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Bimal Bhikkhu Mahathera

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Bimal Bhikkhu Mahathera (12 November 1945 - ) is a Buddhist monk working in the field of peace, spirituality, education, knowledge and human rights. Born and raised in a Buddhist family, he was ordained as a Monk at the age of 18. He is involved in the establishment of noted social welfare and education oriented organizations such as Moanoghar, Shishu Koruna Sangha (SKS), Sakya Metta Buddhist Vihara etc.

Bimal Bhikkhu
Self- Bimal Bhikkhu.jpg File:Self- Bimal Bhikkhu.jpg
Born12 November 1945
Chittagong Hill Tracts of Undivided India
🏡 ResidenceBodhicariya Educational Complex, Kolkata, India
🏳️ NationalityIndian
Other names
🏳️ CitizenshipIndia
🏫 EducationMA in Philosophy
University of Dhaka
💼 Occupation
Social worker and Buddhist scholar
💵 Salary :
🏢 OrganizationShishu Koruna Sangha
Notable workMoanoghar, Shishu Koruna Sangha, Bodhicariya Sr. Sec. School
👴 👵 Parents
  • Lt. Mr. Batya Chakma (father)
  • Lt. Mrs. Parani (Pharali) Chakma (mother)
🌐 Websitewww.skskolkata.org

Early Life and Education[edit]

Bimal Bhikkhu was born in 1945 in Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHTs) of the then undivided India. He completed his secondary and higher secondary schooling from Chittagong and received MA in Philosophy from the University of Dhaka.

Religious, Social and Educational Initiatives[edit]

Bimal Bhikkhu has been involved in spreading Buddhism as well as social welfare and educational activities since his university days. His most notable works in the fields are :-

° Moanoghar, Rangamati, Bangladesh.[edit]

In 1980, Bimal Bhikkhu along with Prajnananda Mahathera, Shraddha Lankar Mahathera formed a monastery based educational institution to cater to the needs of tribal children from the remote region..[1]

° Sakyamuni Buddha Vihara, Dhaka, Bangladesh[edit]

The Sakyamuni Bouddha Vihara in Dhaka, Bangladesh was set up by Ven. Bimal Bhikkhu along with Prajnananda Mahathera in 1984. Setting up the Vihara paved the way for the people of the CHTs in bridging relations with other Buddhists around the world. The Vihara also runs a school named 'BANAPHOOL' (jungle flower) specially aimed to provide education to tribal children from Chittagong Hill Tracts.

° Shishu Koruna Sangha, Kolkata (SKS), India[edit]

In 1986, a non profit children welfare society by the name Shishu Koruna Sangha (SKS) was setup by Ven. Bimal Bhikkhu along with some social activists like Late. Sura Krishna Chakma, Ven. Dharmapal Mahathera (Bengal Buddhist Association) in Kolkata, India. Some notable projects are:

  • Bodhicariya Vihara for dhamma practice by monks
  • Hostels for poor students
  • Home for the destitute
  • Bodhicariya Group of Schools:-
    1. Bodhicariya Sr. Sec. School, Kolkata[2]
    2. Bodhicariya Primary School, Jorjori, Tripura
    3. Bodhicariya Primary School, Laxmipur, Tripura
    4. Bodhciariya Primary School, Borlongfar, Assam.
  • Bahujan Hitaya Healthcare Centre
  • Higher education scholarships for the meritorious students[3]

° Bodhi Dhamma Chakra Vihara, Sarnath, India[edit]

[4][5]To facilitate pilgrimage and spiritual needs, the Bodhi Dhamma Chakra Vihara project was envisaged and established in 2001in Sarnath. It aims to cultivate loving-kindness, compassion, sympathy, joy and equanimity among the devotees[6]. The project has the following components:-

  • Buddhist Vihara and Meditation Centre
  • Educational Institution
  • Guest House

* Sakya Mettta Buddhist Vihara, California, USA[edit]

Under the guidance of Bimal Bhikkhu, the ‘Sakya Metta Buddhist Temple’ was set up in 2009 at San Bernardino, California, United States. The temple is facilitating dialogue and sharing of the teachings of the Buddha with special focus on dealing with the issues and problems faced by the humankind today[7]

International Human Rights and Humanitarian Activities[edit]

° Relief operations for refugee camps in Tripura, India in 1986[edit]

In 1986, due to political turmoil the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT),

Bangladearound 45000 indigenous people sh fled to Indian border state of Tripura and took refugee in six shelter camps.[8][9][10][11]. Bimal Bhikkhu, with the help of renowned French NGO att " Partagé " attended the needs of refthese refugeemps. Relief materials such as clothes, medicine, and blankets have been provided. In addition, 20 temporary schools were setup.

° Representation in the Human Rights Conference at the United Nations, 1987 and Other Summits[edit]

Bimal Bhikkhu was invited by the Working Group on Indigenous People Conference at Geneva, Switzerland from August 3 to 7, 1987[12]. The conference was organized by the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), Commission on Human Rights, Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities.

He was also invited and represented on several occasions by organizations such as Amnesty International, Anti-Slavery International, and Survival International in London, UK, The International Fellowship of Reconciliation based in Amsterdam, and International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs (IWGIA) based in Copenhagen, Denmark; Human Rights Watch (HRW), New York; International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB) in Bangkok, Thailand; Buddhist Peace Fellowship in Berkeley, California were a few among other international human rights organizations that have invited Bimal Bhikkhu to highlight on conflicts and human rights situation in the CHTs, Bangladesh.[13][14][15][16]

° Journey of 72 orphans from refugee camps in India to France, 1987[edit]

Bimal Bhikkhu and Pierre Marchand of Partage, France have facilitated journey and rehabilitation of 72 orphans from the indigenous Chakma community who were sheltered in the refugee camps of Tripura, India to be rehabilitated in France on October 6, 1987 for the purpose of pursuing education under the patronage and sponsorship of Partage, a humanitarian organization, based in France[20]. Today, all of them are contributing to the development of France and globally.[21][22][23]

° Representation to the United Nations, 1992[edit]

On December 10, 1992, Bimal Bhikkhu participated in the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York as a Representative of the Asian Indigenous Population in launching of the International Year for the World's Indigenous Peoples, 1993 focusing on the multifarious problems being faced by the indigenous peoples in Asia.[24] Ven. Bhikkhu spoke about vicious suppressive and oppressive measures by the government and gross human rights violation on the indigenous people of CHT, Bangladesh.[25][26][27][28][29]

° Millennium World Peace Summit, UN 2002[edit]

Bimal Bhikkhu participated in the Millennium World Peace Summit of the United Nations, 2002. Primary objective of the Summit is to create a forum of all preeminent religious and spiritual leaders of the world and to pledge a commitment to take concrete actions for the achievement of world peace and eliminate the causes that perpetrates violence and war[30]

See also[edit]

  • Chakma people
  • Chittagong Hill Tracts
  • Human rights
  • Humanitarianism
  • Indigenous Population
  • Social Activism


  1. "Moanoghar". moanoghar.org. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  2. "BANYAN-PROJECT". www.banyan-project.de. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  3. "Shishu Koruna Sangha : Projects". www.skskolkata.org. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  4. Asher, Frederick M. (2003), "Sarnath", Oxford Art Online, Oxford University Press, doi:10.1093/gao/9781884446054.article.t076054
  5. Kory., Goldberg (2012). Along the path : the meditator's companion to the Buddha's land. Pariyatti Publishing. ISBN 9781928706571. OCLC 809771482. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  6. "Shishu Koruna Sangha : Projects". www.skskolkata.org. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  7. Karuna Buddhist Society. "meet our spirituals". kbsusa.org. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  8. "Attacks Continue on Indigenous People in the Chittagong Hill Tracts". www.culturalsurvival.org. Retrieved 2019-02-24.
  9. March 15, RAMESH MENON; March 15, 1987 ISSUE DATE; January 13, 1987UPDATED; Ist, 2014 17:51. "Trickle of Chakma refugees fleeing into Tripura from Bangladesh becomes a flood". India Today. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  10. "India says Bangladesh agrees to take back Chakma tribal refugees". UPI. Retrieved 2019-02-24.
  11. Bandyopadhyay, Rathin (2007). Human Rights of the Non-citizen: Law and Reality. Deep & Deep Publications. ISBN 9788176299145. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  12. "Statement by the Venerable Bimal Tishya Bhikkhu on behalf of the people of the Chittagong Hill Tracts - UNWGIP August 1987". www.nzdl.org. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  13. Kemner, Jochen (May 2014). "Fourth World Activism in the First World: The Rise and Consolidation of European Solidarity with Indigenous Peoples". Journal of Modern European History. 12 (2): 262–279. doi:10.17104/1611-8944_2014_2_262. ISSN 1611-8944.
  14. "Chittagong Hill Tracts group alleges atrocities by Bangladesh Army - Indian Express". archive.indianexpress.com. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  15. International, Survival. "Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh – rapists act with impunity". www.survivalinternational.org. Retrieved 2019-02-24.
  16. International, Survival. "Tribal girl raped and murdered in Bangladesh as repression continues". www.survivalinternational.org. Retrieved 2019-02-24.
  17. Avenue, Human Rights Watch | 350 Fifth; York, 34th Floor | New; t, NY 10118-3299 USA | (2015-05-18). "Bangladesh's Persecuted Indigenous People". Human Rights Watch. Retrieved 2019-02-24.
  18. Tanaka, Chisato (2018-05-13). "Young social entrepreneur seeks to help asylum-seekers integrate into Japanese society, even while they're in limbo". The Japan Times Online. ISSN 0447-5763. Retrieved 2019-02-25.
  19. Singh, Deepak (2010). Stateless in South Asia: The Chakmas between Bangladesh and India. New Delhi. doi:10.4135/9788132104940. ISBN 9788132102366. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  20. "Il y a 30 ans, l'espoir pour 72 orphelins du Bangladesh accueillis en France et en Lorraine". www.republicain-lorrain.fr (in français). Retrieved 2019-02-25.
  21. "Bangladesh orphans arrive in France". UPI. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  22. Chakma, Kabita; Hill, Glen (2016), DCosta, Bina, ed., "Politics of the Orphans of War: 72 Children's Journey from the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh to the Suburbs of France", Children and Violence, Cambridge University Press, pp. 132–158, doi:10.1017/cbo9781316338155.008, ISBN 9781316338155
  23. Nicolas, Paul; Baby-Collin, Virginie (2018-06-22). "La fabrique d'une communauté transnationale au prisme des réseaux sociaux. Les Jummas entre France et Bangladesh". Temporalités. Revue de Sciences Sociales et Humaines (in français) (27). doi:10.4000/temporalites.4300. ISSN 1777-9006.
  24. "Representatives of the World's Indigenous Peoples Participate in the Launching of International Year, 1993". United Nations Photo. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  25. "Dhaka accused of brutality against its tribal peoples". The Independent. 1992-12-10. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  26. "UNPO: Chittagong Hill Tracts: Kolkata Press Conference Condemns Bangladeshi Military Atrocities". unpo.org. Retrieved 2019-02-23.
  27. "Chittagong rights violations continue, says UN". IRIN. 2011-04-28. Retrieved 2019-02-24.
  28. Zinsser, Zudith P. (1994). A new partnership: indigenous peoples and the United Nations system. Paris, France: UNESCO. p. 95. ISBN 978-9231030468. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  29. Bhaumik, Subir (2017-10-02). "Hapless people in a fluid corridorÂ". Southasian Monitor. Retrieved 2019-02-25.
  30. "The World Council of Religious Leaders". www.millenniumpeacesummit.org. Retrieved 2019-02-24.

External links[edit]

Category:1945 births Category:Living people Category:Social workers Category:Activists Category:Humanitarians Category:Human rights Category:Peace Category:Harmony Category:Religion Category:Educators Category:Buddhism Category:Meditation Category:Spiritual practice Category:Education Category:Human rights abuses in Bangladesh Category:University of Dhaka alumni Category:Chakma Category:India Category:Tripura Category:Assam Category:Arunachal Pradesh Category:Mizoram Category:Meghalaya Category:Kolkata Category:Uttar Pradesh

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