Scientist, Engineer, STEM Profesor

Lumbini Development Trust Survey

Lumbini is a Nepali town right at the border with India and is the place where Lord Buddha was born and raced as a child in accordance with Emperor Ashoka’s pillar/edict found in the archaeological record. I arrived at Lumbini during the third mass COVID-19 wave in India and some of the Buddhist monasteries were closed because not many people were coming from India, the border was closed, and many of those monasteries depend on donations from visitors in order for the monks to survive.

There were also concern about the safety of the monks monastic live environment due to COVID. Many monasteries there are used as embassies, specially the Tibetan ones, which receive political refuge monks from Chinese Tibet. So security is very tight with security cameras, which record sound also, and guards all over the place.

The problem there is that Lumbini is not very well developed yet, because Nepal is a very underdeveloped country, which means that you’ll see a lot of Golden Castles in the form of monasteries, stupas, temples, etc. surrounded by extreme human misery and that could create resentment (the communist party is becoming powerful in Nepal because of that) from the local population which do not benefit from that kind of development because they aren’t Buddhist monks.

As a tourists/pilgrims destination, Lumbini is in a remote location with no near by mass transportation system (airport/train) making it very inaccessible, the hotels there are managed by the locals with no or little experience in the tourism and hospitality industry making the services substandard, and the internet/WIFI and mobile connection are terrible.

So to sum it up, billions of dollars need to go into the Lumbini Development Trust in order for Lumbini to truly become well develop and that won’t be happening in the near future. Hoping of course, that the underdeveloped country government of Nepal won’t waist that money through corruption.