New Delhi: Marking the 60th year of exile in India, Tibetan Buddhist leader Dalai Lama is set to kick off yearlong pan India ‘Thank You India’ events on March 31.
The Central Tibetan Administration will organise a public event at the Tsuglagkhang temple on Saturday and the event will be attended by Indian dignitaries too.
In a statement, President Dr Losang Sangay said that Tibet is inextricably linked to India through geography, history, culture, and spiritually and that “the Tibetan struggle is ‘Made in India’ and said that ‘the success of the Tibetan struggle will be India’s success story.”
The announcement of the spiritual leader’s attendance comes a month after, according to a report in the Indian Express earlier this month, foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale had sent a note on February 22 to Cabinet Secretary PK Sinha, following which the "senior leaders" and "government functionaries" of the Centre and states were directed to skip events of exiled Tibetan leaders.
The Centre later clarified that Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama was free to "carry out his religious activities in India", reacting to reports that the government has asked senior functionaries to "skip” all events by the "Tibetan leadership in India".
In an interview to CNN-News18 earlier this month, Dalai Lama had said that he doesn't care about alleged pressure from China forcing the cancellation of events in Delhi to mark 60 years of the Tibetan government’s exile in India. He also said the position of the Dalai Lama has become irrelevant now and that the Tibetan people must decide on whether to continue it. The Tibetan government-in-exile shifted the high-profile event commemorating Dalai Lama’s 60 years of exile as an effort to bringing peace to relations between India and China.
Many Tibetan activists are said to have communicated to relevant authorities as the development ‘humiliated’ Dalai Lama.
China has for long considered the spiritual leader as a dangerous separatist and says Tibet is an integral part of its territory and has been for centuries. Beijing also says its rule ended serfdom and brought prosperity to what was a backward region, and that it fully respects the rights of the Tibetan people.
“Today, His Holiness the Dalai Lama is the best ambassador for Indian values of non-violence, ahimsa and inter-religious harmony and the promotion of basic human values: compassion and kindness,” said Dr Sangay.