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A New Buddhist Sect Established in India? [Video]

At 6 PM, 16 August 2018, there was a strange scene appeared in front of Sabarmati Hostel, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi.

I and my friend, Mr. Hong, an employee of Delhi-based service company, were about to go out for dinner and suddenly there was a group of people about 40-50 year of age wearing yellow robe looking similar to Buddhist monks but not shaving hair and holding two different yant banners with black background. Apparently, they were impoverished.

We thought that could be a new form of Buddhism in India and its followers were propagating their new religion. However, we were not clear about it.

Suddenly, as they moved forward they chanted Pranama Gatha "Buddham Saranam Gacchami Dhammam Saranam Gacchami Sangham Saranam Gacchami" along with the play of spiritual music.

We then delayed to go out for dinner for a while to follow up what it was really about. After we heard their chants of Pali text "Buddham Saranam Gacchami..." we were sure that that was a Buddhist show though we did not know it meant to show. Constrained with our plan to go out for dinner we decided to leave the show but doubt and question had remained.

When we came back to the hostel we googled the show and finally, we found news on a show played at Ambedkar University, New Delhi, which was exactly played by the same team as one being played in JNU where we stayed.

So, we came to know that the show was called "Tathagat", an anti-hatred campaign performed by New Delhi-based amateur theatre company specialising in left-wing street theatre in Hindi called "Jana Natya Manch).

Likewise, we understood that the men with yellow robe were not a Buddhist monk belonging to any new Buddhist sect in India as what we suspected early. They changed their clothes into ordinary clothes when the show began.

"Tathagat" is a new production of this artist team. The theme of this topic was chosen specifically to show support for Omar Khalid, a member of JNU Students' Union who was attacked by two men in a market in New Delhi during Indian Independence Day.

Majority of students in this premium university are leftists that are labelled and excused by those from the rightists with many slanders particularly on anti-national charge or national betrayal.

There were about 100 students sat down on the ground and watched the show nearby a Chay shop. It is interesting to note that this sort of activity is held by students' organisation and the concerned media almost every day at the university campus. It is a political activity of the Students' Union.

Please watch the video below about the show (in Hindi). Please note that this performance was about the Buddha story but I couldn't remember the title. It is a story about a Buddha-statue maker who made a Buddha statue from a black stone, not marble. And because of that, he was executed by the king...If you could remember the story please post your comment below.

Thank you and Enjoy!

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