New Delhi: Observing that the situation in earthquake-hit Nepal was "beyond our imagination", Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Monday that India should share the pain of the people of the neighbouring country.
Modi said he was sad that the land where Lord Buddha was born was in serious trouble following the April 25 earthquake that has claimed thousands of lives and left thousands of others injured.
Speaking on the occasion of Buddha Poornima at the Talkatora Stadium here, the prime minister said: "I pray to Buddha that the earthquake victims should not suffer any more."
He said the gathering was conscious of the suffering that the recent earthquake has caused in Nepal, but added that this is also an opportunity for everyone to follow Lord Buddha's message of "karuna" (compassion), and wipe the tears of those suffering in Nepal.
"We should share the pain and wipe the tears of people of Nepal," Modi said.
"The birthplace of Lord Buddha, our beloved brother Nepal is going through a massive crisis. People of Nepal have to bear this difficult situation. It is difficult to imagine how long and arduous this journey will be," he said.
Led by the prime minister, participants at the venue offered a special prayer for the quake victims.
India has deployed massive resources, including military forces, for rescue and relief operations in Nepal.
Modi said Lord Buddha's timeless message of love and compassion could help rid the world of the problems of war and violence.
The whole world has acknowledged that the 21st century will be Asia's century, he said, adding that Buddha's teachings would be the inspiration and guiding spirit for Asia as it showed the world the path to relief from problems of conflict and hatred.
The prime minister recalled his visits to Buddhist temples recently in Japan and Sri Lanka and also in China when he was chief minister of Gujarat.
He said that the profound spiritual consciousness that pervaded these temples must be forged into a powerful force for good in the world.