Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam (R) presents the certificate recognising Bo Da Pagoda as a special national relic site to a Bac Giang official (Photo: VNA)

Bac Giang (VNA) – The Bac Giang provincial People’s Committee received a certificate recognising Bo Da Pagoda, an ancient Buddhist temple in Tien Son commune of Viet Yen district, as a special national relic site on March 12.

Attending the ceremony were Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam, representatives from ministries and central agencies, and leaders of Bac Giang province and Viet Yen district.

Presenting a certificate recognising the pagoda’s festival as a national intangible cultural heritage to Viet Yen district, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Dang Thi Bich Lien urged the authorities and people of Bac Giang province and Viet Yen district to make an overall plan on preserving the Bo Da Pagoda in the long run.

Bo Da Pagoda dates back to the Ly Dynasty in the 11th century and were upgraded during the reign of King Le Du Tong in the 18th century. It is a famous Buddhist centre in the former Kinh Bac area, which is now Bac Giang, with unique traditional architectural values.

The pagoda is the birthplace of the Lam Te Buddhist Zen sect. It is also preserving 1,935 Buddhist prayer woodblocks which are the oldest of its kind made of Diospyros decandra wood in Vietnam.

It is home to the country’s biggest garden of towers with 97 towers of all sizes keeping the sarira of 1,214 monks and nuns of the Lam Te Zen sect. The temple also accommodates 40 Buddhist statues dating back to the Le and Nguyen dynasties several hundreds of years ago.

The Bo Da Pagoda Festival, taking place from the 16th to 18th day of the second lunar month, is dedicated to the gods protecting the local people.-VNA