“It gives me pleasure to see Mintu Pal’s work,” Ven. Ariyapala told Buddhistdoor Global. “We have a 45-foot [14-meter] Buddha statue in Rajchandrapur on the outskirts of Kolkata, where our BIMW has another branch. I believe the reclining Buddha statue will impress everyone.”
According to media reports, Pal began creating the statue in March 2019, but work was suspended due to the COVID-19 lockdown. The artists resumed their work in November last year.
Ven. Ariyapala explained that just before attaining Mahaparinirvana in Kushinagar, Uttar Pradesh, the Buddha recited his last words while lying on a throne. As a result, Buddhists place high importance on statues of the reclining Buddha.
Ven. Ariyapala also noted that there is a 24-meter staue of a standing Buddha in Saranath, Uttar Pradesh, and a 24-meter Buddha statue in Bodh Gaya seated in a meditation posture.
“Our reclining Buddha statue is also 80-foot [24 meters],” Aryapal said, adding that the statue could have been made bigger, but as the Buddha lived 80 years so the length of the statue was decided in accordance. However, with the addition of an altar, the entire length of the scuplture comes to 100 feet [30 meters]. This will be the largest reclining statue in the country, he added.