Tibetan govt-in-exile extends Republic Day greetings

DHARAMSHALA: The Tibetan government-in-exile on Sunday greeted the people of India on 71st Republic Day and said the Tibetan people are eternally grateful to the country for supporting their efforts towards preservation of their ancient culture and unique identity.

Ven Karma Gelek Yuthok, the ‘minister of department of religion and culture’, hoisted the Indian national flag at a ceremony attended by Tibetan leaders at the CTA headquarters here.

“On this glorious occasion of the 71st Republic Day, the Central Tibetan Administration and the Tibetans around the world would like to congratulate the People and Government of India,” he said.

He said over the course of 71 years, India has garnered worldwide admiration for its booming growth in every field and especially for the thriving democracy and diversity. He said Tibetan people are eternally grateful to the government and people of India for granting asylum to the Dalai Lama and “for supporting the efforts of the Tibetan people in the preservation of its rich ancient culture and unique identity .

The Tibetan people pledge to repay the gratitude through an initiative led the Dalai Lama which is the revival of ancient Indian tradition in contemporary India, he said. The minister also thanked the Indian government for giving recognition to the Tibetan Buddhist tradition and culture and conferring India’s highest civilian awards on individuals with extraordinary accomplishments in the Tibetan Buddhism discipline.

On Republic Day this year, the government has conferred the prestigious Padma Shri award on American Buddhist scholar and Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies at Columbia University Robert Thurman.

In 2009, Prof. Geshe Ngawang Samten, the vice-chancellor of the Central University of Tibetan Studies based in Sarnath, India, was honoured with the Padma Shri in literature.

In 2018, Dr Yeshi Dhonden, a noted Tibetan medical practitioner and the Dalai Lama’s former personal physician, was conferred the Padma Shri award for his contribution towards medicine. PTI