The archaeological and historical heritage of Nagadipaya
Nagadipaya called as Nainathive island. Lord Buddha went to Sri lanka third time. At the second time Lord Buddha arrived at Nagadipaya. It is happened on fifth year after enlightment According to past information ven came here to settle down the fight among two brothers, Chulodara and Mahodara. They fought for jem chair. The people who were tribals gathered there .Lord Buddha discoursed preaching to tribals and concurred the battle and avoiding huge homicide. They worshipped gem chair to Buddhist and later Nagadipa cairn was made deep- rooting chair. This can be seen bo tree , temple and ancient cairn.
The Buddhist temple of Nagadipa stood on the island of Nainativu eight miles from kayts. According to hoary legend .Nagadipa has direct connections with the life of Gautama Buddha. In the olden days only a shrine existed, but by dint of devoutness the temple had grown to sizable proportions .Isolated as it was, and lacking financial support from a steady flow of pilgrims, the temples had still managed to survive and preserve its atmosphere of quiet holiness.
In commemoration of Buddha Jayanthi celebrations the Burmese government had given to the Nagadipa vihara a magnificent bronze- allay statue. This image had been taken round in various canters in the south so that as many persons as possible could see it before enshrinement in Nainamativu.
One afternoon a gang of ‘’Goondas’’ suspected to be among those who had earlier destroyed the boats at kayts ( presumably with a view to preventing any chance of being pursed by the police ) set out on the eight mile trip to Nainativu.
There they acted swiftly and skillfully. This act of desecration was, without doubt, premediated and planned. With vicious zeal they set about destroying the temple .They dynamited the Dagoba, snapping off the capering top section. They burnt every building except one, an outhouse. A small detachment of the gang wreaked their anger on the Buddha image from Burma. They hauled it off the pedestal and carried it away with them. Perhaps it proved too heavy for them to carry across to the mainland for display as trophy, because it never reached Kayts. With what surely must have been demoniacal purpose, the goondas sawed through the neck, one arm and some fingers of the image Their intent was to damage I beyond repair in case it should be recovered later.Then they tossed the truncated body and its smaller parts into the see at various points.
The news of this dangerous devilry reached Colombo two daya later .It was an act of such gross vandalism with such huge potentialities for rousing the already fermenting south into foaming anger that the Governor General and the Army command were loathe to believe their ears. As each hour passed they expected the story to spread through the Buddhist population, sparking a massacre. But the strict secrecy which had to be maintained until the military had really dug in and established themselves as a formidable force throughout the island was some how kept unbroken .The Minister of Transport and works, Mr. Maitripala Senanayake was sent to Nainativu to investigate. He confirmed the earlier reports, destruction almost complete.
The incumbent Bhikku of Nagadipa was invented to Colombo and told the temple would be restored to better shape than it was before the ‘’Goonda’’ attack. The Bhikku maintained a dignified and discreet silence the public works Department was instructed to start restoration work at once. By the end of July a brand new temple had risen from the debris of the old edifice .The navy undertook the alost task of salvaging the image .They had no clue as to where it was dumped but miraculously, they found the spot, as expected the damage was irreparable.
With the assistance of the Burmese Ambassador , the Governor general was able to secure a replica of the destroyed image from Burma. It was brought to Ceylon in the early August as a gift ‘’relic’’ from the Burmese navy to the Ceylon navy.
They story of the destruction of Nagadipa and the way it was rebuilt in eight weeks will weave itself into Buddhist legend in the years to come. But when the tension dies, people who relate the story will forget its most significant aspect.