Published: Fri, March 09, 2018
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

Tibetans banned from staging rally in Delhi

Tibetans banned from staging rally in Delhi

India's Tibetan refugee community cancelled two major events in Delhi planned to mark the 60th anniversary year of the Dalai Lama's escape to India, after the Union government's discomfort was "conveyed" to its leadership in Dharamshala. There was also a plan to gift a souvenir, a Dharmachakra, from the Tibetan administration to a representative of the Indian government, as an expression of our gratitude to the Indian government for hosting us for 60 years.

The Dalai Lama's "Thank You India" public event, on April 1, was the high point of a series of yearlong events planned by the Tibetan exile government.

Following the above mentioned report - on Indian Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale's note to Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha who sent a directive to the Centre and states - the Tibetan government-in-exile made a decision to hold the "Thank You India" event in Dharamsala, either on March 31 or April 1. "We are not disappointed with the recent developments regarding our celebration".

Last week, a section of the media had reported that following a communication by Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale, Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha had sent out a note to senior functionaries of the central and state governments to skip events organised by the Tibetans.

When asked about his reaction regarding the Indian Government move, Mr Sonam Norbu Dagpo said, "We have no comments over the Government of India's advisory given to central and state governments".

The Chinese government considers the Dalai Lama a unsafe separatist. "These are likely to be followed up by additional events in Delhi as well as other states of India".

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Relations between China and India have been tense, after their troops faced off on a disputed part of their border.

"There was no direct message from the government to call off the commemorations, but it was conveyed to our leadership that perhaps these events should not be held in Delhi", said Tsering Dhondup, spokesperson of the Dalai Lama's Bureau, confirming the cancellations.

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama, center, delivers teachings at the Thupsung Dhargyeling Monastery in Dirang, Arunachal Pradesh, India, Thursday, April 6, 2017. "His Holiness is accorded all freedom to carry out his religious activities in India", said MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar. Many believe that the Dalai Lama's visit to Arunachal Pradesh from April 4 to 12 previous year had provoked Beijing to take diplomatic and military moves that impacted the relationship adversely through much of 2017.

Do you think it awas a good idea for the government to distance itself from the Dalai Lama?

Officials say Prime Minister Narendra Modi may visit Qingdao in China in June for the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation Summit.

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