Nalanda and the ruins of the ancient Nalanda Mahavihara are almost synonymous. The name Nalanda conjures up a picture of ancient Mahavihara, which was a great seat of Buddhist education for nearly 700 years between the 5th to 12th centuries AD.
His Excellency, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, the first President of the Republic of India had initiated the idea and declared that the ancient seat of Buddhist learning at Nalanda would be revived and thus had emanated the vision of establishing the Nava Nalanda Mahavihara. On November 20, 1951, the foundation stone of the first building was laid with the following engravig :
"Let the rays of the sun of Nalanda rise from the summit of this rock in order to brighten the vernacular
( lokabhāsā in Pali ) after the passing away of its nights of darkness (period of its obscurity)."
At the insistence of Ven. Bhikshu Jagdish Kashyap and with this goal in mind, the Government of Bihar established a research institute called "Magadh Institute of Post-Graduate Studies and Research in Pali and Allied Languages and Buddhist Learning" at Nalanda in 1951. It later came to be known as Nava Nalanda Mahavihara.
The inspiration behind the establishment of this institute was to develop a centre of Higher Studies in Pali and Buddhism along the lines of ancient Nalanda Mahavihara. From the beginning, the Institute functioned as a residential institution, with a limited number of Indian and foreign students.
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Nava Nalanda Mahavihara
(Deemed to be University)
(Under Ministry of Culture, Government of India)
Nalanda- 803111, BIHAR, INDIA