - Vaishali hosted the second great Buddhist council. Jainism, too, has its origins in Vaishali, for in 527 B.C., Lord Mahavir was born here and lived in Vaishali till he was 22. Vaishali is then twice blessed and remains an important pilgrim centre for both Buddhists and Jains and other religions also.

Vaishali has a past that pre-dates recorded history. It is held that the town derives its name from King Vishal, whose heroic deeds are narrated in the Hindu epic Ramayana. However, history records that around the time Pataliputra was the centre of political activity in the Gangetic plains, Vaishali came into existence as centre of the Ganga, it was the seat of the Republic of Vajji. Vaishali is credited with being the World's First Republic to have a duly elected assembly of representatives and efficient administration.

The Chinese travellers Fa-Hien and Hieun Tsang also visited this place in early 5th and 7th centuries respectively and wrote about Vaishali.

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