For the first time, the Ministry of External Affairs has joined hands with the Gautam Buddha University to conduct a three-day course for Asian countries on India's Buddhist heritage. The name of course is ‘Engaged Buddhism: A joint way forward for India and ASEAN' and meant for diplomats, civil servants, and academics in ASEAN, officials said.
Talking about the course Arvind Singh from the Buddhist studies department said, "The course is on India’s Buddhist heritage. Worldwide, Buddhist diplomacy and soft power are being deeply studied. The Buddhist discourse is the true path of Asian diplomacy and common ground for international discussion.”
According to the MEA, this was part of India’s foreign policy initiative to deepen diplomatic, economic, cultural, and strategic associations. The MEA official said, “Today, 97% of the world’s Buddhist population lives in the Asian continent, and several (Asean) countries conceive of Buddhism as intrinsic to their national values and identity.”