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PM Modi kicks off Nepal visit with prayers at historic Maya Devi temple in Lumbini

Prime Ministers Narendra Modi and Sher B Deuba at the Maya Devi Temple in Lumbini.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived at Lumbini in Nepal on Monday morning and offered prayers at the sacred Maya Devi temple on the occasion of Buddha Purnima.

He was accompanied by his Nepal’s Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba during his visit to the historic temple, the birth place of Gautam Buddha.

"Beginning the Nepal visit with prayers at the sacred Maya Devi Temple, Lumbini," the Office of the Prime Minister of India tweeted.

"I would like to thank PM @SherBDeuba for the warm welcome in Lumbini," PM Modi said in a tweet.

"On the auspicious occasion of Buddha Purnima, both Prime Ministers offered pooja and prayers at the sacred Mayadevi temple in Lumbini, the birth place of Gautam Buddha," Nepal's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Twitter.

"Landed in Nepal. Happy to be among the wonderful people of Nepal on the special occasion of Buddha Purnima. Looking forward to the programmes in Lumbini," Prime Minister Modi said on Twitter after his arrival.

PM Modi, who is in the Himalayan nation at the invitation of his Nepalese counterpart Sher Bahadur Deuba, is paying a day-long visit to Lumbini on the occasion of Buddha Purnima.

PM Modi and Indian officials accompanying him, flew on a special Indian Air Force helicopter from Kushinagar in Uttar Pradesh to Lumbini which is in the south of Nepal. This is the PM’s fifth visit to Nepal since 2014 and represents another step forward in India’s Neighbours First policy.

PM Modi will also participate in the foundation laying ceremony for the construction of a centre for Buddhist Culture and heritage within the Lumbini Monastic Zone.

Also read: India, Nepal to sign five MoUs during PM Modi's Lumbini visit