A leading archaeologist has said the Buddhist ‘Vihara’ – recently unearthed in the birth place of Buddhist religion preacher and scholar Atish Dipankar – was known as ‘Bikrampuri Vihara’ a thousand years ago.
Project researcher Prof Dr Sufi Mostafizur Rahman, a teacher of the Archaeology Department at Jahangirnagar University, on Saturday said there were more viharas like this ‘Bikrampuri Vihara’.
“History suggests, this is the Bikrampuri Vihara,” he said after a visit to the area on Saturday.
Rahman along with other archaeologists, historians and a team of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs visited the site in Raghurampur of Munshiganj Upazila on Saturday.
Rahman said local people would now take care of the site.
“We have dug up the history. Locals are now in-charge of its maintenance and preservation,” he said.
Awami League Presidium Member Nuh-ul-Alam Lenin, Director of the Archaeological Excavation and Research in Bikrampur region, had earlier confirmed the discovery of the site.
Many enthusiasts including foreigners have already visited the site.
The delegates on Saturday suggested building a tourist zone in the area.
Ministry of Cultural Affairs Secretary Suraiya Begum said the ‘Vihara’ was undoubtedly a symbol of ancient civilization.
“Already foreign tourists are arriving. Road infrastructure in Raghurampur will be developed to facilitate tourists,” she said.
Columnist Syed Abdul Maksud said this proved to the world that civilization in the region began much earlier compared to Europe and America.
Faisal Ahmed, a student of the Atish Dipankar University of Science and Technology, said the ‘Vihara’ would introduce Bangladesh to the world in a new way.
He said the discovery would also increase chances of flourishing tourism in the area.
Mughal and Sultani regime establishments were also situated near the newly-discovered ‘Vihara’ in Munshiganj district.