These VVIPs in Dalai Lama's preaching sessions are all below the poverty line, on wrong side of 80

Unbelievable though this may seem, these VVIPs in Dalai Lama's preaching sessions are all below the poverty line and over 80 years old.

Unlike the VVIP culture prevalent in India that enables those in power abuse their positions using money, this set of VVIPs in Dalai Lama's preaching sessions will leave you surprised!

Unbelievable though this may seem, Dalai Lama's VVIPs are all below the poverty line and over 80 years old.

For 82-year-old Sitim, getting to be a part of this august group of preachers in the spiritual leader's sessions is like a dream come true.

Living on the Indo-China Border in Zimethang, he had never thought that he would be this close to his God (the Dalai Lama), but is now living the time of his life.

Sitim says, "The Dalai Lama is here and Tawang is blessed to have him. More so because he came by road. We were able to see him in person. He made the effort to come by road at this age. When he can do this much, why can we not strive to be a part of his group. We are feeling blessed. I live on the Indo-China border area and am still unable to believe that this is indeed true."


During his visit to the Tawang district, Dalai Lama today sermonised from morning to noon. Lakhs are pouring in from across the state. But as many as 520 people have been identified as VVIPs, who are sitting just fifty metres away from His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

All these are from across Tawang district, some even do not have a family to take care of them and have travelled for more than a day to reach Tawang town.

For 84-year-old Dawa Choton, it is like her prayers having been answered. Hailing from Lhou in Tawang, she can't stop sobbing and smiling at the same time.

Dawa explains, "Dalai Lama is here. There can be no bigger achievement for me in life. I don't have money or resources. It is like my prayers having been answered that I am sitting so close to him. I feel I am in heaven."


The government of Arunachal Pradesh, legislators and the district administration has together made this congregation possible.

Tsering Tashi, MLA of Tawang assembly constituency, said, "We wanted to provide comfort to the old-aged and senior citizens. Especially, the octogenarians and those older were identified across the district and given identity cards so that they could sit and listen to the Dalai Lama just in front of him and seek his blessings."

A group of government teachers also worked actively to make this practically possible.

Jambey Tashi, MLA from Lumla assembly constituency and Parliamentary Secretary in the Arunachal Pradesh government, said, "This is an effort to uplift the poor and downtrodden and enable them benefit from the teachings of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Compassion can spread only if we attempt to do something beyond what has been happening. We are changing for the better. They are the people who matter."


For 86-year-old Dorjee Bhuti, it's an end of his miseries. A resident of Khoblaitang near the Bhutan border, she cannot stop thanking everyone around her for making her a VVIP.

"All my dreams have been achieved and problems sorted. For the first time in my life, I feel like a VVIP. I cannot believe that I am sitting in front of him," says Dorjee Bhuti.

Similarly, 85-year-old Phunsai Gyaso says, "I can't believe I am sitting here. I sincerely thank Chief Minister Pema Khandu and his government who have planned this and given so much importance to poor people like us."

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