President Ram Nath Kovind will inaugurate the Asadha Poornima celebrations being observed as Dharma Chakra Day from the Rashtrapati Bhavan today.

The celebrations are being organized by the International Buddhist Confederation (IBC) in partnership with the Union Ministry of Culture.

On the occasion, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will deliver a video address to emphasize the teachings of Lord Buddha and the Eight Fold Path shown by him.

Dharma Chakra Day commemorates Lord Buddha's first sermon to his first five ascetic disciples at the Deer Park in Rsipatana in the present day Sarnath near Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. The day is also celebrated by Buddhists all over the world as the day of Dharma Chakra Parvattana or "Turning of the Wheel of Dharma".

Union Ministers Prahlad Patel and Kiren Rijiju will also address the opening ceremony. A special message of the President of Mongolia will also be read out at the event and a valuable Buddhist manu of Indian origin preserved in Mongolia for centuries together, will be presented to President Kovind.

This day is also observed as Guru Poornima by both Buddhists and Hindus as a day to mark reverence to their Gurus. Other events, including messages from top Buddhist religious leaders, Masters and Scholars from different parts of the world will be streamed from Sarnath and Bodh Gaya.

Due to COVID-19 pandemic, the entire programme is being conducted virtually. Today's event is expected to be witnessed by around 30 lakh devotees worldwide through live webcast.  

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