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Thailand princess visits 8th century Unakoti rock carvings in Tripura

Princess of Thailand Maha Chakri Sirindhorn was given a grand welcome upon her arrival in Agartala by Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb and others.

Written by Debraj Deb | Agartala |
Updated: November 27, 2018 10:41:25 pm
Tripura CM Biplab Kumar Deb greets Princess of Thailand Maha Chakri Sirindhorn at Kailashahar airport. (Source: Twitter/@BjpBiplab)

Princess of Thailand Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Tuesday visited the 8th-century rock carvings a Unakoti in Tripura’s northern side, 170 Km from here. The princess, a noted Indophile, is a scholar of Sanskrit and was awarded the coveted Padma Bhushan award in 2007.

Speaking to reporters after her visit to Unakoti, Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb quoting the Thailand Princess said that she wondered why she didn’t visit this spot before.

“This is a unique place full of grandeur and art. I would like to visit other tourist spots in the state like Chabimura (Gomati district) and Neermahal (Sipahijala district),” Chief Minister Deb quoted her as saying.

He also said his government would work hard to attract tourists from different parts of the country and turn tourism into a self-sustaining revenue earning sector. “We shall work hard to develop the tourism sector in Tripura. The industry got a boost with the visit of the Thai princess,” he said.

The Princess landed at a helipad close to Unakoti where she was flown in an Indian Air Force chopper.

She was given a grand welcome upon her arrival in Agartala by Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb and others. The CM accompanied her to Unakoti from Agartala where she was received by officials of the district administration and two local MLAs – Bhagaban Das and Sudhangshu Das. They stirred replica of national flags and welcomed the Thailand Princess to Tripura.

Unakoti rock carvings on Raghunandan Hills sport features of Hindu gods and goddesses. The carvings date back to the 8th Century.

Myth has it that one crore gods including Lord Shiva halted at the hill. Shiva left the place without the gods, making it ‘one less than a crore’ or ‘Unakoti’, which is how the rock carvings came to be known later.

Chabimura, which the princess expressed interest to visit later, is an 11th-century rock cut carving in Amarpur sub-division of Gomati district, 90 km from here.

Neermahal or Tripura’s famous lake water is the summer palace of Maharaja Bir Bikram Kishore Manikya Bahadur which was built in 1939. The palace is built on Lake Rudrasagar, spread across 2100 acres.

The Thailand Princess had earlier expressed interest to visit three Northeast Indian states – Tripura, Manipur and Mizoram during November. Thailand Ambassador to India Chutintorn Gongsakdi reportedly communicated with the Tripura Chief Minister’s Office in September about her visit.

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